The moment you say it, it will be the end. You know this. But no matter what you do, you still can't stop loving your best friend. You know the reason behind every gesture, quirk, or intention that accompanies their words. You would do anything for them, but you fear that your confession might make your beautiful long-lasting friendship crumble. You would be throwing away their trust and mutual understanding and that's something you couldn't bear to do. But keeping all those words and feelings inside is also killing you.
First, you need to calm down. Falling in love with someone you know and love so deeply is much more common than you think. Actually, a relationship with a friend is even purer, more honest, and everlasting.
Feeling sad when you get "friend zoned" is nothing new. Theories about love and friendship can be traced back to 400 BC. These topics have always been complex for us. We need to know how to relate, what we feel, and why this happens. We need explanations!
"Phaedrus" is one of the most famous chapters in Plato's Dialogues. It's a dialogue between Socrates and Phaedrus about the nature of the soul, the theory of memory, and mastering virtue. We can find examples of everyday life in these Greek texts because they are used to discuss specific philosophical questions. Thus, the subject of the nature of love is brought up.
In his speech, Lysias defends friends over lovers. Through rhetorical arguments he attempts to prove that it is easier to convince a person not in love of providing favors to someone, than to do the same with someone who is in love. This little detail remind us that friendship is a purer form of love in comparison to what you feel for a partner. Below you'll find his arguments:
A friend will never keep you away from the people you care about
When a person is in love, they behave as if they're insane. They follow the object of their affection wherever they go and they can even keep them away from those who care about them. They get fits of jealousy and possessiveness, and are suspicious of any person who tries to approach their beloved. Whereas a friend doesn't seek to cage you because they understand that no bond is exclusive. According to Lysias, infatuated lovers fear the beloved may abandon them if they attain higher security with someone else. That's why lovers try keep the beloved away from any person they consider superio while friends share things equally.
How can you not love someone who is happy when you are?
Friendship goes beyond physical beauty
"Many lovers too have loved the person of a youth before they knew his character or his belongings; so that when their passion has passed away, there is no knowing whether they will continue to be his friends; whereas, in the case of non-lovers who were always friends, the friendship is not lessened by the favors granted, but the recollection of these remains with them, and is an earnest of good things to come."
Another argument mentioned in this Greek text explains that a lover only cares about the beauty of the beloved. That's the first spark that ignites their fire. They care more about satisfying their own desires. Meanwhile, a friend appreciates your company and has a deeper connection with you. That pierces through any appearance.
How can you not love someone who is by your side in the best and worst moments of your life?
Friends improve each other
We love our friends with the same unconditional love we receive from them. There's nothing more natural and wonderful. As you have noticed, "old" philosophy books deal with subjects that continue to be vital for us.
Dialogues of Plato, "Phaedrus". The Internet Classics Archive.
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