“Curious Souls Get Together” 4th meeting

Dear Curious Souls,

We had our 4th meeting at the “We” bar in Beyoglu, Istanbul, on Sunday, February 3,2013. It was a beautiful, sunny day in Istanbul and we were about 35 people at the meeting. As previously announced, our theme was “Love.”

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Before we started watching the videos on love, we watched the humorous and interesting talk of Derek Sivers titled “Weird, or just different?”  

 

In this talk Sivers shows that you may consider something as true but if you go somewhere else, the truth might be totally different than what you expect. So in fact, it is good to keep in mind that there is always a flip side to things 🙂

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Then we went on to watch the talks of anthropologist Helen Fisher, who is considered as a scientific expert on romantic love. She devoted years to define romantic love’s evolution, its biochemical foundations and its vital importance to human society. The TED talks we watched were:  “Why we love, why we cheat” and “The brain in love”  

In these talks, Helen Fisher says that after her research, she came to the understanding that romantic love is not an emotion but a drive- a similar drive like thirst or hunger.

She explains which brain regions are activated when a person falls in love, what the three drives that are related to love are (the sex drive, the romantic love drive and the attachment drive), what happens when a person is dumped and whether long term love is possible or not. She identifies the social trends that change the structure of love – like women’s entry into work life and she also points out to the danger that is posed by anti-depression drugs that risk to diminish the ability to love. She also reminds us that “the world is a deadly place without love”

Helen Fisher, after dealing long time during her academic career, on what happens when someone is in love,  then embarks extensive research on another human mystery: “Why we choose one partner over another?” In the following talk titled: Why Do Fools Fall in Love?” 🙂 Dr.Fisher gave us the answer :-).

In this talk she lists the interesting patterns she found on how nature works, how she grouped people under 4 different personality types and what type of tendencies exist while these 4 groups made choises on a romantic partner.

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As usual, after each talk, we carried a discussion on it. The subject of love is highly personal in nature and I realised that it was somewhat difficult to discuss it. Sharing often risks the disclosure of personal experiences; highly unwanted in such a crowded group 🙂 However, we still expressed our views on what we thought was interesting and what our experiences and thoughts were relating to these subjects. While we enjoyed to learn about the scientific research findings on love, some of us – interestingly mostly men – expressed the view that they did not find it very appealing to have such a scientific approach towards love. They said that love was a feeling that everybody recognized when they had it and that there was no need to make such a rationalistic, academic evaluation on love.

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I should also mention that, while trying to select the TED talks that relate to love, I was extremely surprised to find out that, among 1600 TED talks, there were only two – the ones of Dr.Helen Fisher- that related directly to romantic love! No wonder we call love a mystery 🙂 Only a scientist dared to talk about love on TED!

Finally, we watched an intriguing musical performance of singer Rachelle Garniez and Thomas Dolby on the beautiful song of Edith Piaf, “La Vie en Rose“.

We then ended our meeting but our programme was not over 🙂 We continued the evening with a fun dinner! I could not but notice that members, even the ones who were so hesitant to share anything personnal about love, started talking about themselves and confessions followed one after another 🙂 I felt that this brought us even more together.. As Dr. Fisher puts it, I noticed that “hardly anybody can escape from love alive” 🙂

I would like to thank all participants for being a part of our 4th meeting and for contributing to our discussions.

Best regards and see you all at our 5th meeting on Sunday, March 3, 2013, at the “Istanbul Sailing Club” in Fenerbahce.

Isil the Curious Soul 🙂

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