Imagine yourself on a plane that is flying really low over a breathtaking landscape. You are in the window seat and you are awestruck. But the person on the next seat is a total stranger who is immersed in a book or a newspaper: it is so pointless and silly to tug at that person's elbow and say, "Look, look!" And since your mobile phone is switched off, it is also impossible to call up a loved one to describe what you are witnessing. Even if the various airlines allowed you to keep your phones on, what would you really describe? Whatever you describe would make no sense to a person who is geographically elsewhere, engrossed in work or some domestic chore.
So you are left with no choice but to feel the beauty of the landscape and not talk about it. Either there is no one to talk about it, or even if there is, the person would never understand the exhilaration you are going through. It's the same thing with love: you only feel it, but don't talk about it. When you are in love, it is like inhaling the beauty of a place all by yourself, but the moment you talk about it or start describing it, love becomes like a fresh loaf of bread gone hard.
Love is something which is meant to be felt and not analysed. The moment you analyse, love gets downgraded to either like or lust. If, from the flying plane, you look at the landscape below and figure out that you love the sight only because you see a river emerging between two mountains, then love becomes like. If you look below and wish you owned a piece of land by that river, love becomes lust. It is only when you fly over the landscape, breathing in every moment of its beauty without reasoning or wanting, that you know you are in love.
Love, therefore, is difficult to achieve. It is as rare as those moments when you happen to be in the window seat while the plane is flying low enough on its way to an exotic destination. Like and lust, on the other hand, are as common as a city coming into view as soon as the plane is about to land.
It's all about feeling it. Feeling each other is secondary. So why these thoughts on love? Because Valentine's Day is approaching and I thought I must do my bit. I hope to write more on the subject before February 14 comes knocking, but in the meantime please read this as well -- something I wrote four years ago.