What Makes Us Love? What makes us love? This question has been studied for centuries by philosophers, scientists, and even writers in search of a sensible answer. Shakespeare, for one, explored many ideas to justify love. In his play, “A Midsummers Night Dream”, he lists various thoughts on what he thinks causes people to love. Some are overwhelmingly ridiculous, while others make some sense. One of his far-fetched answers as to how people fall in love was Cupid. He believed Cupid would shoot his arrows of love into individuals, and they would magically fall for the next person they saw.
“Cupid all armed. A certain aim he took/At a fair vestal throned by the west,/ and loosed his love-shaft smartly from his bow (2.1.163-65).” After the shot, the person wouldnt know what hit them. He intertwines this thought with the concept that one falls in love after looking in anothers eyes. After missing a shot, one of Cupids arrows hit a flower, tainting it with his powers to make people fall in love. When placed in a persons eyes, they will be infatuated with the next thing they see.
For example, after being placed in his Lysanders eyes, his immense love for Hermia grows weak with just one look into Helenas eyes. Shakespeares thought here is that eyes have all the power over who we fall for. Do not misunderstand him, though. His usage of this enchanting juice is not to be taken seriously. He is trying to make a point, and at that, a good one.
Looking into someones eyes had a certain power over ones feelings. You just get a strong feeling in your heart. It is uncontrollable, and sometimes, it truly is one of the main reasons we fall in love. However, he contradicts himself in act one when Helena says, “Love looks not with the eye, but with the mind (1.1.240).” He now states that the mind is what the person falls in love with, and not the eyes. It is true, however; you have to love a persons thoughts and ideas before you can feel that special passion for them.
That is the key to true love. Although he had extremely different thoughts on the reasons we fall in love, they all made some sense. By contradicting his explanations, he, in my opinion, is making a point. Hes pointing out the fact that he, too, doesnt really know the answer to the question of what makes us love. And he knows that no one ever will.