Some may think it’s too late but thirties are the best times to approach the concept of love with at least a small amount of sanity. Between the platonic, transcendental idea of love in the twenties and the predominantly sexual one (or, so I assume) of the forties, thirties are the times when you can think of love as both physical and spiritual without being torn apart.
It’s the thirties when stop deifying the idea and begin to understand it in all its complexity – the supremacy of the one love, the inevitability of conflict; and coming to terms with a hierarchy vis a vis the singularity of love. It is when you have experience, more importantly confidence, to understand that the opposite of purity is multiplicity, and it is not a sin. It is the time when your vocabulary extends beyond purity and you find new words that are as real and demand a mention.
Thirties are not any easier, though. You are more experienced, but not any wiser. This is also the period when love has to give up its flight and learn to walk on the ground, when you have to learn how to merge poetry with the monthly EMI, when you have transition from aspiring for love to living with it. It is the time when you stop chasing love as out there to exploring the one that ‘is’.
Though any attempt to define the sentiment remains as fruitless, there is more clarity about the context. During the teen years, love is but only a force of nature. One believes that love needs to be displayed in all its potency, hearts need to be conquered and one has to be a burning testimonial to one’s feelings.
It’s only when you have settled down in life and got your feet on ground that you realise that the biggest ingredient of love is reciprocity. The love that is returned is love. For others, there are quite a few terms – stalking, harassing etc. You pick up the newspaper and see reports of crimes that can come only from a false idea of love, ones that are built around pursuing and winning.
It’s the thirties when you wrestle with the beast and have a first real chance of winning. Or, at least, of coming to terms with the nature of the beast.