C.S. Lewis has interesting things to say on love and marriage in the The Screwtape Letters. Senior demon Screwtape writes letters to his junior demon nephew Wormwood on how to take humans from "the Enemy" being God, toward "Our Father" being Satan:
Now comes the joke. The Enemy described a married couple as 'one flesh'. He did not say a 'happily married couple' or 'a couple who married because they were in love', but you can make the humans ignore that. You can also make them forget that the man they call Paul did not confine it to married couples. Mere copulation, for him, makes 'one flesh'. You can thus get the humans to accept as rhetorical eulogies of 'being in love' what were in fact plain descriptions of the real significance of sexual intercourse. The truth is that whenever a man lies with a woman, there, whether they like it or not, a transcendental relation is set up between them which must be eternally enjoyed or eternally endured. From the true statement that this transcendental relation was intended to produce, and, if obediently entered into, too often will produce, affection and the family, humans can be made to infer the false belief that the blend of affection, fear and desire which they call 'being in love' is the only thing that makes marriage either happy or holy. The error is easy to produce because 'being in love' does very often, in Western Europe, precede marriages which are made in obedience to the Enemies designs, that is, with the intention of fidelity, fertility and good will; just as religious emotion very often, but not always, attends conversion. (emphasis mine)When we come from the place that elevates "being in love", a temporary feeling which should not be confused with love, to the pinnacle of human experience, we create an environment where the loss of the feeling of "being in love" can be used as an excuse for all sorts of behaviors destructive to marriage, including infidelity. After all, God wants us to be "happy", right? Right?
Politically correct research
You never know when you are going to run into examples of political correctness when it comes to the differences between the genders. I attended a dissertation defense on Friday in preparation for my own defense one of these days. The study being defended examined a certain type of knee injury in sports that is more commonly experienced by women than by men, the anterior cruciate ligament, or ACL tear. The researcher outlined the anatomic and kinematic differences between men and women related to this injury. Basically, men tend to land from a jump in more knee flexion than women due to different factors, not the least of which is better balance between the quadriceps and hamstring muscles (ie; women tend to overly rely on their quads resulting in greater knee extension upon landing). And, the ACL is more at risk for injury in extension.
The researcher then went on to describe the study she carried out which involved a way to change landing kinematics such that the women in the study had more knee flexion when landing. After her presentation the audience had the opportunity to as her questions and one of the female anatomy profs asked the following question; "In essence aren't you trying to masculinize these women's movement patterns?" I thought to myself that was true, and that it would make sense to do so to a certain degree if the goal is to prevent ACL injuries among female athletes. But, the researcher answered, "Well, I suppose you could look at it that way, but I prefer not to. It is, in a sense, true, but it isn't appropriate to consider the findings in that manner". The prof who asked the question nodded her approval and from the back of the room I could observe several other profs shaking their heads a bit. Brilliant! Never mind the truth if it makes you uncomfortable to think of it in that way or you find it "inappropriate". We can't imply that men in any way have any inherent superiority to women, now can we?