Welcome to the Spring issue of Meniscus Magazine.
The fortuitous date of this issue’s release of February 14
left us no choice but to dedicate the issue to love. So be it. “What
we need is love,” summarized perfectly by one of the martyrs
or our counterculture, Bob Marley. “Don’t need no war,
don’t need no trouble. Speak happiness, make love.”
What is love? Good question. As Melissa Bator explores
in Libra Seeking
Balance, it is a question that rests on our minds continually
until you have found your mate. And that’s just the beginning.
Love not only implies the romantic eroticism of
Eros. True love should permeate every aspect of your life, every
day of the year. It is the ever-pervasive, omni-present capacity
we all have to feel compassion for the rest of man- and
Everyone goes through a stage in life to discover
what love feels like. You’ve either been in love or you haven’t.
If you’ve been there you know it. Love is unmistakable.
It begins with sweaty hands and anticipation of
encountering that person of special interest. Then as you close
in on her proximity, magnetism pricks your emotions like a goad.
You can think of nothing but what it would be like to touch this
Freckles, Wesley Ratko relays the anticipation of rediscovering
your long-lost lover. A man would endure the longest bus ride ever,
to the middle of nowhere, for a summer spent with the young lady
of his dreams.
Then the passion begins, and sparks fly. Maybe it
will be a fling; maybe she’s the one. Either way, as Pete
Pidgeon discusses in Love
at 100, you should look at the most beautiful things about
that relationship and live for those.
When the dynamic sexual tension is broken, the element
of touch brings the relationship to an entirely different place.
Deep and involved conversations into the wee hours of the morning
build themselves into passionate releases of heart-throbbing lovemaking,
and the puzzle is complete. (Although as Mr. Ruggles alludes to
in Sex, Not Just
for Teenagers, there’s more than one position the
puzzle pieces fit into!)
When you’re with that perfect person—even
if its perfect for just that moment—love is inexplicable and
complete, as Sarah Erdreich explains in The
Guy Next Door. You can sit with her in your arms, eyes
lost gazing into each other’s souls, and time stops—the
rest of the world no longer matters. The touch of your lips upon
her neck brings a shiver to her spine as you embrace with reckless
There is perhaps no greater calling than to find
your soulmate. It comes down to the most fundamental instinct on
Maslow’s Human Needs Hierarchy: the need to procreate. Mike
Kirkpatrick knows more about this than anyone I know right now.
The consummate union of two people’s love brings with it the
grandest gift nature has to offer: another person to love. It may
be a daunting endeavor, but as Kpat will tell you “Don’t
Think Twice, It’s Alright.”
While the propagation instinct is built into all
species, the entire animal kingdom does not hold the physiological
capacity to love. Your cat may act as a romantic troubadour as he
passionately licks the neck of his feline companion, but not all
animals have such tendencies.
Looking at the biology of the brain, not all creatures
have the faculty of love. (Thank God we do!) In fact, before the
reptiles evolved into child-bearing mammals, it is uncertain if
any life on the earth could sustain such an emotion. The physiology
involved came about when the reptilian brain, or brain stem, was
joined by the limbic brain. The evolution of this structure marked
several advancements, among those, the awareness of the young.
The disposition of the parent animal, towards their
offspring, is a good indicator of the emotional connection involved.
For example, reptiles simply drop their eggs into a nest somewhere
and walk away. If the mother is lucky enough to be around when the
young hatch, she may be in for a tasty snack. The willingness to
eat your own baby, is probably a good indication that the maternal
love is not there.
Another evolution that came along with the limbic
brain, is the ability of the young to verbalize the displeasure
of being left without the parent animal. For example, when you take
a baby gecko from its mother, it does nothing. When you take a baby
kitten from its mother, it will cry out in loneliness, indicating
that feeling is there.
But we all know that love doesn’t come from
the brain. It comes from the heart.
Finding and spreading love is a lifelong task we
should all continue with fervor. Evolution has brought us this miraculous
power, and the progress of humanity depends on spreading it further.
Perhaps the most important sociological feat to
tackle as a race, is to release the reservoirs of agape love accumulated
in the beautiful souls of our world. If we can discharge
this unconditional love for others, we can tackle so many of the
ills that currently plague our world like war, starvation, and religious
battles, right down to social issues like healthcare and divorce.
So please take your time to flip through the virtual
pages of the Spring issue, #3 of Meniscus Magazine. Our beautiful
contributors have given us many angles on the subject that we think
about constantly. It is my hope that you’ll take with you
the empowerment to channel the potent love from the universe, through
your heart to everyone you meet.
Please, embrace. That’s what we offer each
PS- Special thoughts out to Gilbert Hostler and
Senhora Patriota, for their speedy recovery.