It Looks Like Love Potions Will Soon Be A Reality
The concept of a love potion – a drink that literally makes someone fall in love with you – has long been rife in science fiction and fantasy stories, but I doubt any of us thought that it would ever actually exist in real life.
Featured Image VIA
This might not be the case though, with renowned neuroscientist Dr. Anders Sandberg of the University of Oxford thinking that it might happen within ten years. Sandberg proposes that our babies can’t look after themselves and develops his theory from there:
We humans have really hopeless babies, unlike baby horses, who can walk a few hours after getting born.
So from an evolutionary point of view, we need to make sure parents stay together to give their offspring the best chance of survival. That’s where pair-bonding systems come into play.
The thing that really creates a bond together is the dopamine system. Many of the symptoms are similar to taking a stimulant effect.
You have a dopamine release in your frontal lobe, and this causes you to recognise that this is someone who you should be around, who you should feel close to.
The reason you miss your partner – and specifically their smell – is because releases corticotropin-releasing hormone (CPH) when they’re not around.
A good love drug would need to affect the right part of the brain by stimulating these systems. We don’t have any proper love drugs yet.
We’re already much better at understanding brains and how to model brain circuitry than we used to be and within ten years I would be very surprised if we didn’t know how to modulate this problem.
The classic love potion, which makes you fall in love with someone just because you drank the potion, is certainly problematic. From an ethics point of view, if love potions like this existed, they’d really be quite horrifying date rape drugs, in essence.
New drugs should in my opinion only be used to strengthen existing relationships.
When you’re already in love with someone, emotions can change over time.
What if there was a way of topping up that love that might be starting to fade?
Well, at least he pointed out how utterly disgusting the idea of a love potion actually is in terms of comparing it to a date rape drug.
If it did actually exist, would people want to use it? Actually scratch that, I already know that the majority of the male population wouldn’t have any problem using it, which is kinda sad, but something we all know is probably true. Sandberg’s idea of using it to ‘top up’ feelings is nice, but if this potion does ever actually come into existence, I doubt it’ll be used like that. I dread to think of the possibilities really and hope it never does to be honest.
For more love, check out the ten greatest love letters of all time. There are other ways to make someone fall in love with you you know.