If we produce the same chemical when we drink alcohol as we do when we are supposedly bonding with someone and the effects wear off in both sets of circumstance , how have we proven love actually exists?
Question was in response to the article, "Can you prove that love exists?"
Two different people actually responded to this article. The other said,
So if I have an argument with my wife, science will NEVER prove I still love my wife.
I did make an update to the article. I added the typical clarification that in science, "prove" just means "demonstration beyond a reasonable doubt". Nothing is ever absolutely 100% "proved".. all we have is a point where it's reasonable to reach a conclusion.
This is also common sense. When you drive to the supermarket, you can't 100% prove that you won't get attacked by bandits...but you assess information and data to the point where you can confidently reach that conclusion. We do this all the time.
It's an important point - the article should have answered the question - we "prove" love through hypothesis-testing and gathering concordant evidence. It'd be like asking, "how do raccoon footprints prove that raccoons exist?" (If we didn't already know they did) In an absolute sense, they don't, however, it does provide compelling evidence that there's this thing that produces the footprints, and we've put the "raccoon" label on it.
Another example might be pain. Science has a fairly in-depth understanding of what pain is, as well as precisely what chemicals and chemical reactions are involved. We can directly observe the responses the organism has (hopefully in extremely ethical conditions!) to these chemical reactions. We label that phenomenon "pain".
So yes, discovering the chemistry concordant with love is a demonstration of the phenomenon.
Your question may be more confused than that. Love isn't a status... it's not like a "friend" that's decided upon until it's revoked. Love is an emotion that varies over time. People fall in love, as well as fall out of love. They start caring deeply for people, and stop doing so. Simply listening to different people talk about their life experiences can testify to this.
One doesn't love one's wife continuously at the same level, any more than you're happy continuously. If you're having a loving argument, perhaps, but if you're having an angry argument with your wife, then at that moment, your emotional state is not "love". At that point, we're bound to find anger-related chemistry happening, instead of the love-related.
In the end, we're still talking about collecting evidence to demonstrate something. NGF is good physical evidence by the standards of evidence and investigation.
I'm not sure why people pick this particular hill to defend. Why is it such a big deal whether science can or cannot "prove love"? The reason why I'm addressing it, is that atheists are told basically, "There's things you believe in without proving them... such as love. It's the same with us and God."
It's factually incorrect, but at least I understand the point. With others, such as the second person, there's an additional level of intensity that science MUST NOT be able to demonstrate that love is real, as though we're entering sacred territory.