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The Hidden Meaning Behind Cupid’s Arrow

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Eros, the god of love in Greek mythology and known as Cupid to the Romans, challenged the face of time and the future pathways of others with his political meddling of emotions and also has a love story of his own with Psyche.  

At times in our lives from our first love to early dating and more, it is a pleasure to be in awe of another and feel love struck. We become enamoured with a warm glow and stunned and dazed into an impulsive nature.  

What else can we take from the concept of Cupids emotional and political actions?  

As an emotional intelligence teacher and positive psychology practitioner, I am fascinated by all things emotional and optimum human functioning.  

It all begins with our ego and the depth of meaning behind our needs and values and causality of our actions. 

Our ego is a mental construct and a story we tell ourselves of who we believe we are. Our ego builds from the stories we hear and resonate with in the world around us from our upbringing to the media, all the way to the way we engage and interact with others as we grow older.

Our ego will fight to stay alive and be a guiding strong arm and impulse for our potential future actions. Our egos needs’ and values can be compared to Cupids arrow as it drives us forward to take action without us often realising why we do what we do and based on impulse and egotistical needs.  

The ego often compares itself to others and you are either better or worse than those around you. An example of this could be identifying yourself as wealthier than another and if you enter the company of others with bigger assets then your need and value of wealth have been harmed.  

In the same manner, like Eros and Cupid, our ego drives us to impulsive actions based on emotional needs and values. 

How then can we identify what our ego needs compared to our true self and what is good for us? We can learn to become the observer of our ego and understand when Cupids arrow has struck.  

We can imagine putting all the things we identify ourselves with in the world into a metaphorical shopping basket. Those things do not define who we are and are simply a mental construct.  

Emotional intelligence teaches us that when we feel happy our needs and values have often been met. When we feel unhappy our needs and values have often not been met. A need-based on our ego may be the need to be more beautiful than others and a value may be having nicer things.  

A need-based on our true self may be the need for autonomy and a value may be valuing close connections with others.  

Understanding the deeper meaning behind Cupid’s arrow can bring greater freedom and a choice of actions that benefits our well-being and our true self.  

As Edith Hamilton eloquently suggests that Cupid and Psyche after many trials found each other. The true self of each was revealed and was detached from Cupid’s game.  

David Chorlton is a positive psychology practitioner, emotional intelligence teacher, and mindfulness teacher. 


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