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Oriental culture bases its philosophy on the existence of seven core energy chakras. The fourth, called Anahata, is right in the center of the body, and corresponds to the heart.

Oriental philosophers assert that the frequency of love coincides exactly with the rhythmic movements of the heart, which is why, in that culture, love is directly associated with this organ.

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Since the dawn of Western Civilization the heart has been linked to love. The Egyptians, the Semites and other ancient cultures, for example, believed that the heart was the most important organ because love emanated from it, and the belief that this was life´s most important emotion was widely accepted.

Today we are able to analyze the relationship between the heart-love tandem in a more accurate and scientific way. And we can explain why, in the 21st century, most people continue to associate this superlative feeling with the cardiovascular system's most vital organ.

What Is Love?

Theologians, philosophers, poets, scientists, doctors, sophisticated figures, and just everyday people have all recognised love as humankind’s most important sentiment. We have all tried to define it. It might be said that there are as many definitions of love as there are lovers in the world.

Love has been called omnipotent, omniscient, omnipresent, almighty and eternal. For the religious, God is love.

True love is unconditional and eternal. To love is to make the loved one happy. If a loved one is not happy with their lover, the latter should help them to find someone to make them so. This is my concept of true love. Many say that such a feeling is impossible, or even that true love does not exist. I doubt, however, that there has been a single person in human history who has not uttered the word "love" at least once. I would argue that one of the ultimate human desires is to love, and to be loved.

Love is the most important positive energy in our lives. It is so primordial that it occupies an elevated place among our priorities. Life is more valuable than riches, titles, power, such that health, love and happiness are truly the most important treasures in life. And it is no less true that happiness cannot exist without love. Thus, we could say that love is the Alpha and the Omega, the beginning and the end of everything.

What is the heart?

For some 10,000 years the heart has been considered the body's most important organ. Since time immemorial it has been associated with the most important emotion in our lives: love. When the English scientist William Harvey discovered the circulation of the blood in 1628, the heart came to be viewed as a mere pump to move blood, and was relegated to a lower position. Since then the brain has come to be considered as the body's supreme organ. Despite this evidence, our grey matter is not associated with love.

Thus, why is it, 400 years later, that humanity still considers the heart the center of love?

Although the brain is the body’s most important organ in the body, the control center where all orders are transmitted, in the form of neuronal, hormonal or enzymatic impulses, the heart is its workhorse. It is the tireless, giving, fair and equitable engine. It is, without any doubt, the body's most efficient organ, functioning continuously from very early in our embryological lives until the very end of our existences.

The heart is giving, fair and equitable because it constantly supplies each cell of the body as needed, distributing oxygen, nutrients and energy. The flow that it generates, meanwhile, collects waste, to eliminate it by means of the kidney or the liver. The heart is sensitive to every emotion, and all positive or negative energy affects it, immediately.

Thus, when one in love sees the subject of his sublime sentiment, his pulse quickens, as his heart flutters. When the time is right, it sends blood to the face so that it blushes and glows, enticing the beloved. And its work transcends questions of Platonic love: when necessary, it also supplies sufficient blood for the amorous organs to perform their functions in an optimal and timely manner.

True love keeps the heart vigorous and healthy, which keeps the individual happy, enthusiastic and youthful.

"Behind every great man there is a great woman, and behind every great woman, there is a great love."

Conversely, when love is unrequited, or lost, the heart suffers and "breaks"; hence, the terms "heartbreak" and "a broken heart". Although it might seem a lie or an exaggeration, there are actually deaths due to broken hearts. Most suicides are due to this affliction.

It is for all these reasons that the heart and love are intimately related, as both are just, giving, generous and equitable, and constitute nothing less than the beginning and end of our existences.

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