Yes, there is such a thing as un colpo di fulmine (love at first sight) and in rare cases, the smitten duo turn out to be all they claim to be as time marches on. Those are the success stories, albeit rare. More often a better description is chemistry at first sight, which is something that clouds our judgement. Don’t get me wrong, relationships can’t go beyond platonic if chemistry is lacking; however, there also needs to be the kind of substance and harmony that only comes with the time it takes for each person to reveal (through word and deed) who they really are.
Enter the art of seduction, the master model of which was Giacomo Casanova. While Casanova did teach us few positive strategies regarding winning another’s affection, his was mostly a negative model, because of his “usa e getta”, disposable approach to wooing lovers. The longest he ever stayed with anyone was three months, and the reason was because she presented more of a challenge to him than did the masses.
Instead, I prefer the approach of Italian psychiatrist and author Giacomo Dacquino. In his book “Seduzione” he makes a compelling case for why the art of seduction is an important part of falling in love. The bottom line is–it gives us TIME. The time we need to really get to know one another through dialogue, creativity, niceties, the building of mutual respect and eventually a deeper kind of love. In short, that is what he calls “courtship”, the very phase we all seem to be bypassing these days in our hurry to find a partner. The colpo di fulmine can cause us to skip this vital step of taking our time, and gives us a false step of intimacy (“I feel as if I have known you all my life”, etc). Once you have created an image of this instant chemistry person in your mind, you begin to discard signs that might pop up that go against this image of prince(ss) charming.
So when falling in love, remember Dacquino’s positive definition “seduction”–the magical gift of time through old fashioned courtship..