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llovetwilight
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Post by llovetwilight »

I agree with December's thoughts on the love between B/E being irrevocable. I think the main reason SM used Emily and Sam as an example when she explained her feelings to Jake was to put it to him on a level that he could understand and couldn't deny. Jake understands (even better than Bella thanks to the pack mind-reading thing), how much it hurt Sam to let go of Leah and to see her have to go through so much pain because of him. And as much as Bella cared for Jake and could have made a good life with him' She can't, she won't. Because her love for Edward overpowers even her strong desire to stay and raise a family with Jake. I think that SM used the example of Sam and Emily, not to make us question the bond between Bella and Edward, but almost the exact opposite. She wanted us see how truly unbreakable the bond between them is.
Truelove1 wrote:For me the difference boils down to this-for vampire love (and I include Bella here) the love happens and once it does, it never ends. There is choice, in the beginning. For imprinting, there is never any choice for the imprinter. There seems to be some force of predestination involved; they just have to lay their eyes on that person to 'find out' who it is. This is the difference that sets up the opposition for me in the statement.

I agree with your thoughts regarding the difference between vampire love and imprinting! I too, prefer the Vampire love over imprinting. With vampire love, the courting process is similar to that of human love. There is an act of choice, of 'falling in love' and once that happens, the vampires (in this case human and vampire) are connected forever. So romantic!

BUT where we might see things differently is in the 'force of predestination' area. I am not quite sure how I feel about this, so forgive me if what follows is a bit muddled'

I feel, like you, that Bella and Edward's connection defies reason. Why, when he barely knows her and really wants to feed on her, should Edward think 'not her' when Tyler's van was about to smash into Bella? Why is Bella so intrigued by Edward even though he treats her like the plague? These two were connected before they could even begin to realize it themselves. I think that it could be argued that their love was also predestined' fate. Now here is where my thinking starts to get muddled and my brain starts to hurt: Was Edward and Bella's love always 'written in the stars' , as imprinting is? We know that Vampires fall in love the same way humans do' so there is definitely a choice involved. But was Edward always meant to live beyond 1918, in the form of an unchanging vampire, so that he could find his soul mate in Bella? One of my favorite dialogues from Twilight is:

'For almost 90 years I've walked among my kind, and yours' all the time thinking I was complete in myself, not realizing what I was seeking. And not finding anything, because you weren't alive yet.'
'It hardly seems fair,' I whispered, my face still resting on his chest, listening to his breath come and go. 'I haven't had to wait at all. Why should I get off so easily?'
'You're right,' he agreed with amusement. 'I should make this harder for you, definitely' . You only have to risk your life every second you spend with me, surely that's not much. You only have to turn your back on nature, on humanity' what's that worth?'


Edward had to wait 90 years to find Bella, and when he finally does, she has to risk her life just to be near him. They both have to make very serious choices in order to be around each other. So is this fate or just life? Was Edward bound to find someone to love eventually, just by being alive so long? Was Bella just drawn to him because she too, was a sort of social 'outcast' , as Edward is? Or was there something else, some stronger force involved?

I tend to think the latter. I can't see how this pair could be so drawn (Renee refers to it as gravity) to one another right from the start, if that wasn't the case. For me though, that doesn't make their love any less potent. Quite the opposite actually, it makes it all the more unique and special. Against so many odds, they commit to be together, to make it work. I can't help but think that, although unlike imprinting they had the choice whether or not to follow their hearts, Bella and Edward's love is similar to imprinting in the fact that it is undeniable and was always meant to be.
I'm really glad Edward didn't kill you. Everything's so much more fun with you around."- Emmett to Bella, EC

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LisaCullenAZ
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Post by LisaCullenAZ »

llovetwilight said:
I think the main reason SM used Emily and Sam as an example when she explained her feelings to Jake was to put it to him on a level that he could understand and couldn't deny.


I fully agree with that. I also wonder, though, if Bella consciously chose to use this particular example of imprinting because she hoped it might lessen the pain for Jacob. Do you think Bella might have been aware that putting her choice of Edward into an imprinting example lessened the value of the choice itself? And this might be why she chose to word it in such a way? For the off-chance that it might therefore lessen the feeling of rejection for Jake?

It's not hard for me to imagine that Bella may have intended to soften the blow for Jacob a little by choosing to use the Sam/Emily illustration. Just a thought, though.
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December
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Post by December »

LisaCullenAZ -- I love the thought that Bella might actually be downplaying the strength of her bond with Edward in this way to make it a little less hurtful for Jake. Not just putting it in terms he'd understand, but undercutting her own sense of what the difference really is.

ILoveTwilight --It would be really horrible to think that the passion you feel for your beloved was like imprinting: some kind of biological imperative, or a fairy spell cast over you like Midsummer Night's Dream (!). True love is an expression of ourselves: organic, internal -- it's about who we are. And given the (possibly illusory?) feeling we have that these selves are free, the idea that true love could be predestined seems a contradiction in terms. But this is partly a matter of how you place the emphasis. The idea of the Platonic union of souls of the sort you are talking about -- two people out of all the billions alive who are somehow meant for each other -- seems ok, I think, because it stresses the idea of discovering the person for whom you are fated rather than the compulsion implicit in this idea of fatedness. (Or do you all find the Platonic ideal also problematic? Myself, I find it psychologically unrealistic, but not disturbing as an ideal).

But actually, I think that when Bella says she has no choice about loving Edward, she is not talking about any of these things.I think that when Bella says she has no choice about loving Edward, what she is getting at is the impossibility of getting over loving someone like Edward, someone supernatural, someone who isn't from the rational world at all. Not that her love for Edward is some force acting on her from outside, or predestined, or arbitrary, but that having happened, it is permanent, in a way that ordinary human love (as has been discussed a lot) isn't. She has been touched by something and its mark is indelible. So in some sense, yes she doesn't really have a choice.

Truelove1
-- you wondered whether the idea that Bella couldn't help herself was meant to somehow get her off the hook for the love triangle she finds herself in, and for "leaving poor sweet Jacob". I actually thought you could see it as absolving her not so much for abandoning Jacob, but for choosing to give up her life for Edward. Can I quote here what I wrote somewhere before?

"In a sense, what we see in Eclipse is not, in the end, Bella choosing Edward. What she has done is to confirm, painfully but indisputably, the truth of her first melodramatic teenager's declaration "I was unconditionally and irrevocably in love with him." (TW p.195). Throughout Eclipse, part of Bella (perhaps an unconscious part) is trying very hard to choose not to be with Edward, to stay human, to live the life she could have lived if she'd never met him. And she fails, because the pull of this preternatural love is too strong. Edward was in fact her destiny, as she calls him; she didn't have a choice. But all the misery that Bella, and Edward and Jake have gone through was not in vain, because now she knows she has no choice. When the moment comes when she has to say goodbye to her friends, her family, her home, her human future, her body and maybe even her soul, she will not be tormented by might-have-beens.

"Actually, I'm beginning to think (is this perverse?) that you can look at what happens in Eclipse as absolving Bella of having chosen Edward. Of being free to choose at all. Maybe this is perverse. We know that Stephenie has said that the idea of free will and choice is very important to her. Nevertheless the books stand, whatever she may have intended.

"I see it this way. Bella goes a long way down the road of choosing to stay with Jacob: pretty well as far as she can possibly go without actually choosing him (and some might argue farther!). And Edward in some sense colludes with this, because part of him wants Bella to have another choice than a living death with him. In a way he all but pushes her into Jake's arms. Ok, I'm exaggerating, but still: he leaves the door wide open for her to choose Jacob and live. But in the end she finds she has no choice but to stay with Edward and die. Is Bella choosing? In one sense yes, she is like anyone who looks into their heart to find what they really feel, and then acts on it. This is what we do when we choose.

"But the way Stephenie tells Bella's story, the way Bella herself describes her love for Edward, you can't help feeling that Bella is transfixed, unfree to choose: that it is not just a preference but something like a compulsion. Or as Jake describes it (help! can't put my finger on the reference), an addiction. This can get us quickly into very deep philosophical waters: are there kinds of wants which make us unfree (addiction for example, or irrational feelings, or maybe pain (I don't mean wanting pain, but relief from it)?) But anyway, when Bella says she knows who she can't live without, it just doesn't read to me like the need that ordinary mortal lovers feel for each other (overwhelming as that is). This is "something stronger, something so overwhelming it could not exist in a rational world" (Ec p.599). Something that means she can never choose otherwise. Seen this way, what has happened to Bella by the end of Eclipse looks less like choosing than the recognition of her own unfreedom."

Life with Edward -- or rather living death with Edward -- is the only choice she can live with. Bella doesn't make up her mind in Eclipse; she discovers it. But this doesn't make it any less a mark of the strength of her love for Edward that she counts the world well lost for him.


Edited to brush away typographical creepy-crawlies.
Last edited by December on Thu Mar 27, 2008 8:52 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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llovetwilight
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Post by llovetwilight »

LisaCullenAZ wrote:It's not hard for me to imagine that Bella may have intended to soften the blow for Jacob a little by choosing to use the Sam/Emily illustration.
I think you are right, and that she did want to "lessen" the blow, although I think that she knew that in the end there really wasn't any way to do that... choosing Edward was going to crush Jake no matter what.

But I am not sure if the imprinting comparison actually lessened the value of the choice (in Bella's eyes)... but just made it that much harder for Jake (and for herself) to deny it- does that make sense? It seems like connecting her feelings for Edward to that of Emily and Sam's, Bella is able to accurately describe to Jake the pain she feels in making the choice... and that is how she tries to lessen the blow. By telling Jake just how hard it is for her to say goodbye to him, how much it hurts her to do it, she is showing him just how strong her love for Edward is.

If I were in Jake's shoes, I would feel better (maybe not much, but at least a little!) knowing that Bella really loved me. At least that way, I would know that what she chose over me was special and necessary for her to truly have happiness. How could Jake not realize just how connected Edward and Bella are after knowing how she felt about him but still left anyways?

Sorry for the rambling post! I hope some of it made sense...

That was my really long-winded version of trying to say: I think the imprinting example strengthened the value of Bella's choice...

ETA
December wrote:I think that when Bella says she has no choice about loving Edward, what she is getting at is the impossibility of getting over loving someone like Edward, not that her love for Edward is some force acting on her from outside, or predestined, or arbitrary, but that having happened, it is permanent, in a way that ordinary human love (as has been discussed a lot) isn't. She has been touched by something and its mark is indelible. So in some sense, yes she doesn't really have a choice.
What I've bolded is a big light bulb for me!!! I think you are exactly right... which goes back to the vampire love Trulove1 talks about.

All of the courting and falling in love was just as it is for humans (minus the part where the boy is unhuman, of course!) BUT once they fell in love... they fell in love for good. End of story. Sure, she (being human) can have feelings for someone else (which we see in EC)... but they will always be in addition to her love for Edward. Feelings for Jake (or anyone else) would never overshaddow her love for Edward, never be able to replace it. And that is where she "has no choice", neither does Edward actually. No matter what happens... they will always be connected to each other more than they are to anyone else.
I'm really glad Edward didn't kill you. Everything's so much more fun with you around."- Emmett to Bella, EC

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Amo
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Post by Amo »

La lengua latinam!!

Odi et amo. Quare id faciam fortasse requiris.
Nescio, sed fieri sentio, et excrucior


Odi et amo la lenguam, quod amo hic librum!

You may note the username...
Regretted not using "amat" or "amans" afterwards.

Vah!!
Vale,
Amo

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Post by indi »

Amo wrote:La lengua latinam!!

Odi et amo. Quare id faciam fortasse requiris.
Nescio, sed fieri sentio, et excrucior


Odi et amo la lenguam, quod amo hic librum!

You may note the username...
Regretted not using "amat" or "amans" afterwards.

Vah!!
Vale,
Amo
Hmmkay, let me see.

I hate and I love. Wherefore perhaps this having required ....
I don't know. Facians and requiris look like participles here... they're confusing me.

I do not know, but I feel (and are you intending this to be an infinitive, passive of facio?) to become? (thats the definition of fio...), and more tortured (the comparative of excrucio...)


I feel confused....It was fun, but confusing... but maybe I suck at Latin. In Latin class right now we're translating Cicero's Pro Archia, and its only slightly better than Caesar's De Belle Gallico. That made me cry. LOL
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December
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Post by December »

I hate and I love. Why do I do this, perhaps you ask?
I do not know, but I feel it happening, and I suffer.

(Catullus)

____________________________________________________________

ILT -- I'm intrigued by the paradoxical idea that the stronger Bella's love for Jake appears to him, the deeper still he will realize her love for Edward must be. I guess it makes sense, since at the end of the day, she chooses Edward. However tremendous the value you place on Jake's love, her love for Edward outstrips it.
IloveTwilight wrote:And that is where she "has no choice", neither does Edward actually.
Gosh. Somehow it's easy to forget about this. How her doom is his doom (if you want to take the melancholy view of this). Which does make me wonder about the asymmetry in the way we are looking at Bella's choice (or is it just late and I'm getting fuddled?). That is: Bella has no choice but to love Edward -- therefore her life without him will be a misery -- therefore she has no choice but to stay with him -- and give up her life to do so. But the same is true of Edward, except that he is not the one who has to make the sacrifice Bella has to make, and therefore would never permit himself to think this way. But it makes his ambivalence about fighting for her and wishing to see her free of this snare that much keener.
Last edited by December on Thu Nov 01, 2007 6:19 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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LisaCullenAZ
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Post by LisaCullenAZ »

llovetwilight wrote:
But I am not sure if the imprinting comparison actually lessened the value of the choice (in Bella's eyes)... but just made it that much harder for Jake (and for herself) to deny it- does that make sense? It seems like connecting her feelings for Edward to that of Emily and Sam's, Bella is able to accurately describe to Jake the pain she feels in making the choice... and that is how she tries to lessen the blow. By telling Jake just how hard it is for her to say goodbye to him, how much it hurts her to do it, she is showing him just how strong her love for Edward is.
I know what you are saying with the bolded part. Yes, you make sense :)

And I love the rest of it, too! That's exactly what I was thinking...

You know, I've been thinking about the concept of a life without your true love as being a fate worse than death.

It's made me think of Dumbledore's never-ending claim that "there are fates worse than death" and that losing your soul (via a dementor, not a vampire, in the Potterverse) is much much worse than death itself.

So: losing your soul = fate worse than death?

Then let me insert: Edward = Bella's Soul.

I sort of get that from the "Sally, I AM Heathcliff!" bit from Wuthering Heights. Bella IS Edward, and vice versa. Loosing Edward would cost Bella her soul. More so than becoming a vampire would...

Am I being coherent? Or just really really off?
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TrueLove1
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Post by TrueLove1 »

December Wrote:

quote]Life with Edward -- or rather living death with Edward -- is the only choice she can live with. Bella doesn't make up her mind in Eclipse; she discovers it.[/quote]

Exactly-

Through my re-reading of Eclipse and our discussions here on the lex, this is the conclusion that I have come to: What is happening to Bella, (I have written this somewhere but can't remember which thread now) when she says she never had a choice is her own hearts recognition of the unbreakable bond between her and Edward. I agree with all of you in this.

She really isn't 'choosing' Edward; is she? She never says it to Edward, of course she says it to Jake though, and that's what all of this is about. Regardless- she never says to Edward that there was no choice to make, and I wish she had for his sake. In the end I think we all agree that once Bella and Edward fell in love, there could be no other for all of the reasons that December, Ilovetwilight, and LisaCullen have stated above. Given this--what do you all think about Edward's statement to Bella after the night of sobbing, where he asks her-'did you make the right choice?'

She doesn't clarify, even then, that there was no choice to make. So there was a choice, but it was not between Edward and Jacob. My contention is that the choice is really about Bella leaving LIFE behind. She has finally faced up to the hard realizations that she has continuously pushed aside because she 'didn't have to' think about those things yet, or there was no use in thinking about painful things until she had to. This is Bella's mindset all the time. She has made up her mind about something; but she will not dwell on the implications until absolutely necessary. When she is with Jake and realizes the hurt she has caused by putting off dealing with this issue, it all comes crashing down on her. So she does love Jake, yes, but as she articulates herself, it will never be enough. She always knew that. So in the end her only real choice is: Edward and death, or Edward and living life as a human with him. The grief comes from Bella at the realization of what her choice of Edward and death really means. She has to grieve her own loss at the choice she has already made. So maybe that's why Edward is still insecure after that scene (thinking about final meadow scene)-he is thinking the choice was between him and Jacob. She has spent the night sobbing in his arms about all of her mistakes and coming to terms with the enormity of her decision in addition to causing both Edward and Jake pain. She doesn't tell him this is what it's about. She doesn't dispute him when he says did you make the right CHOICE. She is thinking about the choice to give up her humanity, he is thinking her giving up Jake.

NoWorries
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Post by NoWorries »

LisaCullenAZ wrote:I sort of get that from the "Sally, I AM Heathcliff!" bit from Wuthering Heights. Bella IS Edward, and vice versa. Loosing Edward would cost Bella her soul. More so than becoming a vampire would...

Am I being coherent? Or just really really off?

I tend to shy away from all matters of romantic compulsion, however I DO agree with what you're saying, in a sense, as well as I also have to accept that there is something considerably different (obviously) about the nature of "choice" within the context of Bella/Edward**

Allow me to rewind -- and hopefully not to misquote:

December I believe it was you who postulated that vampire love was like human love in that a choice must first me made in order for the love to follow - or to be allowed, as it were. I agree with this entirely. In this case, however, I think the onus of choice AT FIRST was laid more squarely on the shoulders of Edward, rather than those of Bella. Edward had to consciously choose *not* to kill Bella (for whatever reason, diatribe on fatalism to follow later in post, I'm sure). He mentions -- and here I will assume honesty on his part -- that his initial decision to spare Bella was born of righteous indignation; something along the lines of; "[paraphrase]Who were you, an insignificant human, to drive me away from a place I was reasonably settled and threaten my family." Following from that decision was a, shall we say, morbid fascination with not only her dramatic allure, sanguinely speaking, but also with her ability to inspire in him a very compelling desire to jeopardize all that he had worked for in terms of morality, as well as the family unit around which he centered himself. From this fascination is ultimately born the love that his choices -- however conscious/unconscious of their nature -- allowed to develop.

In this scenario, Bella's choices were relatively minor at first: she had to choose to accept his "eccentric" behavior, before understanding its motivations. As a result of that decision -- and an equivalent fascination with the feelings and actions that Edward inspired in her -- her love for Edward was allowed to develop such that she was able to cement said love with the ultimate choice to remain in a relationship with a guy she knew to lust for her blood.

But the fact remains that, without Edward's initial choice, Bella would never gotten the opportunity to make her own. She would have been aperitif.

With that drawn out explanation of my choice position, I must concede the folowing: I find it difficult to swallow that either would have been able to / desirious of making the necessary choices if there weren't a larger compulsion to convince them. This, I suppose, we can call fate. Of some sort, at least. I'm not prepared to assert, however -- nor do I find particular evidence to do so -- that this fate is 100% unchangeable. i.e. I believe that "compulsion" within the context of Bella/Edward is more like inspiration, rather that inevitability. There was something which enabed them to make the decisions necessary, without actually *insisting* that they do so.

The point of this is to say that I DO believe there was choice in the development of the relationship between Bella /Edward, and that this choice can coexist within a larger context of, may I call it, "inspirational fate".

This allows me to become comfortable with (although, you know, still abit rankled by) Bella's statement about not having a choice -- BECAUSE I think that, at the point to which their relationship had progressed, choice was, in a manner, removed. The choice was to allow the behaviors resulting in mutual romantic love, but with the vampire caveat that, once said love occurs, there is no going back.

Thus, by excessive rationalization, Bella can say that she never had a choice because she'd already made it by allowing herself the behaviors that made her fall in love with Edward. After that, I'm okay with some semblance of irrevocability (vampire-love is forever, as, apparently, is Bella-love for Edward) because it elevates Bella/Edward above the realm of purely fatalistic romance -- as in imprinting.

Long story short (and in Bella-talking-to-Jake-oversimplification): Bella and Edward chose to imprint on one another.
_________________________________

**What is the official mashup of these two: Belward or Bedward?



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