The Greek gods, however, were jealous, because this creature with four arms could work harder; with its two faces, it was always vigilant and could not be taken by surprise; and its four legs meant that it could stand to walk for long periods at a time without tiring. Even more dangerous was the fact that the creature had two different sets of sex organs and so needed no one else in order to continue reproducing.
Zeus, the supreme lord of Olympus, said: ‘I have a plan to make these mortals lose some of their strength.’
And he cut the creature in two with a lightning bolt, thus creating man and woman. This greatly increased the population of the world, and at the same time, disoriented and weakened its inhabitants, because now they had to search for their lost half and embrace it and, in that embrace, regain their former strength, their ability to avoid betrayal and the stamina to walk for long periods of time and to withstand hard work. That embrace in which the two bodies re-fuse to become one again is what we call sex.”
“Human beings were once divided and now seek the embrace that will reunite them. That is our instinct. But it is also our reason for putting up with all the difficulties we meet in that search.
I want you to look at me, but I want you to take care that I don’t notice. Initial desire is important because it is hidden, forbidden, not permitted. You don’t know whether you are looking at your lost half or not; she doesn’t know either, but something is drawing you together, and you must believe that it is true you are each other’s ‘other half.”