Is it possible for two people to love each other without meeting? For example if two people were to meet on the Internet and fall in "love". Scientifically speaking love is based on pheromones and physical attraction so how can one love someone when physical and chemical attraction is taken out of the picture? According to scientists it should not be possible yet people claim that it happens all the time.

It depends on what you mean by love, but I can't think of any definition of love that would suggest it is impossible or even unlikely to fall in love with someone you interact with (a lot) on the internet. I don't think there's a (credible) scientist in the world who would say love between humans is based solely on pheromones, chemicals, and physical attraction. They might say that physical attraction, perhaps lust, is based largely on pheromones and various chemical and hormonal processes. But I think it's fair to say that, even so, people can be very physically attracted to (lust after) someone they see on the Internet (or TV or movie screen)--no pheromones detected!--and I'm sure part of that feeling of attraction has to do with the chemical and neural changes the beautiful images cause in them. (Just to take a crazy example, I suspect it is possible to feel very attracted to Catherine Zeta-Jones or George Clooney without meeting them in person--I'm just guessing here based on what other people tell me...)

Similarly, interacting with someone on the Internet will produce lots of chemical and neural changes in us, and some of these changes will be the basis for: thinking this person is really interesting and funny, feeling admiration and respect for the person, hoping the person feels the same way about you, sharing goals with the person, and also feeling sexual desire for the person. Sounds like love to me. What will be missing are any chemical signals the person releases (such as pheromones) as well as the feel of their touch (and the sound of their voice if you've been interacting only by type-chat). But these things are not necessary conditions for love, even if they may sometimes be significant factors in making people who meet each other in person feel an initial attraction for each other such that they are more likely to fall in love. And perhaps "matching" pheromones and such are even strong enough to keep some people together who probably shouldn't be.

The converse case is interesting: are there people who fall in love on the internet (and they are physically attracted to each other's visual appearance), but when they meet in person their pheromones and such "mismatch" enough to mess up their relationship (even to make them stop seeing the other as attractive)? Could Catherine Zeta-Jones have pheromones that would make her no longer attractive once one met her in person??

As a footnote, I'd perhaps want to press for being more careful with the distinction between loving another person and the state you are in when you fall in love with someone.

After all, you can love someone without being in love with them: that's how most of us -- other than Oedipus -- are with our mothers! And it is only too easy to fall in love with someone you don't really love -- you are obsessed, lustful, can't get them out of your mind, your heart leaps at their glance, but you don't really care for them in the right way. ("If you really loved her", we might have to say to the man obsessively in love, "you wouldn't treat her like that.")

But indeed, it doesn't seem that you have to get up close and personal either for genuine caring or to engender more obsessive states.

Read another response by Eddy Nahmias, Peter Smith
Read another response about Love