What is Love?

Kirill Bedenkov
3 min readJun 21, 2022

“Love is composed of single soul inhabiting two bodies” — Aristotle

“The Lovers II” by Rene Magritte

I was always fascinated by the concept of love and its interconnectivity with the enigma of meaning.

I used to immerse myself into the melancholic pseudo-reality and rummage for the definitive answers. The answers which were shaped by contradicting to each other literary pieces, either intertwined with romanticism (such as “The Great Gatsby” or “Romeo and Juliet”), nihilistic philosophical doctrines (such as Nietzche’s choice of friendship over love), or maybe enlightening but simultaneously perplexing in its nature works on the ubiquity of love and subconscious (such as Carl Jung’s analysis of the neuroscience of romanticised love).

After reading an abundance of contravening material, the seed of incomprehension was planted in my mind.

Love? What defines it? Happiness? But what is happiness? The bursts of hormones and neurotransmitters such as dopamine that we share with someone in an ultimately naive attempt to fulfill our natural desire for joy?

But doesn’t the fact of existing on this planet and being alive incarnate perfection we all search for despite the borders of time? But does it matter if time is just a concept? If it’s not linear in the domain of space, likewise Einstein suggested, our past, present and future are just stubborn limitations of our imagination. Thereat, one might challenge the definition of being alive and its conventions. If one has no purpose, doesn’t that make him dead? Yet, we may argue that purpose is the joy which bounds to the happiness, subsequently intertwining with love.

Therefore, everything is a part of an endless cycle — the merciless motion of life which steps upon sinful souls to cross the bridge of ambiguity and nothingness. Hence, we are nothing more but phantoms of a wholesome being who are destined to never find the answers to the questions of Why and Who. All we have and are defined by are not a matter and our deeds but rather feelings which are universal and metaphysical in their nature. Thus, love is the answer to meaning, suffering, and God. I am not a religious person but, in my humble opinion, if God exists — it’s love, not the physical presence that occupies the body, but rather a multitude of feelings and nothing more. Hence, I came to a conclusion that love and its foundational pillars such as honesty, rapport, appreciation embody plasticine from which the new generations may construct a new world, where politicians will no longer play the chess games of power, where antipodes of foundational pillars such as greed will be dissolving like tears in the rain, where the process of globalisation will be utilised for the omnipresent benefit rather than a means to augment the wealth in an exchange of someone’s hopes.

I agree that this view is highly idealistic. Nevertheless, I choose to be hopeful and, hence, motivated to alter the bitter-sweet reality, no matter how unsuccessfully, rather than adore compliance and become an opaque screw embedded into the abysmal human mechanism of banality.