Question: What is true love and is it really possible?
Answer: By design, we are so unique and complex that we cannot truly love a spouse, our parents and children, people around us, humanity, or the Creator unless it is all tied into a single whole!
We are developing in such fashion that our nature won’t let us love only one particular individual. A person thinks that he loves his children, wife, and maybe some other people, but in the end, he isn’t succeeding with any of them. He sees that something constantly breaks, crushes, and he runs into walls, with all of his desire to love. But why is it so?
The wisdom of Kabbalah reveals this secret to us by saying that love can be only absolutely perfect and general. If you don’t love all, you won’t be allowed to feel love for any individual. This means that you must love everything there is: the Creator, humanity, the world, those who are close and dear, and those who are distant, all as one whole. This is the only way to achieve love. Otherwise, it is impossible. I am sorry I have to tell you this, but it’s true.
Besides, we think that love is something very exalted, something heavenly. In truth, love is a beast; it is something very simple: the act of unification of “flesh with flesh.” But if we wish to raise this beast that lives among us and is called “love,” then we have to feed it with something called “mutual concessions.”
I yield to you, thereby feeding our love, and it gets “thicker.” Then you yield to me, and our love grows. Since we are all egoists, concessions are the only action that can help us cultivate love.
We have to learn to concede! There are only two principles to love: the first one is to build love on concessions, and the second is that love can be only all-inclusive, and then each individual love will also come true.
From Talk with Arkadi Duchin 12/22/10