On the fundamental nature of love

Something I’ve been thinking about lately: I don’t believe that there is a “meaning of life” in the sense of a master plan or a grand design, but I do think that life has meaning in that we are ourselves creatures who are deeply engaged with meaning. It’s inherent in the way we construct the virtual reality we live in (for which we typically use words like society, economy, culture, etc.) — in order to be able to engage with conceptual constructs as if they were real and tangible, you have to have a capacity for meaning. And we have worked out a bunch of different cultural frameworks over the millennia for what we say gives meaning to life, which we also then typically muck up with a bunch of unnecessary rules and prescriptions and exhortations and taboos.

But I think you can actually simplify radically simplify it that the meaning of human life, the purpose of our existence, is to love. Not love as a noun, but as a verb: to love. To love each other, the world, our selves. It’s fundamental to what we are as social creatures, and it’s always our best and highest calling.

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