By: Trish Ingleson

Love guru Yuriy Derkach hosts a seminar at the college on Feb. 7 discussing the definition of love.

Some say love is the greatest thing in our existence. True love, that forever kind of love. A hand to hold, a shoulder to cry on, a better half. But what is love, really?

On Feb. 7, Algonquin’s Interfaith Spirituality Centre hosted, What love is? And what it is not?, the first in a series of discussion groups open to all students on the topic of love.

Yuriy Derkach, one of six chaplains here at Algonquin and a strong believer in true love and soul mates, ran the discussion and shared his wisdom with students.

He began by having students brainstorm, first taking a look at what love is not. Among the things listed were war, selfishness, lust and doubt.

On the other hand, when brainstorming characteristics of what love is, the list grew a whole lot longer. It included peace, selflessness, trust, forgiveness, patience, sacrifice and friendship.

“Friendship is the very first step of love,” said Derkach. “Without friendship, there cannot be love. All relationships should be based on this. This is your solid foundation.”

He also believes that that true love is freedom and free choice, “A lot of times we look for love in other people. This is an illusion. This is a lie. True happiness, true love, joy, peace, lie within us. And our task, everyone, is to come to that.”

Derkach hopes to continue holding these talks throughout the semester and welcomes everyone, “No matter what age you are, no matter what stage you are, it’s the same issues that we’re dealing with and the time is now.”