Sammy Nickalls
Updated July 17, 2015

“What is love?” It sounds like such a simple question, doesn’t it? We can look it up in the dictionary and spout off the definition, but that doesn’t truly explain the all-encompassing complexity that is love. That’s why the YouTube channel, SoulPancake, decided to bring in dozens of people of every age and ask them what they truly thought love was. . . and the answers were totally beautiful.

Those three little words may be so short, but they totally stumped many of the interviewees at first. Many of them paused and scratched their head, or they laughed nervously as they pondered the enormity of that question. A two-year-old burst into adorable giggles when she was asked, while a five-year-old decided to answer in very simple terms: “That means you love someone.” Hey, maybe it really is that simple.

For one 51-year-old man, love is a lot more deep than that, though. “Everything else becomes nothing,” he explained. “All that matters is that the whole two hearts expand through that infinity.” Wow: if that’s not poetic romance, we don’t know what is.

In fact, people in their 50s had a lot of great points. Though love is powerful, it has to go both ways. “It has to be a two-way street,” a 50-year-old woman said. For another 58-year-old woman, love comes from within. “Once you learn how to love yourself, you can love anything in this world,” she explained.

For a 29-year-old man, it’s about being truly open and being yourself. “Love for me is being 100% vulnerable and all the way in,” he told SoulPancake.

For a 17-year-old girl, it’s about sacrifice — about doing anything for that special someone. “I think that it’s being able to do something for somebody else that maybe you wouldn’t normally do or maybe you wouldn’t want to do,” she explained, “but you do it anyway because it’s something that they want to do.”

One 80-year-old really hit us in the feels with his story. “I’m married 55 years,” he said to the camera. “Our job, in life, the two of us, is to look after each other and see to it that we’re our best selves, so to speak. So I try to help her be her best self, and she tries to help me, and to me that’s love. I hope to do that as long as I can stay awake.”

And finally, there was a 105-year-old man who quietly whispered, “Love means a lot to me. It means a lot. I love my family, my friendships, all that. It means a lot.”

It’s clear that love means many different things to many different people, but maybe this answer is the one that matters: that love will prevail throughout all of our years, and it will never, ever truly lose its meaning — whatever that meaning may be to us.

We totally love this project and everything it stands for. Such a small word can pack such a big meaning that can be different to everybody, but one thing’s for sure: it’s one of the most important things in this world. Check out the entire video below and let us know what you think love means.

(Images via Soul Pancake)Related: 13 smart pieces of advice about love