It is no secret that, for many, intimate relationship is one of the great amplifiers of the unlived life. We can count on our partners and close friends to relentlessly illuminate everything that remains unresolved within us. Not because they have some agenda to do so, but simply by the nature of the vessel that forms when we allow another to truly matter.
We come to relationship with an already-existing patterning that formed long ago, crafted of both personal and collective experience. While this template can be updated and itself longs for reorganization into more integrated forms, until reconfiguration it has a way of looming over us and coloring perception. It functions by way of a time machine where, when activated, it is as if we have left the “here and now” and found ourselves back in the “there and then.”
There is nothing like a close relationship to illuminate the orphaned emotions, beliefs, and vulnerable parts of ourselves that have lost their way in the tangle of somatic and psychic pathways. It can be a revelation to see how we attract and are attracted to those aspects and qualities in the other that we have disowned in ourselves.
It can feel a bit achy and agonizing to realize that the beloved, in whatever form he or she may take, seems to have extraordinary powers to open the raw, tender, and naked dimensions of our being. But it is a sacred ache, oriented to the mystery.
May we be kind to our partners in response to the inevitable disturbance that will arise as we make this journey together. Learning how to transmute the energy of conflict by way of skillful means and an open heart is essential and a secret doorway into the evolutionary potential that relationship offers.
My next book, A Healing Space: Befriending Yourself in Difficult Times, will be published by Sounds True in 2020.