Sunday, June 21, 2020

The most unique and transmutative temple

In any close relationship (where we take the risk of allowing another to matter) we open ourselves to confrontation and integration of the two archetypal energies of abandonment and fusion. At some deep core level there may always be some hesitancy in moving into this territory, which is valid and need not be shamed or pathologized.

We come into relationship with a rich template of past relational experiences – will it be safe? To what degree can I count on the other to see me as I am, to provide holding for my eccentricities, sensitivities, and historic core vulnerabilities? Can I truly trust them? Will they turn from me? Will I lose myself? Is this all going to be worth it?

Inevitably, ruptures will occur within the relational field, in that tender intersection between ourselves and another. But we must remember that rupture is natural, organic, and quantum. From this perspective, a healthy relationship is not one in which there is never any conflict, but one in which rupture is repaired, by way of empathic linkage, shared resonance, and a simultaneous honoring of our own separateness and integrity. The cycle of rupture and repair allows the relationship to unfold, deepen, and disclose its secret essence.

Each of us arrives into the space between ourselves and the other with biographical, cultural, and archetypal patterning, scripts, and worlds of imagination. Our images and fantasies intermingle and interpenetrate to weave the relational field, along with the mysterious Other, the third who also appears. It is through this intersubjective dance of illuminating, articulating, and making sense of our experience with the other that the templates become ripe for revisioning.

This is why, in part, close personal relationships can be so achingly painful, on the one hand… while being the most unique and transmutative temple on the other.

Photo by Anrita Krause

My new book - A Healing Space: Befriending Ourselves in Difficult Times - is now available for pre-order at Amazon and will be published by Sounds True in November. Learn more about the book (including a full list of online retailers) and early editorial reviews and endorsements here

We've decided to leave our monthly online community, Befriending Yourself, open for enrollment during these uncertain and challenging times. For more information, please visit the course page here