If sharing is to take place, you must build a basis that includes equality, sensitivity, and communication.
In spirit everyone is equal. This isn’t just an abstract concept; it is the one perception that can overcome ego. If I feel superior to you, my superiority is rooted in self-image.
Equality isn’t based upon external factors or images. We all have an equal right to be appreciated, respected and understood. Some men find it hard to extend this concept to woman’s emotions. They were not taught to value their own feelings, which get expressed only as a last resort.
But to accept another person means accepting her emotions—there is nothing more basic or intrinsic. If this equality doesn’t exist, how can spirit really grow?
Spirit isn’t an emotion, but it provides an opening to our inner selves. You have to feel that your partner wants to understand you and your feelings before you can share experiences you barely understand yourself.
Being able to sense what is going on inside another person is a skill that has to be developed like any other. Sensitivity requires setting aside your notions of what the other person is feeling, what you think she should feel, and what you hope she isn’t feeling. Wherever the ego intrudes, sensitivity cannot be present.
To be sensitive you will have to abandon being right all the time, being in control, having needs that must dominate over the needs of others, and so forth.
Communion is the root word in communication, reminding us that to communicate with another person isn’t to pass on information. It is to draw another into union with yourself.
Adapted from The Path to Love, by Deepak Chopra (Three Rivers Press, 1997).