Relationship can be a spiritual practice, just as valid–and certainly as difficult–as solving a Zen koan or mastering a challenging yoga position. But a fully evolved and conscious relationship can lead to deep fulfillment and bliss. Here are some helpful steps for transforming our relationships into conscious ones.
If you both agree that the relationship will be your spiritual practice, so much the better.
1. Express your thoughts and feelings to each other as soon as they occur, or as soon as a reaction comes up, so that you do not create a time gap in which an unexpressed or unacknowledged emotion or grievance can fester or grow.
2. Learn to give expression to what you feel without blaming.
3. Learn to listen to your partner in an open, non-defensive way. Give your partner space for expressing himself or herself. Be present. Accusing, defending, attacking–all those patterns that are designed to strengthen or protect the ego or to get its needs met will then become redundant.
4. Giving space to others–and to yourself–is vital. Love cannot flourish without it.
When you have removed the two factors that are destructive to relationships–when the pain-body has been transmuted and you are no longer identified with mind and mental positions–and if your partner has done the same, you will experience the bliss of the flowering of relationship. Instead of mirroring to each other your pain and your unconsciousness, instead of satisfying your mutual addictive ego needs, you will reflect back to each other the love that you feel deep within, the love that comes with the realization of your oneness with all that is. This is the love that has no opposite.
Adapted from The Power of Now, by Eckhart Tolle (New World Library, 1999). Copyright (c) 1999 by Eckhart Tolle. Reprinted by permission of New World Library.
Adapted from The Power of Now, by Eckhart Tolle (New World Library, 1999).