I have found relationship to be a deeply spiritual process. It will reveal to you all of those unpleasant aspects of yourself that you would never face without one. It can be used to purify those aspects, to grow beyond them. It is a spiritual journey. This is where we get to learn about trust, respect, commitment, communication, and love. And, it can be extremely challenging at times.
In order to create an “enlightened relationship” you of course must be committed to your own process of waking up. Choosing to be in a conscious relationship is a powerful pathway to achieving that.
We are always in relationship with something or someone whether it is your beloved, your friends, your boss and co-workers, your pets or nature herself. Our relatedness is a given just for being born as a human. What we choose to do with this gift is the question. There are many ways we can approach being in a conscious relationship. There are many paths that can teach you valuable principles that can help you on your journey. I have found a few that I feel are the most empowered and cutting edge in that they focus on how you can practice being an enlightened partner and thus create an enlightened relationship
One of these was a powerful, cutting edge relationship workshop taught by Michael and Christina Naumer throughout the 90s. It was called the Mind of Love. I learned about the principles of this unique and very radical approach to being in a relationship a few years ago when I was able to view some 30 hrs. of videotapes of their workshop. Unfortunately, this body of work is no longer available in that form, so I’ve decided to offer a few of its principles here. Of course you would’ve gotten more in the workshop than I can offer you here, but I hope you will be able to glean some valuable information that may assist you in your relationships.
Here is a synopsis of a few of the core principles of The Mind of Love.
- Taking Responsibility – It is essential that you take 100% responsibility for what you create in relationship. Even though you and your partner are in a ‘relationship ‘together, you are not each 50% responsible for it’s creation. You are each 100% responsible. If each person is 100% responsible then neither will need anything from the other to create it. Take full responsibility for how you are being in the relationship.
- Create a Context – Create a container or a context for your relationship. How do you view your relationship with each person? What defines each relationship and gives it the ability to grow, to change and to always move in the direction that you truly want it to? Most of us enter into relationships without ever creating a context for them. Then when something challenges us, the structure wobbles and often falls apart rather than shifting and growing to include whatever it was that challenged it. An example of a context that allows a relationship to grow and expand is, “Our relationship works, it makes a difference and everything contributes to it.” Then use your context, call it in and declare it to yourself over and over again no matter what shows up. This then is the larger purpose for your being in the relationship. Your commitment to your growth and the health of the relationship is greater than your commitment to having it your way, or being right or pushing against your partner in any way.
- Being Enough – When you come into a relationship feeling whole and enough on your own, without needing your partner to give you anything or complete youin any way , you are actually contirbuting to it rather than taking from it. Your partner is not there to just give to you but rather you are both giving and receiving from each other.
- Contextual Distinctions are core issues or beliefs. Notice what you believe to be true about the opposite sex for instance, and then notice how your thoughts are filtered through those beliefs and projected onto your partner. For instance, if you believe ‘men fall short’ or ‘women can never be satisfied’, you will see all the ways your partner falls short or cannot be satisfied. What you put your attention on grows stronger in your life. Have you ever noticed how many red cars there are on the road these days? If you ask this question, you will notice how many there are, though the number of actual red cars has not changed.
- Attachments – When you are attached to a particular form that your relationship has to be in then you limit yourself and create unnecessary suffering. There are infinite possibilities that exist to you in relationship. If you decide a relationship has to be romantic, for instance, you may deprive yourself of a loving friendship. Attachment starts when we begin to think that we can only love someone if we are in a romantic relationship with him or her. Understand that form constantly changes. You cannot control your relationship to be in a certain form forever. When you become attached to someone notice first where the feeling of ‘I need’ arises. Do you need to feel safe? Are you working through issues of abandonment? Ask yourself, what do you think you are missing or that you can’t give to yourself that you expect someone else to give to you? Learn how to love and let them go at the same time. This will free you up to love even more.
- Creating from Satisfaction – When there is no need in a relationship everything is a gift. Creating from satisfaction creates interdependence not dependence in a relationship. When you come from satisfaction this establishes a platform to be able to expand to include more in the relationship, and in all of life. When you generate your own satisfaction out of how you are being in the relationship rather than what your partner’s approval you will be more fulfilled.
- Creating an Identity – We create an identity to give ourselves value. This happens when we are in a relationship as well. You may think of yourself as a “couple” which defines you in some way. Sometimes you perceive your own lack of value, and look to your partner for validation and to give you a sense of yourself. The more you are in identification, the less there is an experience of the real you, that which is beyond “identity”
- Expectation – Unfulfilled expectation is responsible for about 80% of the upset in relationships. When you have an expectation, you shut down on your partner’s ability to deliver what you want, and it takes all of the joy out of the giving and the receiving of it.
- Expand to Include – Seeing what your partner does as a part of their process allows you to expand to include, and create a relationship that is ever expanding. To do this it helps to realize that what your partner does, does not mean anything about you, or them or about your relationship.
- Control – When you try to control your partner to act a certain way or do certain things you find out that the controller gets controlled by his/her control. All control really comes from a need to feel safe in some way. When you begin to feel unsafe, be willing to ask yourself, what seems to be threatening your safety or the relationship? What are you afraid of and then be willing to share this with your partner.
- Trust – There are 3 types of trust; Conventional trust is, “I’ll trust you as long as you do what I want.” Fools trust, which is trusting someone not to do something that they have done repeatedly. Sourced trust is true trust. It is not doing-based trust, but being-based trust or process-based trust. It is, “Ill trust you to act consistent with your commitments and I won’t make what you do about me, you or the relationship. I will stand for your process and not obstruct it in any way, and know that your higher self is going to work it through.”
- Possibilities – There are infinite possibilities that exist within your relationship. Empowerment in a relationship involves asking the question, “where can I stand in our relationship, and generate possibilities for myself, and for my partner, other than in ‘what I want’?” When you stand in the place of generation you can look at the relationship and see what it is calling for. It is being 100% responsibile for generating a great relationship for yourself.
I hope that this has given you a few ideas that will expand your relationship, allowing you to explore new ways you and your beloved can become enlightened partners. At this time in our history it is up to us to lead the way in creating new ways of relating as conscious being and living examples.