marriage

Chocolate Body Paint & Darwin'sLoophole!

A woman and I were chatting the other day about love and her finding a significant other. She adamantly told me, “I don’t need my significant other to love me. If I want to feel loved, he can pay for me to have a massage or get me a dog to love me unconditionally…” Trying to understand where she was coming from, I curiously asked her, “How can you lie down with someone at night (or whenever) if you do not have a strong and affectionate bond with him?” She did not answer. Like many individuals I have encountered and discussed this topic with, seem to be “OK”, with the surface and sensory aspects of “love” and “image” as Relationship or even just as a way of r e l a t i n g.

Could this kind of existence be yet another aspect of Darwinism? Survival at any level is still survival? Can we consciously have sex with someone that we do not love or at least think that we love?…

(I have heard from many men that they do not have the issue of this question …)

I wonder if people who live this way of relating can be contented and present with the person that they are involved with, especially, sexually. The whole sexual act is altered when it lacks love. Personally, I would be very distracted to say the least, let alone be able to think about the “end result”. Maybe I would catch myself daydreaming and wonder if he would catch me daydreaming too! Maybe he wouldn’t care that I was lost in reverie about My Knight in Shining Armor and not present and intimate with him! If I was that woman, perhaps I would not be fantaticizing about anyone but rather, imagining some fantastic shopping event or my next, future purchase that I could make from the current sale

of my—s o u l…)

I have read that we choose mates and partners either like ourselves or individuals who propel us to grow, whether that is a positive growing experience or not, I think there is some truth to that. In this case, if the man chooses a woman who chose him to solely fill her sensory needs, there is a good chance that she is filling his sensory needs only and that neither one can experience intimacy. During an act that should be one of emotional bonding, in this case, this gentleman would likely be daydreaming too (!) about someone else (or perhaps—his In Box). He could also be fantaticizing about his next business deal that he would need to make in order to keep her in her shopping extravaganzas! After all, if there is no love, sex is just sex and fleeting at that. In a way it can be related to the high some people get when they shop. The purchase is exciting at first, but eventually the things we buy are no longer new and sooner or later the things that were once new are no longer so and  find their way to the bottom of our drawers or the back of our closet.

Do we not want more from our relationships that are supposed to be founded on intimacy?

* * * * *

When individuals exist in relationship on the physical plane only, they end up treating each other with this “shopping” value system, which is actually a lack in valuing the individual. When love is present it is always reciprocated. There is no unrequited love. Love is love. It does not ask for reciprocity…

* * * * *

I am the curious type. I wonder: How do people partner themselves up with images and bodies and incomes and then try to justify and reduce their hearts to being satisfied with the-things-of-this-world or that the affection of a dog can stand higher than intimate love from a human being?

What would Darwin say? Darwin should have had a theory to secure the well-being of the survival of our hearts. There should have been a loophole for people like myself. There should have been an escape button!

(oh yeah. There is: Faith and divorce!)

Sex is an interesting topic to discuss with people, but intimacy seems to be more fascinating and even too ambiguous for many to contemplate, let alone —to experience. If we could go beyond the surface of life, the image-and-things-of-our-days…perhaps we would discover that intimacy had little to do with sex but that sex, with intimacy is held in a higher regard than any sale, shopping event, massage or affectionate pooch!

But intimacy/love involves so much more risk and from what I see around me, people tend to be comfortable with partnering with the bodies of others, rather than with the sharing of their souls…and when two people give their soul to each other, they discover how intimacy is not as passing as a shopping spree or an hour long massage. The sharing of our souls lasts a lifetime. It is no shocking wonder why our country is filled with unhappy and tumultuous, possessive based relationships that are thought to be “love”. Intimacy involves risk and for many, bearing their soul makes them too vulnerable and that is far more frightening than the “immediate auctioning off” of their flesh.

* * * * *

For those who are willing to join the flesh with the soul? Ahh now, there is a product out there called, Chocolate Body Paint and it is quite the yummy soulful experience when shared with the right two bodies and the right two minds…

It will take you to adventures and chocolate covered Lands you never knew existed. The perfect amount of calories enjoyed and spent. And when you return from That Place and That Destination of The Intimate and The Soulful -----the sensory world will never look the same again and will most assuredly pale in comparison to your new discovery of Intellectual Consummation. It is the best kept secret that only Underground Lovers and Rumi know exist.

Bon appétit!

Xxoo

So, when that Clock is about to strike 12 and that noon train is approaching around the bend; the tracks are laden with golden bricks pointing in a Direction and your life is asking you:  Decide, Decide, Decide...who are you going to listen to?  Your heart or your mind?

(only time will tell...)

Betrayal vs. Disillusionment

At a recent gathering with some friends, a discussion began about relationships, marriage and divorce.   The party consisted of about fifteen or so couples and I was the only hinge-less one there.  The topic of conversation should come as no surprise to anyone… especially since I started it! One truly, openly engaging woman and I talked about love and the contract of marriage.  We discussed how life’s daily trials were sometimes a chore—yet, love should not be.  (For me, the experience of love is effortless.)  When the conversation began to feel more like a debate, I sensed that she did not see love’s simplicity as something remotely realistic and she left me with the impression that love and marriage are work. Is it possible that we perceive love and marriage as work simply because that is what we raised to believe?

She suggested that I had experienced much betrayal in my marriage and while I felt that was true, I began to wonder if it was betrayal that I felt or simply a case of disillusionment or maybe—both.   When we realize that the idea of what we have and believe in is not actually real, that is the betrayal I think that leads to many departures.

The question we must all ask ourselves is:

Is the experience of disillusionment an honest form of betrayal or is what we are feeling/experiencing just the realization of a lie?

Perhaps this is the contradiction.  The revelation of any lie either leads one into more self-deception or it is the guiding path to a healthier life change, even if, in the beginning, that change appears in the form of a crisis.

Once realization occurs the question remains:  Who is the Traitor—our partner or ourselves?

(When it comes to betrayal/disillusionment, perhaps the real Traitor is Self-Deception.)

The woman walked over to pet my daughter’s puppy, Mokie, a beautiful ruby colored, Cavalier, King Charles Spaniel, when she did so, I remarked, “He is effortless.” I gave him a kiss as I passed him over to her.  She affectionately took him from my arms, pet him admiringly and then as she passed him back to me, she pat me on my shoulder, in that-affectionate-and-professorial-kind-of-way, and said, “Effort is good, I am a teacher…” but as she walked away, I grew curious and wondered:  what does teaching anything have to do with the simplicity of love?  Love is the one thing that we do not need to learn and we certainly do not have to be taught how to feel it!  I go to the gym and use effort on the elliptical machine to have more energy and to feel better.  Love is not an effort in mental gymnastics or an exercise of the heart.  No one teaches the heart how to beat…or more importantly—how to feel.

*     *     *     *     *

Question:  Is Love The Only Reality and Can It Sustain Us…Forever?

“There is no reality except the one contained within us.  That is why so many people live such an unreal life.  They take the images outside them for  reality and never allow the world within to assert itself.” --Hermann Hesse

Sometimes my life feels like I am walking on a tight rope and I am a trapeze artist trying to keep balanced in a world that is round and spinning—(I remind myself that it is a round and spinning world for everyone else too!) I am holding onto the only Reality I know, live and breathe and hoping that the Reality I am clinging to is the right one (!) and that I don’t fall off of my perception of it!

(yeah, I know—you are hanging on to the perception of your Reality as well…but will you admit it?)

Life is surely a balancing act.  Love is not.  It is the only reality that clarifies, dignifies and makes even the daftest of us completely aware of life.   Love is self-contained inside of every one of us, therefore all of the struggles we have are external creations that we have some how had a hand in manifesting.  (The Good, The Bad and The Ugly.) Unconscious choices can have lasting effects and the cause and effects of those choices create our outside world and some times that world can be an ugly place to inhabit.  This is exactly why the internal world of each individual needs to be all sustaining. It is what gives us the necessary strength and sobriety to cope with our external world and to not rely on it solely for our happiness.  We all struggle with exactly what the balance for our life is and obviously it is not the same for everyone.  We might find comfort in worldly possessions and the accoutrements our life has provided us with, but the real source of joy and happiness will always come from within—the Place and Source of all love.

*     *     *     *     *

I don’t have credit cards, shopping sprees, or many “things of the world” per se, but I do take comfort in knowing that those things do not de-fine me.  My life circumstances could be better, will be better some day, but regardless, without all of That Stuff that makes up the Outside World, I have some-thing inside of me that no word or words can do justice for.   We all possess the capability of finding this inward reality that is so Divinely De-fining and once we find it, or better, rediscover it, it will carry us in spite of life’s trials and events.  Once this inward Reality is found, we discover true Alchemy, Reverie, Destiny and Eternity in one tightly woven package called—Alive.

The reality of love and its ability to sustain us is tricky because it is not an attached love or the romantic kind that so many of us cling to.   It is not fiction; rather everything other than this Honest Love is the illusion we must remember is not real. (Challenging but true.) Every day we can learn what love is not, but we do not have to take a course on what love is.   The tragedy must be for those who exist without truly experiencing love in their life and what it feels like to be living a loveless existence and then one day to die—never having become aware of all they were never aware of—namely, love.

*     *      *     *     *

Think about it:  If you have love in your relationships, you yield to the demands of life’s every day occurrences.  The Horrible seems less so.  The Pleasant seems more so.  When we have not discovered that well of love inside of ourselves and it is absent in our home and with our significant other, every detail and upheaval is exaggerated and throws the entire infrastructure of the family and each relationship off balance.  Babies go flying out of windows (with or without the bath water), houses burn down, the tie around our neck feels like it is suffocating you, us and everyone in our immediate environment.  Without love, our days are filled with incurable anxiety and we watch the nightly news with the anticipation that the next life that will be claimed will undoubtedly be our own; the plane crash will bear our name or someone we care deeply for.  When love dictates the course of our days? The step in our walk feels a little lighter, we are more drawn to news that inspires and enlightens, rather than news that keeps us fearful and riddled with doubt.

And while we might need to take a course on how to navigate our way through our daily trials, we will never have to learn how effortless love is or that it is what truly makes the world go round.  The surprise with the rediscovery of love is its natural ability to remind us that it is some-thing we have had all along.

Managing the mundane trials of every day life challenges our outside world.  When we understand that the day’s stresses and distractions have nothing to do with love, yet everything to do with the lack of it, we can have a clearer glance into what is not working with our life. With awareness, the first step to change, we see that we can make conscious choices and hopefully this awareness will enable us to redirect our path to a happier and more fulfilling existence.

*     *     *     *     *

If we wish to return to the love in our soul, the Persian poet, Attar, says, “you will sacrifice everything.  You will lose what you have considered valuable, but eventually you’ll hear the voice you’ve most wanted to hear saying, Yes. Come in.”

And when we hear that Voice—that Invitation, we realize that the place we are entering is—Home to Every-One.  And that Home, my dear friends, is exactly what makes the world go round and round and round… hang on to that Reality and its perception and enjoy the ride...

So, when that Clock is about to strike 12 and that noon train is approaching around the bend; the tracks are laden with golden bricks pointing in a Direction and your life is asking you:  Decide, Decide, Decide...who are you going to listen to, your heart or your mind?  What will you do?  Tell the Truth or Lie?

(only time will tell...)

Commitment vs. Complacency

(and the hidden betrayals of the heart...)

“Love is of all passions the strongest, for it attacks simultaneously the head,

the heart and the senses.”

Lao Tzu

The Mind and Commitment

What is commitment?

When explored deeply, we understand all that commitment is not.  Commitments lose their meaning for us when we see how the mind tries to convince the heart that its version of guarantee will last; yet in the end, the heart always wins.  The heart commits without fanfare, Paper Work or conditions.  Commitments become Riddles when a disorderly mind tirelessly attempts to organize impossible rules to live by.  When unrealistic expectations are not met, impediments are inevitable and will eventually cause the breakdown of how we understand a promise.  The collapses of our vows often come with a change of heart, not of mind, yet this is not betrayal.  On the contrary, when we live within the criteria of the Ethics of the Heart, there is no disloyalty unless we have inadvertently silenced the wisdom of our soul’s callings.  When the mind commits solely to the linear conditions of life in our career and/or personal life, rigid rules become a prison, which leads to regrets.  When we stay on the periphery of relationships (our mind) the internal space (our heart) is left unattended.  Without the tending and nurturing to our heart, there can be no real love and no viable commitment.

The Heart and Commitment When love is present all the rules change, because love changes all the rules… When love is present, commitment is unencumbered and free.  The heart is betrayed when the mind conquers it, leading it to believe that its allegiance is best when we refrain from questioning the social conditioning's of our lives.   This is why Honest Love is so threatening to the average mind-centered individual.  They know that there is never competition with anything that is pure and unalloyed, yet the very nature of its innocence is threatening to minds that believe love needs to be contained and exclusive.  This notion of exclusivity actually prevents the natural beauty and innocence of love to flow.

Commitment is naturally all sustaining when each party knows and loves the essence of the other; when two people do not deceive themselves with pseudo love and they are not using the other for personal gain or hidden agendas. This kind of pledge is spontaneous and unintentional, yet when love is not present, commitment is not available; however, our mind will try to convince us otherwise. Even if the physical body remains in the relationship, without love, we all secretly know when our heart departs…

We might ask ourselves: What is love, actually?   Love is not as many things as we have created it to be.  As a sensory needy society, Love is often marketed as something that it is not.  It is not a thing to possess, but it is a thing to give away… Commitments shift when we realize that what we were being loyal to was in fact not love and perhaps the farthest thing from it.  If we stay in a loveless relationship the commitment becomes a dysfunctional state of mind, complacency sets in like a slow death and our heart is continually betrayed.

Is The Limbic System Responsible for The Chemistry of Love and Commitment?

Where does the soul come into this equation?  Committed love transcends sex and individual boundaries.  There is an undeniable interconnectedness—a limbic resonance where, when we go beyond dopamine, phenylethylamine and oxytocin we reach our highly evolved spirit- state and we commit to what is most natural—which is to love.

Love is real when you can love another the same way as a beautiful wild flower.  To tear it from the earth—it would die. But to gaze upon its Petals, along with the sun, along with the kiss of the wind and with the rain, pure white rain—you watch it Grow—this is love.

How does commitment change courses? The heart will move, always in the direction of life, honoring its need to flow, change and grow.   The clearer we become to ourselves, discerning when commitment needs to be reevaluated is something that can only be determined by an individual’s ability to think independently, free from the influences of others.  Sometimes we feel that we must stay in a job and relationship because of a promise.  However, how can we grow if we stay in a Place that is stagnant and unfulfilling and perhaps detrimental to our overall well being? This is where we address our personal understanding of value and what and whom we value.  This is where we must ask ourselves:  Are we honoring commitment or are we being complacent? Are we committed or are we attached? (Do we know the difference?)

Commitment in Marriages and Committed Relationships

Marriages are an institution and contract.  The origin of them was to build strength and alliances.  Marriages were often arranged up until three generations ago.  Love and romance in marriages is a fairly new concept, perhaps this is why there is conflict.  On one hand the history of marriage was designed to win wars (yet often with marriages, internal wars are created) and love had nothing to do with its success or failure, yet producing offspring did.

How do we choose our right and permanent partner? (Is there just one?) We need to know ourselves very well.  We must have an impeccable relationship with ourselves first and foremost otherwise we cannot fully know or appreciate someone else.

In the end we have to be our own authority and take back what belonged to us in the beginning:  our commitment to the Ethics of our Hearts. What ideology can ever answer for us, what is right or true for us?  Who do we intrinsically trust with our life decisions if not ourselves?  If we are to trust outside authorities is that a life of integrity? Authenticity?  Or is it a life that is only half alive?

(These are not questions any “expert” can answer for us, for whose authority, if not our own reigns with more raw honesty than our own?)

"The heart is forever making the head its fool."

Francois de la Roche Foucauld

Love in a committed relationship happens by understanding and trusting who we are.   With Honest Love two souls recognize the fragility and value of life and hold that understanding and that love above all else in the world.  This kind of sacred love and commitment knows no hierarchy; there is no exclusivity or possessiveness; no mine, no jealousy, no right sexuality or wrong sexuality—just that which is valued.  With the heart, all riddles are answered effortlessly.  When love is not present the heart departs even if the body stays behind, leaving it scrambling aimlessly for its forsaken soul.  When we stay, each individual knows that they are not committed; rather, they are ghosts haunting the body—holding it captive and hosting a relationship that does not really exist.

We must ask ourselves: What could any scientific theory or relationship expert tell our hearts that we don’t already secretly know?  Before there was verbal language, there was first the language and vision of the heart.  It will always be the Master Language; the highest Voice with a universal vocabulary and an undeniable Authority that will always honor a higher truth than any written or spoken word.

So, when that Clock is about to strike 12 and that noon train is approaching around the bend; the tracks are laden with golden bricks pointing in a Direction and your life is asking you:  Decide, Decide, Decide...who are you going to listen to?  Your heart or your mind?

(only time will tell...)