Intimate relationships: how you can thrive in love and freedom
Updated: Apr 3
In last week’s post, we discussed that you are not a body but free because the real you is made of light. You have a body, but it is not what defines you. You are defined by love. You merely use your body, but you are not it, and you do not need it.
Now, this is where it gets interesting when it comes to relationships. If you believe that you are a body and that your loved ones are also just bodies, fear will govern your relations. You might be afraid that these other bodies will leave you, that they might betray you, or that you could lose them in sickness and death.
None of this is true.
You cannot lose anyone, because all relationships are forever
In truth, there is no separation, no passing away, no time or distance to keep you from your beloved.
In his classic text Man’s Search For Meaning, Victor Frankl describes an experience he’s had with his late wife during his time in the death camps of Auschwitz. One cold and dark winter morning, he walks with his squat to their outside area of forced labor. Painfully placing one blistered foot in front of another, the psychologist recalls an image of his wife in his mind. At the time, Frankl doesn’t know if she is dead or alive, only that he longs for her. He senses her presence, and so he begins to talk to her. They have a conversation and it feels as if she is there with him. And she is. Their joining happens in the mind, and even in her physical absence, she feels closer than ever.
You might argue that he made it all up, that all this suffering and hardship has made him delirious, or that it's wishful thinking.
Doubt can and will always creep back into your mind--if you let it. Stand close watch on the doors of your perception, because your thoughts become things.
Your mind is much more powerful than you allow yourself to believe. Lean on your faith. Ask your spirit guides to help you overcome old fears and doubts.
You may think that you’re joining in physical lovemaking, but that is only scratching the surface. Real uniting takes place in Spirit. The body will always be a perceived barrier to love because it is the symbol of separation.
You are not entirely free as long as you are in a body--although you have chosen to come into this physical existence to explore what disconnect feels like.
So what does all of that have to do with unconditional love and freedom in intimacy?
Love and freedom are essentially the same
They make up the essence of what you are.
If you place any demands or expectations on love, you are not expressing love but demonstrating fear. Your ego has succeeded in making you believe that you are vulnerable, prone to attack, and dependent on any other source of love other than God.
When you make the mistake of projecting your search for love onto another separated one, you are placing a considerable burden onto them. Psychologists call this codependency. You think that you need someone else’s love, and for them to behave in a way that will bring you relief and contentment. This behavior leads to a lot of unnecessary drama and suffering in your relationships.
No matter what the ego is trying to convince you of, the physical body is never the means to an end. When was the last time you wanted something--an expensive car, an extended vacation, gorgeous clothes--only to realize that it didn’t make you happy once you got it? Soon you find something new again, thinking that this time, it will bring you fulfillment.
This goes not just for things but also for people
Imagine you meet your soulmate. It feels like a homecoming. You have finally found what you’ve been looking for. At first, your partner is making you very happy. You see their innocence and perfection. Things are going well. But as the years go by, life gets a little boring: you don’t have as much sex anymore as you used to, they never take the trash out, and above all, they watch way too much TV instead of engaging with you. Your happy dream has turned into a nightmare.
In the process of “falling in love,” you have come to associate feeling great with the other person.
Like a Pavlovian Dog, you’ve conditioned yourself to feel good whenever they are around. When they disappear for a while, you’re sad because you miss them. What you’re missing, however, is not them but the good feelings they evoke in you.
Becoming aware of this pattern is your opportunity to go beyond the childish need for love and approval from your partner and mature into a fully realized embodiment of unconditional love, wisdom, and peace.
When your partner is not acting in the way you want them to,-- and there are millions of ways, big and small, because, to the ego, things are never quite right--rejoice! They are presenting you with an opportunity to see beyond illusions--they can become your savior.
In each season of discontent, you have a choice. There is only one road we are all traveling on, and it leads you in either one direction: fear or love. The choice is yours. With every little thought, decision, or change of mind, you’re either moving closer to heaven or hell. You can choose to see them as a brother or an enemy, depending on your perception.
You cannot choose both, however, or it would result in a very conflicted mind. Which is, in fact, something you can witness in many dysfunctional relationships all over the world. These beings are continually flipping back and forth between harmony and attack, passion and hate, communion and distance. This can look quite schizophrenic from the outside, but to the ego, this behavior is completely normal and widely accepted. The ego’s approval does not, however, make it right or even real.
Imagine a toddler. They’re highly reactive to their immediate surroundings. Seeing an exciting toy, they want it. If someone wants to take it away from them, they burst into tears and throw a temper tantrum.
Toddler consciousness is the level of maturity most people’s relationships are at today
You see someone you like, and you want to make them yours. If someone else wants to take them away from you, or they shift their attention onto something else (such as work, friends, hobbies or, God forbid, another person!), you get jealous and explode into a temper tantrum. Or maybe you’re the quiet type who sulks instead, keeping it all inside while silently nursing your resentment, which later comes out as subtle reproach and complaints.
This behavior is not loving, it is the ego acting out.
The good news is that we’re entering a time where immature and codependent relationships are ready to be healed and transformed into holy relationships that serve the higher purpose of spiritual awakening.
The way you set your partner free is by placing no demands, limitations, or expectations onto them. You do not need anything from them, and if you believe you do, you are following the wrong teacher.
Make your relationship with Source the most important relationship in your life, because there is nothing else that can give you the experience of true love, peace, and freedom.
In fact, you are the Source of love, freedom, peace, and joy. When you accidentally project your search for these Source qualities onto another, you’ve lost touch with reality. You cannot get from them what you do not carry within yourself.
Freedom is a state of mind which then extends into your physical reality. Your outer world is a direct mirror reflection of your inner world. You begin to experience true freedom whenever you forgive yourself for your straight-jacket beliefs and fearful thoughts. It’s the same with love.
Love cannot attack, or it would not be love
The idea of “unconditional love” has become quite a buzzword among spiritual communities and seekers. But the truth is that love is unconditional by nature. Love is, and if you place any conditions, demands, or expectations upon it, it is no longer love but the denial of love.
You’re then listening to the ego, which likes the idea of love (especially romantic love) and wants to use it for its own purposes. The ego manipulates, distorts, contracts, and forms intelligent arguments sometimes derived from spiritual concepts to get its way. Be vigilant of the ego’s guidance.
Hardly anyone is (yet) on the level of evolution where the voice for love speaks louder than that of the ego.
This has nothing to do with Spirit and everything with the choices you are making every single day. How can you hear the whisper of God when you’re continually drowning it out with the news of the world? An endless stream of Facebook notifications, Email, and cute cat memes compete for your attention and keep you glued to your screen.
Spirit will never attempt to drown out the noisy chatter of the ego. It won’t compete for your attention, because it demands nothing from you. It merely waits, patiently, silently, until you are ready to pay attention. God has equipped you with a free will, which is part of your God-given freedom, and Spirit will never interfere with that. But the more space and awareness you bring to it, the louder the inner teacher of love will speak.
There is no need to panic over time, be afraid, or condemn yourself for not having come further on your journey yet. These are all attack thoughts of the ego. When you witness them in yourself, merely notice them and forgive yourself. Never blame or put guilt upon yourself for not doing things “correctly”--especially when it comes to your spiritual practice.
See your relationships as a unique opportunity to rise into love.
Forgive yourself for your jealousy, your attack, your blame, and your condemnation. It’s gone, and it cannot hurt you anymore unless you let it.
Your intimate relationship is a goldmine for spiritual growth, and when you surrender it to God, you can finally let it teach you what love is all about.
Celebrate every tiny win
Whenever you choose the power of love and forgiveness instead of fear and attack, you’re walking the path toward the holy relationship.
Bless yourself for all the loving choices you’re making every day.
Take time to pray and listen for the guidance from within. Call upon it when in doubt. It’s always available to you. And finally, ask Spirit to join you in your intimate relationship. It will always be there to lead you back home, where eternal love and freedom abide.