We enter relationships for innumerable reasons. Most often, it's with the intention of getting certain needs met. Some of these are being understood, being accepted, receiving compassion, and companionship. To best get these needs met, with each person you are in relationship, I suggest you first ask yourself:
1) what do you want from that person?
2) what do you feel with this person?
3) what do you want to feel more of with them?
Once you have discerned what you want in relationship to them, turn that desire into an offering to them: a gift, if you will. Extend to them the very actions that may give them the experience you are wanting. Because in the end, whatever need(s) you are attempting to get met, you'll do so by "giving unto others what you want to receive from them".
Whenever you meet someone (anyone), I encourage you to ask yourself one simple and easy to remember question; "Have I built a bridge to this person?" In other words, "Have I walked in their "shoes?". "Do I have compassion and empathy for them?". "Have I applied the Golden Rule?" As we apply this approach to relationship (all relationships), we create a "bridge". This bridge can be built from you to all people. The more bridges we create, the more we get our needs met, the fewer expectations we place on others, the less conflict we experience. Eventually, creating bridges becomes our natural approach to all relationships.
I encourage you to take this ideal to all of life. Animals and plants, vehicles, buildings, everything. As we create "bridges" to everyone and everything in our life, we see the Sacred manifest, as a continual stream of Beauty. We see the Hand of God weaving Itself through each moment.
The term "Namaste" expresses this. meaning "The Light within me sees and honors the Light within you".
Traditionally, we have held that intimacy is an experience between 2 people. The sweetness of connection. The giving and receiving of touch, of loving words and sentiments. Seeing deeply into The being of another. Indeed, this is exquisite! Yet, we spend much of our lives in search of that person (or people) we believe can "give" us that experience. The great irony (and the great redemption) is that the sweetness we identify as the experience one "gets" in a loving relationship is completely available within us, in every moment!
I like to think of true intimacy as "In-to-me-you-see". To the extent that we allow ourselves to be "seen" is the extent to which we feel intimacy. It's an inside job. As we become comfortable with ourselves (our past, our addictions, our secrets), we have less to hide. With less hiding, we have less desire to find someone else to show us love. We are now loving ourselves.
To the extent that you no longer hide (your inner world is no longer hidden from your outer world), do you experience intimacy, moment to moment. Call it Freedom. The freedom to Be exactly who you are, at every level of your Being. A great spiritual teacher of mine Swami Muktananda, said "When every thought, word, and action are aligned, one experiences True Freedom." That's Intimacy!
Recently, my son Elijah (precocious as he is) said "Isn't the word 'intimacy' "In to me I see"? Haazzaa!!!! Out of the mouth of babes! (OK, so he's 15 years old and almost as tall as me. But you know, he'll always be me baby)
Muktananda was once asked "What would you do if I shot you right now"? His reply: "I'd die loving you".
How can we open to unconditional Love?
I invite you into an exercise that will give you an immediate opportunity. Give yourself 10 minutes.
Imagine the person with whom you are presently experiencing the greatest conflict. See them standing in front of you. What do you feel? Don't push these feelings away, don't dwell on them. Allow them. Do this now.
I now invite you to recognize how this person is presently the greatest "Angel" in your life. Just by being in relation to them, you are aware of the area in your being where you are experiencing the most suffering. This is likely the area in your life where you are presently offering the least love. And if love is what you want, you can now bring love to the darkest place in your life. Right now. Are you ready? If so, continue...
Imagine centered in your heart, a brilliant colored light. Let this be the 'Light of your inner Love'. Breath in this Light and let it fill you. Send a steady stream of this Light to the heart of this person. See them receive it. See them fill with joy, gratitude, and peace. See this Light fill their chest, traveling out their arms, down their legs, and up into their heads. See them rejuvenated by this Cosmic Light, as though they are receiving the most enlivening Nutrition. See Joy fill their being. See them feel Inspired, Creative, and Loving. Do this now.
Now see in their heart, a brilliant, colored Light of Love. See a steady stream of Light and Love extend from their heart to yours. Allow yourself to receive it fully. Let it fill you as they have just been filled. Do this now.
Envision a flow of Light and Love from your heart to theirs and from their heart to yours. Feel the gratitude for having loved. For having chosen the single most important aspect of life. Do this now.
|This Valentine's Day (and every day), my wish for you is that you choose Love. May this 25 minute video inspire you.
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