September 8, 2010 on 11:43 am
Dear Spiritual Explorer: My husband and I love each very much, but always are disagreeing. It’s usually over some trivial matter. We both meditate together, but still cannot achieve a harmonious couple’s relationship. Can you help us? Melanie T., Saginaw, MI.
Couple’s Tao Te Ching
When couples have problems in their relationships, usually they think about seeing a marriage counselor. Oftentimes, this is very helpful. But for those couples who are involved in a spiritual relationship, there appears to be the desire for a more lasting, and deeper understanding of what is involved. The advice contained in The Couple’s Tao Te Ching: Ancient Advice for Modern Lovers by William Martin addresses this: “Spinning words together to create vows will not unite two souls; Pouring over words in marriage manuals will not pour sprit into a relationship. Words may speak of love but they cannot create it.”
A couple’s disagreements become not just a reflection of two highly strung people insistent upon their own way, but a more common one of two egos in a struggle for survival. The ego is a hardy foe and will sometimes fight to the death as it were, the death of a marriage, commitment or relationship. In some cases, neither party seems to really know what happened. What couples in a relationship say is that they simply drew apart and did not meet each other‘s needs. Oftentimes, the couple’s next relationship is with somebody who usually meets their needs more sufficiently, but ultimately, there is always some dissatisfaction because the basic core of complete acceptance and tolerance of each other is missing.
“Perfection cannot be attained, but it can be noticed. If you pay full attention to what seems flawed and ordinary you will notice the perfection hiding beneath appearances. If you pay full attention to each other you will notice how perfectly you are each becoming who you really are.”
On the healing purpose of conflict:
“If you must oppose one another, do it as a physician nursing a body back to health, never as an attacking general, leading an army to victory. To attack is to believe that your beloved is the enemy you must conquer. Your beloved is never the enemy. Let your conflict be a source of revelation. Learn the deeper, subtler, hidden aspects of each other. This will be the victory each of you desires.”
A radical but ancient healing prescription of love for not only couples in trouble, but couples everywhere who are committed to loving each other in the deepest, most spiritual way.
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