A spiritual partnership is a partnership between equals for the purpose of spiritual growth. This agreement between two people places the growth of their souls above the convenience of a “comfortable,” conventional relationship.
Speaking of, and referring to material contained in his latest book, author, Gary Zukov tells readers that a new and surprising world is emerging that requires each of us to explore the sources of our love and cultivate them while observing the inner sources of all that prevents us from loving and feeling loved. The root of these blocks are our fears. However, for those who are ready, a conscious relationship between spiritual partners can place us on the fast track to healing. Our evolution has taken a new path, and our relationships are changing in unexpected and dramatic ways. Fear has no place here – too bad it’s still so scary! Help may come from this new view of relationship – seeing them as constructive partnerships with a larger purpose than romance and even equal to the challenge of raising a family.
Zukov says, “We are evolving beyond the limits of our five senses and encountering more expanded experiences of ourselves and our world than were previously possible. Where once our perception was confined to what we see, hear, taste, touch, and smell, we are now increasingly able to access data that these senses cannot detect. This expanded perception is forever altering our experiences of ourselves, our world, and our relationships.”
Our evolution now presents us at each moment with a profound choice: we can pretend that our lives and the world are not changing and continue to relate to one another as before, or we can use our relationships to transform ourselves into authentically powerful, loving individuals.
In Spiritual Partnership, Zukav relates details of this new relationship dynamic that enables us to reach our full potential and create authentic power. I admit that this sounds like total, “Boomeristic,” narcissism. However, a fulfilling and joyful life becomes a gift – our presence can be a gift to everyone we encounter. Working from this perspective makes the whole idea of personal or spiritual growth something more like an obligation to others rather than an involuted, selfish sink hole.
Not currently in a relationship – romantic or otherwise? Spiritual partnerships are not only for couples in marriage, they can be created anywhere two or more individuals decide to engage as equals for the purpose of spiritual development.
The “Equal” part of this can’t be faked. You must feel strong enough to stand with, as well as stand up to this person who would be your partner. Accepting observations that often as not will not be pleasing to hear make it paramount that you respect and trust the person who is speaking into the depths of your life. It goes without saying that trust and respect must be mutual.
In a word – two words – it’s button pushing with a commitment to stand back from whatever reaction might rise in those micro moments after the words leave our partner’s lips. Did he/she say something that made you angry or sad? The hard truth is – no one ever made you feel anything. Once we see and accept this fact, we can get on with the reconstruction of our interior landscape – the world of memories and experiences. Note – these are just our memories – memories do not necessarily reflect the truth of our past experiences. What is important now is the way we feel when someone says a particular thing. Making the commitment to look at our negative reactions to anothers’ words or actions is the engine that will drive an interior revolution – resulting in greater freedom – freedom to choose our responses rather than to continually fall under the weight of habitual reactions.
Responses rather than reactions. No one ever makes us angry. We choose our response or react out of habit. Our partner, like few others will push our buttons and we will choose to look into our self systems – that combination of nerve pathways, reactive patterns and the feelings we fashion from this fabric. Do we dare enter into a partnership – the goal of which is to grow up and out of fear?
This is not for everyone. We, human beings, the flowers of conscious evolution open according to patterns and schedules that cannot be predicted. I almost said we cannot be forced to grow – to open. While this is true – we can be encouraged. If we consent, we can benefit from the aid of those we live closest to. Don’t give up on roses and chocolate – the advent of spiritual partnerships do not make loving gestures obsolete. But give up your right to defend your feelings. Give up your tendency to run and hide when the scary things come to the surface – generated by the words of your partner. Give in. Give up, Surrender. All these phrases – old words – but tried and true.
In the end, a fear confronted is a weight we no longer must carry. Prying it from our frightened hands – well… it may prove difficult. No sense in sugar coating this description of the process. Sugar coating, as we call it, has given us diabetes of the soul.
Just two last notes. Zukov is careful to emphasize the importance of timing and love. What this means is that this new relational dynamic of button pushing and self examination is not a call for ruthless truth telling and soul wrenching self deconstruction. Gently, gently. We don’t need to begin looking for the weakness of our partner. They do not need us to tell them every little “truth” that comes to mind. The implication is that simply being together – the acts of everyday living – will bring up all the truth we need to see. So, the commitment is not so much about telling your partner what you see in them – rather we want to commit to watching our reactions to whatever our partner says in the normal course of events. Whatever comes up! Yes – there will be times when a specific issue is intentionally addressed. But this should be the exception rather than a regular habit.
Last. Pray. Prayer does not exactly fit here – it’s just that it fits everywhere. By prayer I mean the silent kind where you quiet the voice of your mind – let it grow quiet by not feeding or feeding on it. Stand open in your heart space – open and receptive to mysteries. The greatest mystery seems to be that we are known and loved much more than we can allow ourselves to imagine. The point is that there is nothing to be afraid of – nothing to defend by choosing to react in anger. Meditation, silent prayer – either practice is another way to invite truth – true things to surface and inform our lives.
In this life we have business partners, drinking partners. There are partners in crime and partners in heroic adventures – climbing partners. And we have domestic partnerships that now days take on an ever wider array of colors and complexity. Among our many strategic and friendly associations, consider entering into a spiritual partnership. It just might be the best deal you ever make.