On the Spiritual Path in Relationship: How to Approach the Scenario of the Reluctant Partner?
You are only as Enlightened as the relationship dynamics in your life allow you to be, to the degree that you are able to hold space for your Spirit within them.
It helps immensely if in an intimate relationship, both partners are called to ‘Wake Up’ to a similar degree of intensity. If this isn’t the case and you are in a relationship wherein you are called to Spirit but your partner is not at all then how to proceed? Can we continue to grow spiritually from this relationship?
It depends upon the degree to which your partner is reluctant to your spiritual growth. If they are not interested in active pursuit of spiritual growth for themselves but are supportive of your journey then a way through can be found. In this scenario, avoid spiritual dogma. If we push one into spirituality, they are sure to develop a deeper resistance to it. Instead, focus sincerely on your spiritual practices and become the witness of the judging/critical mind. Once your partner begins to receive the fruits of your spiritual practices, an unexpected moment of Compassion, Understanding or Patience, the Love between you will deepen and purify, the benefits of the spiritual path become visible.
On the other hand, if your partner is not able to be supportive, and perhaps even ridicules your perspective or attempts to prevent you from your spiritual practices (such as meditation) then you have strayed into an abusive dynamic and contemplation (on your part) and sincere communication with your partner needs to take place. There should at least be a respect for the ‘awakening’ process that you are in within the relationship. In this way the foundations are in place for you to forge a dynamic between you in which Spirit can be empowered.
Perhaps you are in a relationship where you are wondering how to balance it alongside your path of Spiritual Enlightenment?
In this scenario, find a way to always be meditating! Try to develop awareness practices that allow you to keep some of your awareness on the inside at all times, allowing you to be fully Present with the living moment. In India this is known as being in the world but not of the world. For extra help calming the mind, you could also chant a mantra internally. This you can be doing whenever and wherever you are. One such mantra is provided in our book for any that doesn’t have one. To this end, there is a teaching given to us by Amma, ‘the hugging saint’. If there is one at a party whose mind is in the vibration of the temple, and there is one at the temple whose mind is on the party, who gets the most spiritual benefit? The one who is at the party whose mind is on God.
Yet, if one is in an intimate relationship that causes one to ask the question: “What about my Spiritual Enlightenment?” then perhaps one needs to turn within and enquire: what is the purpose of this relationship?
What is this relationship giving me? What is it for? If the answer is not, “to grow and deepen spiritually” then as a person seeking Spiritual Enlightenment one has to ask of one self, why this relationship? Is it serving me? Or am I serving it? And what is the ‘it’ I am serving?
So what does a relationship as a path to Spiritual Enlightenment look like? In our own relationship, which has been focused on Spiritual Liberation since ‘day 1’, we have entered a natural flow and rhythm with one another.
We seem to intuitively know what the other is feeling or wanting because we are in tune with each other, to Spirit, to feelings. And what we don’t know intuitively, we talk about. There are no big secrets or mysteries we keep from each other; our communication is direct and honest and that makes it simple. Space is always available in our relationship to speak the deepest truths, fears, concerns, desires etc. We don’t hold each other to them, but we know sometimes stuff just needs to be said. Otherwise what stays hidden can grow in power and can run one from the inside if not even just from our resistance to it.
There is also no pressure in our relationship for being responsible for each other’s happiness. We know if we are empowering Spirit and following our inner calling, all needs are met. There is no pressure to be anything for the other. Just to be our Selves which in itself is a Liberation. One connected to That is naturally compassionate and overflows Unconditional Love to all. We have made a lot of space for Spirit/God/the Eternal Presence in our lives.
And the Key? We do not identify one another as emotional charge, as our pain bodies and in this way we are free to heal ourselves again and again from all and any conflict that may arise as we reclaim every single lost piece of ourselves from negative thoughts and dark emotions.
By Maha Brown and David Pan Brown, Authors of The Esoteric Path of Marriage: A Guide To Spiritual Enlightenment Through Relationship