I was out for dinner with a friend a while ago and she asked me several interesting questions:

• “Why are relationships one of the most difficult experience there is?”

• “Why do we have such deep, innate desire to seek romantic relationships or loving partners?”

• “Why is it that at some level we feel incomplete unless we are in an intimate relationship with another?”

• How do we create peace in our relationships?

The following is what transpired.

As humans, we are undergoing an evolutionary impulse towards self-realization. The user manual is built within us. It is the all pervading, infinite conscious intelligence of our spirit. More and more of us are participating in this awakening consciously and actively, and are providing a map or template for those who are awakening every day. Intimate relationships provide a very powerful context or arena for our personal awakening.

As we awaken, we realize how strong of a hold our mind, or (personality) ego has had over us. Self realization is the realization that we are not our mind and it’s programming, but the infinite, limitless consciousness of spirit. We are powerful beings of love, peace, and joy. We learn about the true nature of this Universal Divine Intelligence as it moves and comes into existence within us through the our life experiences, through our connections with others, particularly intimate relationships.

Intimate Relationships are the perfect mirror that reflects back to us what we need to transform within us to fulfill our highest purpose of realizing our true self, and to create the love, passion, and peace we want to experience. In living our intimate relationships, we have the opportunity to learn about the programming of our mind that causes suffering and conflict. When we are able to identify the mental, and emotional underlying structures and patterns that generate dissatisfaction, criticism and conflict in our intimate relationships, we are more easily able to retrain our mind to fulfill the purpose that it was meant for, which is to be a conduit of our higher consciousness. Our higher consciousness knows only unconditional love, peace, compassion, understanding, allowing, clarity, wisdom, truth, and joy, what it takes to create and sustain an authentic relationship.

The content of our mind: thoughts, beliefs, values, as well as the world “out there”, including relationships are always reflections of who we are. The reflection, just like a mirror, shows us whatever is in us that is out of alignment with the true essence of who we are. We experience issues and we are unhappy in our relationships, because we are functioning from a level of disconnection from our True authentic Self! Remember everything “out there” is a reflection of what is going on inside.

Intimate relationships provide the most powerful context for working through all of the issues and fears that stand in the way of ultimately experiencing our Source, which is the place inside of us that is free of conflicts, fear, struggle, and guilt. We attract into our life the partner who will perfectly reflect (the mirror) what fears, struggle, conflict, and guilt that are in our way. By working through them, healing them and transforming them, we can then be free. Free to become masters of our whole self and life, to create patterns and habits that serve our highest purpose, and facilitate manifestation of our ultimate life. The underlying force that allows this unconscious process to unfold is love. Our soul's love and desire for us to return back to our authentic state of Being, creates the scenarios in our life that will provide the opportunities necessary for this process. Every situation and person along our life's path is an opportunity for the awakening and remembrance of our authentic nature, no matter what its appearance or enfoldment.

We all want to confirm and experience our existence by primarily loving and being loved. We attract a partner with whom we will be able to experience that with. Love goes out there and calls love back to itself. For a period of time that lasts approximately six months to a year (romantic stage), love seems to be what we live for. We live the magic and the bliss of “being in-love”. However, this magic does not seem to last forever, as a matter of fact, after some months, it seems to evaporate, or run away somewhere, and in its place there is something else left: disappointment, anger, blame and conflict.
“What happened? Why did the dream end? What went wrong, or what is wrong with me, or better, what is wrong with him/her?” These are the questions that plague us around this time of apparent demise of our relationships. This is when it becomes challenging to maintain passion, practice effective, compassionate communication, and experience intimacy. The story line is a fixed one in most relationships that goes something like this: Meeting, in-love, romance, passion, pleasure, bliss, dreams, plans, expectations, projections, disappointment, more projections, blame, anger, hurt, more projection, conflict, sometimes despair, END!

It is a battle played out there between the two of us. The only focus is on you. What you think is wrong, what you say that is wrong, what you do that is wrong, how you hurt me, don’t meet my needs, do not fulfill my dreams, how you disappoint, anger, irritate, betray me, how you do not do what I want…you are not what I want, I want out! This is what we know, what we have learned by observing the world around us as we were growing up (except for some TV sitcoms were they portray perfect families/relationships). This model is a sure recipe for failure, unhappiness, and loneliness.

IS THIS ALL THERE IS? No, of course not!

After the being-in-love stage, (when our eyes seem to be covered by lenses that allow everything to appear positive, beautiful, perfect) the magic lenses come down and we are able to see the imperfections of the other, the things that we have not want to see and secretly wished they did not exist. What makes it more complicated is that the other has taken the magic lenses off and sees the imperfections in us, sometimes the exact same imperfections. What is really going on? If we keep on remembering the idea of the mirror and its reflections, then we can start deciphering the clues. The analogy of the mirror is very powerful because it is such a perfect example of how another person reflects back to us what we are not able to see, yet it is what we need to become aware of before we can make changes. Then we move through other layers in order to achieve the transformation and experience true intimacy: in-to-me-see!

Awareness, conscious awareness is the first key. This is the first movement in the whole process of transformation to be our Authentic Self. Awareness happens because of our willingness to examine the reflection that the other person is giving us, as well as examining our thoughts and feelings, without judgment, in a neutral way. In the new paradigm of Authentic Relationships, our relationship with our thoughts and feelings has to be of a different nature. Our thoughts and feelings, even the so called negative ones, have a purpose, a function, which is to inform us of what is going on inside of us: how out of alignment with our Authentic Self we are! Negative thoughts and feelings are a guiding mechanism, a barometer that indicates to us when we are off course, when we are not connected with our natural state of being. Imagine driving your car, and the gas level indicator starts blinking to let you know the gas level is low and you need to refill, do you take the information and act upon it, or do you start stressing out, becoming anxious, depressed, or being angry at it? Our emotions and thoughts have the same function as the gas level indicator in our car, so instead of being upset and judging ourselves for having the emotions, we could, instead, approach them in the following way: “ok, I am feeling______. I am not happy for feeling this way, but let me inquire a little deeper to find out what is going on”. This inquiry serves to clarify what we truly want and need. All desires and need are a reflection of the ultimate desire for love. When our thoughts and emotions indicate that we are out of alignment with our Conscious Awareness, they serve as a reminder to get back in touch with our true self.

If, as we have said, the main reason we experience issues in our relationships is because we are not connected with our Authentic Self, then ultimately, the only way to experience authenticity, love, passion, peace, and intimacy (in-to-me-see), is to find, and connect with the true Self, and the true state of love within.

Copyright August 2, 2008 by Medea Chechik, M. Div, www.selftransformation.ca

Author's Bio: 

Medea Chechik, M. Div.
For the last 16 years, Medea Chechik has led her own private practice in Toronto as a Transformational Psychotherapist and Relationship Coach. She has facilitated training in The Self in Transformation, Authentic Communication, Authentic Relationships, and The Amazing Woman Program. Medea’s unique style has evolved naturally from her own self-transformation and spiritual development, as well as her 20 years of training.

Medea’s lifelong quest for knowledge and wisdom led her to the study and practice of the teachings of many of the world’s spiritual traditions, such as Advaita, Buddhism and Meditation, Shamanism, Goddess Spirituality, and Christian Mysticism. Her passionate, charismatic presence makes her a very inspiring and powerful teacher. With truth, compassion and humour, she helps others become the empowered creators of their self and life.