Who are they really?
Excerpt from 'It's not you... and it's not me'
…we get to meet the other person. Well, as close as possible as it is to meet them.
The perception of them still belongs to us, the perceiver.
But with less and less projection of the innermost needs and insecurities onto them, there is now nothing pushing them away.
With less and less meaning of who they are, there are no barriers between us.
With less and less depending on their responses and feelings about us, their words can actually be heard.
The projection is falling away and it is revealing… what…?
It is revealing that they are the same as us.
A miracle of universal intelligence in a temporary, perception created form.
A miracle of consciousness in which everything appears.
A miracle of beingness.
A miracle of life animating a programme of conditioned beliefs, preferences and behaviours.
A miracle, ultimately of unconditional love.
From the space of unconditional love, where nothing has to be secured or changed, anything is possible.
What happens now?
It is impossible to tell. As wounds are healed, the conditioned programme changes and the lived experience of what we are transforms. Desires shift. Attractions change. The form of relationships evolves. Behaviours can be completely different.
The difference is that there is no longer a programme of yearning locked into the other. The unconscious dependence on what they represent, how they make us feel, what they secure or what undesirable experiences they appear to hold at bay is dissolving.
We have become a different person in a different reality —or rather there is a new mind-body programme operating from a more real, whole and complete basis.
It is remarkable how changes happen automatically and almost imperceptibly from this place.
That person who we were so desperate to get back might now simply fade from our mind and our life.
Or we might find them doing what we had prayed they would—calling us, apologising, asking to meet, to have us back—but now something has changed. We can’t quite describe what happened but there is just no longer that need for them.
Or we might find the relationship which was once full of angst and heaviness, lightening, becoming fun and easy.
The other person might seem different while still the same. The aspects of their character that used to drive us mad with frustration might no longer even exist. We might notice new strengths and capacity in them. They might even look different to us now.
Let’s have a look at this process in terms of the evolution of relationships:
In the most unhealthy relationships, two individuals both operating from a deep programme of lack, make each other ever more vulnerable and lost. We are locked in together like two fighting stags, antlers entangled, dragging each other to an exhausted collapse. The roller coaster of control and chaos, validation and vitriol, approval and rejection keeps us both in a state of utter confusion.
Violence, substance abuse, emotional detachment, authoritarianism, absence, blame, self-blame, financial, sexual and emotional abuse can occur as we exacerbate each other’s instability while simultaneously trying to escape our own.
It looks like the only solution is to try to make the other change. This can never work.
The only possibility is to see how this relationship is revealing everything that we are trying to escape within us. This is not easy as we are already so low and defeated. To stay present and accountable without sliding into an identity of failure may take everything we have. But it is possible. There are many people who have trodden this path ahead of us, making it clearer all the time.
In reading this book, we have already opened up to this possibility. We are ready.
2. Healing healthily together
From the moment there is a glimpse of the pattern that is triggered when we feel insecure, fearful, ashamed or needy, a gateway opens. There will be bumps along the road of course. If you are anything like me you might be thrown back into the patterns frequently but there is now a new sense that these patterns are not what we are. Rather they are pointing the way to a deeper existence beneath the transient reactions.
This knowing makes us compatible with people who are similarly healing. It becomes more possible to hold a non-reactive space for the other in their times of need and they can do the same for us. There is open communication about fears and vulnerabilities. There is ownership, apologies and genuine forgiveness and understanding when the mist descends and behaviour reverts.
Instead of two deeply unconscious people dragging each other underwater, two increasingly conscious people are lifting each other up. There is a tremendous beauty in this process. Savour every second of it.
3. Fully conscious
Many excellent spiritual teachers are in relationships that shine with love and laughter. Their partner is often present at retreats and talks and, at the same time, distinct in their own right. The sense of connection, joy and freedom between them is palpable.
The ultimately healthy relationship is between two people who understand who they are at the core of their being. These are people whose spirituality has taken them deeper into life, deeper into relationships, deeper into their true nature. Their lives have been a journey of continually dissolving the layers of lack and separation that would stand between them and any other.
They meet now as truth - unconditional love, peace, intelligence, life - in miracle form. And there is still choosing, preferences, attraction. The form of the body does not disappear because the sense of being has lightened.
It seems to me that this is the ultimate purpose of our lives. For our suffering to be the means of our enlightenment and through that to allow us to see people as they really are. To relate to all others from love and freedom.
We love the other because we are love. We understand them because we, finally, understand who we are. We need nothing from them that they cannot actually provide. We want for them what makes them flourish and sparkle physically, mentally and spiritually. We want to hear their authentic truth.
They are love. They are us.
We are love.