Intimacy

I’m not sure how to respond to this. If I were to respond directly to your topic with my opinion, I’m afraid that I might inadvertently poke a sore spot. Has someone hurt you by making comparisons between yourself and another person, making you think that you wouldn’t be attractive enough? That someone can also be yourself.

Attraction, and even lust, is about much more than just physical appearance. Also, what is visually appealing to one person can be appalling to someone else. On top of that there is also chemistry, and on top of that, other emotions that you feel towards the person you find attractive. It’s a combination of our own history and our mutual history with the other person and our own ability to feel a variety of emotions.

I do not know whether social media keeps us emotionally immature, or simply makes us more aware of how immature we really are. Our society keeps changing, but our basic needs stay the same. Easy access to porn is not a replacement for intimacy, and I think that even those who are addicted to porn would know that. I think that we all desire to have an intimate connection with another human. Creating that connection is easier for some people and harder for others. Our brains develop all the time, and depending on what kind of relationships you had as a child, you may find it easy to have deep emotional connections with other people, or you might find it exceptionally hard. Not everyone is willing to work hard on healing and developing what was left underdeveloped. But I digress…

Healthy relationships require healthy people. What is healthy and normal for each individual, varies. I personally am sexually attracted to men who exude a certain masculinity. I also know that the masculinity comes with interest and appreciation towards females. If a man isn’t interested nor attracted to women, then it causes my own attraction to drop. So if I want to be in a relationship with a man I am sexually attracted to, I need to accept the fact that he is appreciative of femininity in general. If I were to expect him to be only appreciative of my curves and nobody else’s, then I would be neutering him and thus making him unappealing to me. But…that is just me, and that is just one part of the whole equation. To be appreciative, to be attracted to, to have sex with and to be in love with are all different things. What constitutes betrayal within a specific relationship depends on that relationship, but it should be communicated. If you think that the other person should not even look at others, and your partner thinks that it’s perfectly natural, then it will lead to a disaster. However, what your personal inclination is is also firmly tied with how honest you are with yourself and how confident you are about who you are. Even the most sexually open-minded person can feel threatened if they feel insecure within a relationship.

So, emotional maturity (your own and your partner’s), authenticity, confidence and trust in oneself and the other are all requirements for a truly healthy relationship, regardless of what is happening in the society.

The Ruminant in Reddit


 reflectionsImage by ecstaticist on Flickr

Feeling guilty

The problem with this epiphany was that it was occurring within me, but not within my husband. How could I expect otherwise, after all I was the one who was changing. In relationships we all paddle through life in separate canoes in hopes that through communication, compromise and concentration we can maintain the same direction. My husband’s canoe was veering off in a very different direction.

We floated along this very way for quite some time, somehow keeping our canoes close enough to maintain our relationship. We continued to spend our weekends with friends and I continued to feel guilty, trying to maintain my exercise regime, clean eating and hobbies. It was a vicious cycle, one that I wanted to change, but wasn’t quite sure how.

Tina Williamson


escape from the south sideImage by Undergroundbastard on flickr

Clean relation

We say that mental activity is the problem. But this is certainly not the case! Many of you may be familiar with the famous Fire Sermon of the Buddha where basically he says, ‘The mind is not the problem; the senses are not the problem; the objects of the senses and of the mind are not the problem. The problem is the relationship between the mind and its objects, between the senses and their objects. And this relationship is charged with attachment, aversion and ignorance. So the problem is in the relationship; it is not in the mind or in the objects of the mind; it is not in the mental activity. And yet that mental activity is impregnated with what is called the kilesas, the toxins, attachments, fears, aversions, ignorance. This is the important thing in considering proliferation, in considering and reflecting on papanca 1.

Buddha cited by Corrado Pensa


Mijocama by Phil Grondin, on FlickrImage by Phil Grondin on flickr

  1. The original meaning of papanca is ‘unfolding’, the constant unfolding, constant proliferation of our mind.

Honoring yourself

This is my life. I am here to stay in this life of mine. I am willing to respectfully honor everyone in my life now by being wholly present, by being wholly committed, by being wholly available for the best for all of us to unfold.

Rakhi Kumar


leaf sets 067-003 by jacki-dee, on FlickrImage by jacki-dee on flickr

Friendship

Friendship is a word which we all use in our everyday language, and yet it could take one’s whole life only to realize its meaning. However learned a person may be, however pious, spiritual, or experienced, if he has not learned that nature and character of friendship he has not learned anything. This is the first and the last thing we have to learn. We so often use this word lightly, calling every acquaintance a friend, or professing to be somebody’s friend; but the more we realize the meaning of it, the less we are able to claim friendship. For everything in life we are tested, examined, and tried, but to pass this examination of friendship is the most difficult thing in the world.

What is the reason for this? Why is it so difficult to be a friend? One would think that it was the easiest thing there is! The reason is that there is something in ourselves which is always against our being friendly. It is the the ego. As long as this ego is standing and lives, a man cannot claim to be anybody’s friend. And when he is not somebody else’s friend he is not even his own friend, for one learns friendship by being a friend to another. A selfish man may seem to be a friend to himself but, it is on the surface, not in reality. He has not yet learned how to be a friend to another, so he cannot be a friend to himself. In our pursuit of truth we want to learn a great many things: the nature of life, the secret of life, the character of life; and to understand the meaning of friendship seems so easy and simple that we never trouble to think about it, nor about the responsibility of being a friend.

It is a simple lesson, and it is a lesson that we have to learn; today when nations are against nations and races against races, when communities are against communities, and one religion against another, it is now that friendship is so much needed. Besides, friendship is the first lesson of spirituality that one can learn. One may think that friendship, a personal friendship, means nothing; that one does not become spiritual through a personal friendship. But one does.

A person begins his spiritual accomplishment by learning how to be a friend. For one who is really treading the path of friendship need not go anywhere to learn morals. Friendship itself teaches him sincerity, gratitude, sympathy, tenderness, appreciation; all these things that we must learn in this world, friendship teaches us.

And once a man begins to learn these things through friendship with one person, he will naturally show to others the same virtues which, he has acquired by going along this path. Just as someone who has learned how to sing beautifully will naturally sing every song that is given to him beautifully. The one who has cultivated his heart through friendship will naturally be inclined to be friends with others.

The meaning of friendship is too sacred to realize. All other relationships and connections in this life are empty if friendship is not at the back of them to strengthen them. The relationship between mother and daughter, father and son, brother and sister, husband and wife, teacher and pupil, all these connections need a spirit behind them; and this spirit is the spirit of friendship. When a daughter says, ‘I am friends with my mother,’ there is something beautiful about it. It makes the connection between a mother and a daughter a different thing. It makes it living. In every relationship it is the same. When there is friendship to bind the relationship it makes it secure, it gives it life.

Hazrat Inayath Khan (1882-1927), a Sufi Master through 1000 petals by Axinia | FRIENDSHIP – Why It Is The Ultimate Form Of Any Relationship


Autunno by Cinzia A. Rizzo / fataetoile, on FlickrImage by Cinzia A. Rizzo / fataetoile on flickr