Different initiations in a relationship

The different initiations in a relationship was part of the alchemy of relationships weekend.  What happens when you first fall in love?  You see something of the ideal or you project your ideal. So what is the ideal, what are you projecting?  Your own higher self is being projected onto that person. You are idolising them.

You can see love in all figures but this doesn’t mean that you have to marry everyone.  We become loving as we grow older and wiser. By implication we have more capacity to love many people. It becomes easier and easier to fall in love but we don’t have to act it out. Through wisdom we can see what is happening within ourselves.

The shadow has a place.  Without the shadow there could be no discrimination.  The only way you get to see different shading is because of the shadow.  In art the strongest line is black.  We can recognise differences.  Little children who are innocent, have no recognition of the shadow.  They can be so easily manipulated or hurt very easily. As they grow up they become aware of the shadow by being trained to not do this or that or not to speak to this or that person. It is through the shadow we grow and by being conscious of it we discover what it is to be human.

A lot of religions and spiritual movements make the mistake of believing we are all ultimately good.  Yes, we are all ultimately good but our actions belie their truth. The flower children movement of the 1960s failed because it didn’t recognise the shadow. The transpersonal is all about maintaining balance. The challenge of a relationship is unconditional love. The mistake of society is that it only sees the shadow and it becomes very controlling. We are protected from dark forces and dangerous people. The balance is to be able to see the shadow and the light.

Why are some people always falling for the bad boy?  They are seeking badness so they want to become aware of the badness. This is their way of accessing the shadow.

The same is true in relationships.  Everything is great and harmonious until we discover a bad habit  in our partner.  The ideal gives way to reality.  Why do couples break up? How many times have we heard people say You are not the person I feel in love with?  In a relationship you are being challenged to engage in unconditional love. Couples mainly break up through lack of communication, messiness, lack of intimacy etc. The ideal gives way to reality, which can be more self-centred and defensive.

Different initiations in a relationship:

1. Commitment:  No-one is absolutely safe to commit to.  It is an act of faith to commit to a relationship. The ego is surrendering, otherwise there is a conditional relationship.

2. Being tested in relationships: Patience, tolerance, fidelity and truth.  We can fail but we can make reparations.  However, you break up if you keep failing. Testing is a ritual.

3. Empathise/understand each other as we both are: Assimilate each other, create a bond. Helps the two of you to get through difficult things in life.

4. Begin to see the ideal in the other:  Not in mind but in heart.  You are seeing the ideal.  Some see this as the vision of the soul or essence.

5.  Take responsibility for reminding partner of their quality: “active vision”. The building of the ideal must be mutual.

6. Seeing the ideal (the 4th stage of love): Mirroring back to each other. Spiritual realisation.

Related post The Alchemy of Relationships

Additional resources
Anima and Animus
10 signs you are falling in love
The science of love
Falling in Love
Falling in love can take a fifth of a second

About Noel Bell

Psychotherapist in London. Check out my blog posts and more at www.noelbell.net
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