Tag Archives: relationships

1 + 1 = 11: We are getting married! 我們要結婚了!

Dear friends,

I am very happy to announce that since Wednesday, Elly and I are engaged: we are getting married! Our families and friends have given us their blessings and support, for which we are grateful.

I would like to make use of this moment to write something about my perspective on love and relationships, because

  1. most conversations about spirituality that I have been in, are actually conversations about relationships and
  2. most people, that includes Elly and me (!), were pleasantly surprised to hear about our decision because they never thought I would want to get married.

When I observe the people around me, and the relationships that they are having with their partners, I only find very few people who seem to understand the purpose and meaning of that relationship. I believe this is the root cause for most, if not all, problems that are commonly experienced in relationships.

According to what I have seen so far, most people are directly or indirectly seeking ‘being loved’, ‘being fulfilled’, ‘being accepted’, etc. in their relationship. This is because they have entered into one

  1. because they have not learned how to enjoy aloneness and want to stop feeling lonely, and/or
  2. because the social habit of being in a relationship motivates them to engage in one, and/or
  3. due to social pressures forcing them into it.

One of the ‘secrets of life’ that I have discovered is that whatever you are seeking outside yourself, is something you haven’t found inside yourself. When you seek to be loved, you have not loved yourself. When you seek to be accepted, you have not accepted yourself. When you seek to be fulfilled, you have not found fulfilment within yourself.

I am now fully convinced that in order for a human being to be happy, he will have to find love, acceptance, fulfilment and all these within himself. Although it is definitely possible that another person leads you to the experience of love, acceptance and fulfilment, it never lasts. This is because that person cannot be around you all the time, and moreover, that person is probably also not skilled enough to express love continuously.

What you can gain in a relationship is a an enjoyable and safe environment in which love for the self and for others can be practiced. I explicitly say that love is practiced in a relationship because it is not an easy thing at all.

Love means giving the best and highest you have selflessly. In a relationship, you find all the barriers you have built within yourself against the love that rests even deeper within. You find your subtle and not-so-subtle selfishness.

Love means accepting everything and rejecting nothing. It is so easy to love the qualities of others, and it is so hard to love the limitations of others. And that is what you are confronted with in a relationship: the qualities and limitations of you and your partner.

When I see my partner, I feel inspired because of how far she already is in her practice of love. It is an inspiration to me. She gives me the space to make mistakes and learn from them and I sincerely wish that I give her that same space.

The best thing I know to say to another is not “I love you.” but “In my heart, there is a space for you where you can be yourself with all your qualities and limitations.”.

Although there is much more to say about relationships, I’d rather leave you with a saying of Swami Rama to contemplate upon. In a relationship, 1 and 1 does not make 2, but 11.

親愛的朋友:

我非常開心和大家宣布,從上星期三起,我和Elly訂婚了,我們要結婚了!我們的家人和朋友已經給予我們許多支持與祝福,對此我們感到非常感激!

我想利用這個機會,寫一點我對感情關係的看法,因為:

  1. 在修行中,我所經歷過的對話,大部分都與感情關係有關;
  2. 大部分的人(包括Elly和我)在得知我們要結婚後,都是既開心又驚訝,因為他們沒想過我們會想結婚。

當我觀察身邊的人以及他們的伴侶的感情關係時,我發現,只有極少數的人似乎了解他們感情關係的真正目的與意義。我相信這是大部分,甚至是所有的感情問題的根源。

根據我所觀察到的,大部分人可能直接或間接地尋求在感情裡「被愛」、「被滿足」、「被接受」等等。這是因為,這些人之所以展開一段感情,是:

  1. 因為他們尚未學習享受獨處,但又想停止感到寂寞;
  2. 因為擁有感情關係的社會習慣使得他們談論/展開感情;
  3. 因為社會壓力而展開一段感情。

我發現「人生秘密」之一是,不管你在自身之外追尋什麼,你所追尋的,正是你在自己內心無法尋得的。當你尋求被愛時,你其實不愛自己。當你尋求被接受時,你其實尚未接受自己。當你尋求被滿足時,你在自己內心無法找到滿足與成就。

現在我完全相信,一個人若要快樂,他將必須在自己內心找到愛、接受和滿足。雖然另一個人可能引領你找到愛、接受和滿足,但這從來不會持久,這是因為這個人無法總是在你身邊,再者,這個人可能沒有辦法持續地表達愛。I

你可能在一段感情關係獲得一個愉快且安全的環境。在當中,你可以練習對自己和對他人的愛。我特別指出愛是在感情關係中被練習,這是因為它並非簡單的事。

愛意謂著把你所擁有的最美好、最崇高的一切無私地給與。在一段感情關係中,你將發現你內心築起的、隔絕更深一層的愛的障礙。你發現內心所有細微的或明顯的自私。

愛意謂著接受一切,什麼也不拒絕。愛其他人的優點是容易的,但愛其他人的短處就不那麼簡單了。這正是在一段感情關係裡所必須面對的:你和你的伴侶的優點與缺點。

當我看著我的伴侶,我內心深受啟發,因為她在愛的練習中,已經走了很長一段路。她給予我犯錯並且從中學習的空間,而我真心地希望,我給予她同樣的空間。

我所知道最美好的話,不是「我愛你」,而是「在我心中為你留了一個位置,在那裡,不管是優點或缺點,你可以做你自己。」.

關於感情關係,還有很多值得分享的,但就讓我以拉瑪大師的一句話做結,讓我們大家一起好好思考:一加一不等於二,而是十一。

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