Need help

Talk about relationships in the context of Spiritual Enlightenment
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jadev
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Need help

Post by jadev » Tue Nov 19, 2013 4:01 pm

Me and my boyfriend have been in a long distance relationship for almost two years now. It wasn't easy when it started but everything became different when he started practicing the Power of Now, around June 2012 (he had discovered the book a year before that but it really got to him a bit later). He changed and I couldn't be more grateful, he even said once that I would have left him if he hadn't, which is partly true. Seeing him change made me read the book as well (I still have a couple of pages left).

Until recently everything was wonderful, we were not fighting, we meditated together, it felt great to accept him the way he was, without judging or expecting something from him. Once he said he didn't feel like saying "I love you" anymore because these are just words and they are superficial, got rid of our photos he had in his room etc. According to him, it wasn't personal and I accepted it, without holding a grudge or anything. Sometimes we talk about true love and addictive love, the way the book describes it. He used to say that there were moments in the past when he felt it but it only lasted for 10-20 seconds and he still had a long way to go to get to the point when he feels it 24/7. Now he is saying it doesn't matter, the past in general doesn't matter (and I agree) and seems like it is the only thing that makes him be with me. The addiction (his addiction) is becoming smaller and smaller (and I see it as something positive, those who read the book know what I mean), it makes his attraction towards me disappear and when it is completely gone he will either feel this true love or nothing at all. I am going to visit him soon and when I asked whether he wanted me to come he said he didn't care and didn't even want to ask himself the question.

I am confused. I respect his position and on the one hand accept it but there is this voice in my head (that I thought I managed to get rid of) that makes me suffer and it won't stop. I don't really know what to do and how to be around him, what to say.

Has anyone experienced what my boyfriend is going through? I would really welcome any comments or advice

P.S. And I should probably say that there is no other girl, I've never questioned the way he felt about me, we spent the whole October together and everything was fine.
Last edited by jadev on Tue Nov 19, 2013 10:44 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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dijmart
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Re: Need help

Post by dijmart » Tue Nov 19, 2013 10:41 pm

So, he doesn't want to say he loves you, doesn't want to see your picture, doesn't care if you visit, doesn't even want to ask himself if he cares if you visit.... sounds like something more is going on here.

On a spiritual note, you can still be very loving towards others and not be attached in a needy way. If his actions have anything to do with spirituality in his mind I would say he has a misunderstanding of the teachings.
Take what you like and leave the rest.

jadev
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Re: Need help

Post by jadev » Wed Nov 20, 2013 1:46 am

Thank you for you reply.
As for "something more is going on", I'm not really sure. We've spent almost 4 weeks together recently, with his family and friends, and it was amazing. And we skype every day and he always says if something's not ok.
How would you say to a person that he misinterprets the teachings, in a nice way without making it worse? What is in your opinion the main idea? I don't really know how to talk to him anymore. I've watched Eckhart's videos on relationships, read some interviews etc. but it feels like whatever I say to him, pretty much repeating Eckhart's ideas, is not enough. He has become slightly obsessed with being not obsessed. At least I see it this way.

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Onceler
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Re: Need help

Post by Onceler » Wed Nov 20, 2013 3:02 am

I would say keep it real. Figure out what you need from a relationship and tell him the truth. I think pretending to be more spiritual than you are can be more damaging than not being spiritual at all.
Be present, be pleasant.

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dijmart
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Re: Need help

Post by dijmart » Wed Nov 20, 2013 4:35 am

jadev wrote:As for "something more is going on"
Just my way of saying I don't know him, but the behavior itself is a bit fishy if you ask me.
How would you say to a person that he misinterprets the teachings, in a nice way without making it worse?
I agree with Onceler in that you shouldn't pretend to be more spiritual then you are... Don't get into some spiritual battle with him regarding it, he may just be very confused! I would not add to his confusion though by agreeing with him all the time (if you don't) and acting like everything he's doing is A-OK with you, because obviously it is not and that would just be lying for future gain.

You could point out to him that the man whose books he's reading... is married. Yes, Kim Eng is Eckhart Tolle's wife! I'd bet he tells her he loves her, has pics of her around and has an opinion as to whether he sees her or not... Otherwise, why would he have married her?

PS. Sorry you're going through this!
Take what you like and leave the rest.

nutrition
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Re: Need help

Post by nutrition » Sun Nov 24, 2013 2:35 pm

ET and Eng do not live together as far as i read
They only spend a limited time sharing the same space and i doubt ET has pics of her around or stuff like that, because that will denote a high level of attachment. Looking at an image of a person who is not there at the moment will defeat ET's living in the moment.
Usually spiritual teachers do not have relationships of the romantic-sexual kind because they are truly an impediment to living in the moment and detachement from people and things. ET's level of consciuosness probably allows him to be in such relationship, but i am sure he does not manage it the same way non- conscious humans do
In my opinion you bf, given the long distance relationship, has met someone else. Hard to deal with but it is necessary to factor this in.
blessings

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dijmart
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Re: Need help

Post by dijmart » Sun Nov 24, 2013 8:34 pm

Hmm, well an article I read said this as of 2012-

"The Mountains of Vancouver Island, this is where Eckhart Tolle lives with his partner (wife), Kim Eng, a yoga and tai chi instructor, although often in summer they will repair to their house on Salt Spring Island, a two hour ferry ride from Vancouver, so that they might fully immerse themselves in nature."
Take what you like and leave the rest.

nutrition
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Re: Need help

Post by nutrition » Sun Nov 24, 2013 10:39 pm

I found this
Eckhart and Kim are partners. They do share a house in Vancouver Island and have separate apartments also.

it really does not matter
however, i often wonder how he can keep detachment and live with someone...meaning keep being present and in the moment when we all know how challenging relationships are...
again, most spiritual teachers do not have wives.
but this post is not about ET and his personal life
blessing

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smiileyjen101
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Re: Need help

Post by smiileyjen101 » Wed Nov 27, 2013 3:20 am

Jade said:
I am going to visit him soon and when I asked whether he wanted me to come he said he didn't care and didn't even want to ask himself the question.
Jade it may help to break this down as to what is real and what is imagined, assumed or not 'known'.

Given the background that you've given (although I'm still unclear about the 'addiction', that's okay)
on one hand you are saying you accept and appreciate his journeying into acceptance of this moment as it arises, and when you were both 'in it' on your previous stay it was 'amazing'.

On the other - now projecting out of this moment and into some future time - doubts and confusion are arising - well, that's because there is no future here to know yet - not just with your bf - but seriously any moment outside of now is grey at best.

Ask your self is there a lurking 'fear' of the unknown?
Because quite simply, if you live in the moment anything outside of it is accepted as 'unknown'. While the majority put store in plans and create all but tangible expectations, living in the moment one can only very thinly veil a projection, while at the same time knowing that when that moment arrives it will be whatever it will be.

So, would you 'prefer' that he and you made solid 'plans' which then one or the other or both might then be thrown into odds of expectation with? So if he says Yes, Absolutely I want you to come - that then puts an onus of you fulfilling his expectation regardless of what 'happens' in between now and then.

Let me share that I had a friend who would make all the 'concrete' plans in the world, and then actually live in the moment. So one would be awaiting them and they just simply would not arrive. After much angst and frustration it was realised that 'Yes I would like to ....... on whatever time/day that is not now ' in accordance with someone else's wishes meant at that (earlier) moment they did like the idea of it, they would like to...
but in reality unfolding they had stopped holding onto any idea that anyone else would 'expect' them to reach back into the past for some notion of 'liking' an idea that was projecting into a not here and now future... rather than be fully involved in whatever it was they were actually doing at that time.

Absolutely makes for interesting & yes can be confusing experiences - what is happening is that you are speaking 'different' languages in the sense that words do not mean the same to each of you at the moment. We often 'assume' what something means in the absence of understanding what it means to another.

With this friend, I merely learned to check if he meant he WOULD be doing something or just would LIKE to....

I also learned to realise that in the timelessness of the present moment measure of time become waaaayyyyyy different.
'Soon' as in I'll be there 'soon' didn't mean the same thing for him and me - for me it meant he was sorta, nearly, on his way ish... for him it meant he was doing something else at the moment that at some point in time would end, and then he would choose anew what he was doing and as he would 'like' to do whatever it was we had 'planned' that likely might happen at some time sooner rather than never :wink:

Actually a wink is not enough for all the craziness of it.... one thing that he determined he would 'like to do' and would do 'soon' ... when actually explored in relative time based on all the other things he would 'like to do' the 'soon' before it, it was about five years away, so I'm glad I had that clarified for me!! :lol:

You are only response able for your responses - just notice when you move out of acceptance, enjoyment, enthusiasm in the present moment (in ANE) and notice there the resistance to what 'is'. It's a journey from expectation to reality usually.

So here's the freedom that it gives you - if you do decide in that time to go and turn up and all falls into place - that's how the last time was amazing.

If you decide or life happens to decide for you not to go - there will be no recriminations etc - a courtesy call would be fine and you would likely find he will not be upset as one who believes in concrete expectations and what the failing to fulfil them would be in a fear filled, egoic state. It might also be worth a call before you leave to check that he will be there yaknow in case he's gone skiing for a month or something and the place is all locked up :wink:

Our fears reside in the notions that we live our lives according to our plans and expectations... and the reality is somewhat different, don't you think?

DJ said: So, he doesn't want to say he loves you, doesn't want to see your picture, doesn't care if you visit, doesn't even want to ask himself if he cares if you visit.... sounds like something more is going on here.
DJ, respectfully, if this were you, something more would likely be going on, because of your awareness, capacity and willingness. It does not, never did, never will necessarily mean that 'something more is going on' for anyone else whose awareness, capacity and willingness is IN the experience of those things being different to your own.

Just sayin :wink:

Onceler said: I would say keep it real. Figure out what you need from a relationship and tell him the truth.
Onceler is right, if you need 'certainty' in your planning and he can no longer subscribe to that really there is only negotiation at a place where each is comfortable.

Honesty is the highest form of love, but sometimes the fantasy is preferred over the reality. In time one learns that one can play authentically & honestly in the fantasies too, one doesn't have to reject them outright - the key in aware doing is - acceptance, enjoyment, enthusiasm - not rejection of anything.

Just check when confusion arises if you mean and understand the same thing from words spoken, often we don't.
He just does not care to entertain concrete plans outside of the reality of this moment with any attachment or bestowing of expectation - is kinda my interpretation of it.

I read somewhere that relational love doesn't mean that you could not live/spend time/be happy without someone, just that you recognise and appreciate the joy when you are with them.
Our rights start deep within our humanity; they end where another's begin~~ SmileyJen
http://www.balancinginfluences.com

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dijmart
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Re: Need help

Post by dijmart » Wed Nov 27, 2013 7:16 pm

Sj,

I gave my opinion on the matter. I didn't say this is truth, listen to what I say because its gospel.

Just sayin...
Take what you like and leave the rest.

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KathleenBrugger
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Re: Need help

Post by KathleenBrugger » Wed Nov 27, 2013 8:00 pm

As usual, Smileyjen has given some excellent advice (imho). I will just add that in my experience, when people get involved in a spiritual path, they often take it to extremes at first, applying it in ways that might not be appropriate. When I first read the OP, this is what I thought jadev. Your boyfriend is learning about non-attachment and trying to always mean what he says; that resulted in things like "he didn't feel like saying "I love you" anymore because these are just words and they are superficial, got rid of our photos he had in his room."

I went through something similar with my husband years ago in the early part of our relationship. He would say something like "there's no love here" and I would find it very confusing. Maybe right there in that particular moment I wasn't feeling love, but that didn't mean I didn't love him in the romantic sense. I felt like he was being threatening, but in his mind he was saying, "let's be honest about when love is present."

I think it is very possible that there is nothing wrong (especially since you had such a great experience recently); he's just a little confused about how to communicate these new understandings. As Smileyjen said, maybe "I don't care whether you come" just means "I don't want to have any expectations." Perhaps seeing him in person will help clear all this up.
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dijmart
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Re: Need help

Post by dijmart » Wed Nov 27, 2013 11:56 pm

Oh and jen,

If it looks like a duck, acts like a duck and quacks like a duck, then usually...its a duck. Regardless of its capacity, willingness and whatever else you usually say that I don't even get the point of in the piles of paragraphs you usually write.
Take what you like and leave the rest.

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smiileyjen101
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Re: Need help

Post by smiileyjen101 » Thu Nov 28, 2013 12:45 am

I didn't meant to ruffle your duck or swan feathers DJ - it's simply that one processes things by their own filters, which is absolutely normal, natural and okay.

Confusion arises when one tries to use their own filters to understand another's words and actions when the filters are different.

What I was saying was your statement was a declaration of who you are - what it would mean if you did / said those things. Nothing right/wrong about it, just that one cannot know the filters of another, one has to ask.

That was the lesson I learned with my friend who had totally different filters and expressions of words to me.

The 'duck' was actually a swan :wink:
Our rights start deep within our humanity; they end where another's begin~~ SmileyJen
http://www.balancinginfluences.com

nutrition
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Re: Need help

Post by nutrition » Sun Dec 01, 2013 1:17 pm

there is a lot of mind in these answers,
quite simply, in a long distance relationship he might have met another woman in the town he lives in, and typically plays vague by giving all these unclear messages
If he is truly living in the moment and so enlightened he would be a rare gem. Maybe he is.
When people become very close emotionally it often happens that one of them distances himself....then he distanced himself. Most males do that after intimacy. It is quite scary to lose oneself in another.
blessing

EmberGina
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Re: Need help

Post by EmberGina » Fri Feb 14, 2014 12:31 am

Dear Jadev,

I feel how painful it was for you to hear that your boyfriend doesn’t care if you come or not, and doesn’t love you consistently. I’m sorry you’ve been experiencing it. It moved me to tears when I read your post. It’s really sad.

There are things that we legitimately need, even if we don’t demand it from each other. This is simply how we are. We are social creatures, and we are designed to give and receive love. There are requirements for a good relationship. And that is taking care of each other, and making sure that the other is well. It’s just like with a plant. It needs water. It won’t demand it from you, but if you don’t give it, it will wilt and die. If you don’t give it enough light, it will die. Similarly, if your boyfriend doesn’t give you attention, if he doesn’t care for you, you can’t be well in the relationship, and your relationship will be weak. Love, care and attention are the glue of relationship, they keep people together. Your heart needs it, and even if some people would say it is dangerous or not spiritual to need someone, and want to have a beautiful relationship, it is simply what we need as human beings.

I think I understand what your boyfriend is going through. I have seen many people going through it, and I myself went through it too. There is a certain way people tend to go about spirituality that is not good for their hearts or for their relationships, and is not really spiritual either. It is not actually spiritual to ignore other people, or kill one’s human need for others, and attachment to others. There is a right and wise way to handle the feelings that arise in us, with discernment, without becoming selfish, or small, or greedy, etc. But tossing all of them away, and becoming unemotional and detached is only deadening to our souls.

The story of your boyfriend reminds me of the time when, dissatisfied with myself and the world around me, I started spending a lot of time reading all kinds of spiritual books and trying to analyze myself and the people around me in a very distancing way. Similar to your boyfriend, I was becoming more and more detached, and more and more distant, and less and less human. I judged away a lot of my sincere emotions, a lot of sincere love for people. I stopped seeking their company. In my heart I was aching to be a part of something, but I judged away the need to belong. I moved further and further away from these very precious things that make us human, at that time. As a result I was coming through as an uncaring, insensitive person, who doesn’t want anyone, and doesn’t feel how off-putting my behavior was to others. I was interested in spirituality in a very self-centered fashion. Only later I understood that spiritual life is about others, not all about myself. And it takes coming from a place of sincere care for others and consideration of our effects on each other.

I remember distinctly that at that time of fascination with spiritual books and processes, in my insensitivity my heart was aching a lot. And I’m sure your boyfriend experiences it too. Even though your boyfriend acts in these ways, he has a heart, and he still needs the things every human being needs in order to be emotionally healthy and happy. And that means, he needs closeness, attention, love, affection, just like you, me and any other human being. These are the things he needs, even though he may be rejecting it, being on his path. As he rejects it, and pushes others away, being scared of intimacy, his soul is in pain.

You know, the things your boyfriend was saying about himself may sound like he’s trying to be honest about his feelings. But that’s not yet the honesty of his heart. If he was truly honest, he would have taken into account how it impacted you, and what he feels about THAT. Like, how does he feel about the fact that he doesn’t care if you come or not? What does he think about that? If he was to speak honestly with you about it, I am sure he is not satisfied with being so out of life, and unresponsive. How could he be? Where is the life, and love, and joy in that! We are designed to feel! Or how does he feel about the fact that he feels less and less attracted to you, and what it means to your relationship? Would he really feel good about THAT? Attraction and desire is part of what makes life beautiful -- if we handle it rightly. For a good relationship we need the honesty of that kind. With it, we can heal whatever difficulty we have created. Avoidance of the more beautiful parts of life doesn’t make us spiritual. A truly spiritual person can want someone, desire someone, enjoy healthy mutual dependence -- and STILL remain unselfish, responsible for themselves, responsible for their contribution to the relationship, NOT needy or greedy or despeare; even aware of their own soul’s ability to generate happiness. Actually, to need and want each other in a healthy way can only happen if both people int he relationship knows that they can generate happiness, that they have something to give -- because how can it be healthy to want and need someone who DOESN’T know that -- who thinks they need to suck their happiness entirely out of you.

We DO need each other, because we are social creatures. We DO need each other to be happy. AND, we need to generate happiness to be happy -- we can’t rely entirely on someone else, or else we’re shirking responsibility. All of the above is true.

Love,
Gina

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