romantic love

Talk about relationships in the context of Spiritual Enlightenment

romantic love

Postby 11magneto » Sun Feb 07, 2010 1:52 pm

Hi

can anyone tell me which oprah-tolle web cast contains the mention or discussion of romantic love and the damage it does to society?
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Re: romantic love

Postby the key master » Sun Feb 07, 2010 8:23 pm

Not sure on the web-cast. But, for the sake of discussion, I would say that it is the mind's interpretation of the experience of romantic love as a separate self which actually damages society. So if we are going to blame the experience of romance, or any experience for that matter, we may as well blame the illusion of the false self. It is at the root.

I actually think the experience of romantic love is one of the purest human experiences, a potential gateway to the Self. I would concur that the tendency to identify with such experiences, to identify other human beings with our thoughts about them from such experiences, creates many pitfalls for the egoic mind, which in turn trickles over into the collective. In Buddhism they would call it part of samsara, one spoke on the wheel of the pain/pleasure cycle of the false self. It is the tendency to hold on, to be attached as a separate self, to our thoughts about experiences and people, which causes our own tendency to suffer, which is really all we can take responsibility for. True societal change will start with the individual and flow outward.

Just my two pennies, a topic I find very interesting.

-J
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Re: romantic love

Postby 11magneto » Mon Feb 08, 2010 5:04 am

thanks for this.

i was trying to think about this in terms of relationships and loving someone. when you do fall for someone, you have the natural tendancy to want to see them all the time, spend time with them, be intimate with them, etc.. but is that bad? is the false self and the egoic mind wanting to invest and embrace the other person, or is the action one of the purest experiences (as you say) - a potential gateway to ones self? the experience of falling in love and being present with one's self seem like two opposing forces.
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Re: romantic love

Postby the key master » Mon Feb 08, 2010 6:35 pm

Magneto said,

when you do fall for someone, you have the natural tendancy to want to see them all the time, spend time with them, be intimate with them, etc.. but is that bad?


We have to ask, what actually happens when you fall for someone. And so we have to go back to the experience of the moment itself, where two human beings come together, and there is something unique there. Something that makes the mind say yes I love this person. There is a connection, not only with this other person but with the moment itself, and this connection can only be felt and experienced when there is no demand on the moment, no argument with reality. And so experiences unfold within the presence of another human, and these experiences feel so pure, so right. Its more than physical attraction, its more than lust/sex, something deeper which on the level of soul is recognized as natural, there is an absence of self, an absence of self-concern, an absence of the movement of mind yearning for or running from some other experience. Hence I call the romantic experience a potential gateway to the Self, as the unawakened mind can see that true love does not stem from an "I" loving an "other", but from an experience which itself is absent of the false self.

But the mind, so used to "thinking" of itself as a separate person, reflects and projects, fragments the experience of love into the "thought" of loving another person. The mind also intuitively believes this other person caused the experience of no self, and thus is needed to recreate it. When we get attached, we are really getting attached to our thoughts of another human, an image. When dealing with attachment issues, its important to realize the mind has created the attachment to its own thoughts, not the human being. No human, no experience, is needed by the Self. The Self is That Within Which Experiences Arise.

I do feel that seeing and understanding the dynamic between experience and thinking about such experience is HUGE. That said, attachment is not something one can simply inquire away, God knows Ive tried. It can be suffered away, however. Yet, we must be willing to experience our attachments fully. Be willing to be hurt. Be willing to have your heart broken a thousand times over, you'll be no worse for the wear. It is the fear of a broken heart which leads to issues like control, jealousy, and all that love is not. So within the romantic experience exists a huge opportunity to learn how one's own mind fragments experience through thinking, fragments other human beings into thoughts, disconnects from the moment through a story of separate self. I believe Gangaji states something like, by living in fear of a broken heart, you live in a state of brokenheartedness. Thats always stuck with me.

Its ok to want to spend time with certain individuals and share experiences with certain people. Are these desires personal, of the false self, sure. If these desires are causing suffering for yourself, or suffering for someone else, then something is not being accepted, there is some personal control being exerted on life, and when this happens, you are at the mercy of life, and a student of love. Be willing to learn what you are not during those times, that life doesnt have to be any certain way for you to be at peace, and you are well on your way to whereever life may be taking you. Its that desire to take life somewhere which causes life to turn the tables on us. Its obvious when you look at it, quite another thing when youre an emotionally vested participant in it.

the experience of falling in love and being present with one's self seem like two opposing forces.


Quite right. Presence, the Self, has nothing to do with a separate self falling in love. That is merely part of the illusion of the false self. So yes the experience of falling in love contains many learning opportunities for the egoic mind. But for every land mine we step in, the false self loses a limb. Stay learning and you cannot possibly go wrong. Cultivate a faith in love as you would in life. Know that everything that happens in life and love is exactly what you need for this step on your journey, and be willing and ready to jump any hurdles life puts in front of you. What else can you do?
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Re: romantic love

Postby Sighclone » Tue Feb 09, 2010 8:28 am

Here is a very old Adya comment on relationships:

The Heart of Relationship
Awakening to the truth of perfect Unity, means to awaken from the dream of a personal self and personal others to the realization that there is no other. Many spiritual seekers have had glimpses of the absolute unity of all existence, but few are capable of or willing to live up to the many challenging implications inherent in that revelation. The revelation of perfect unity, that there is no other, is a realization of the ultimate impersonality of all that seems to be so very personal. Applying this realization to the arena of personal relationships is something that most seekers find extremely challenging, and is the number one reason why so many seekers never come completely to rest in the freedom of the Self Absolute. Inherent in the revelation of perfect unity is the realization that there is no personal me, no personal other, and therefore no personal relationships. Coming to terms with the challenging implications of this stunning realization is something that few people are willing to do. Because realizing the true impersonality of all that seems so personal, challenges every aspect of the illusion of a separate, personal self. It challenges the entire structure of personal relationships which are born of needs, wants, and expectations. It is in the arena of personal relationships that the illusion of a separate self clings most tenaciously and insidiously. Indeed, there is nothing that derails more spiritual seekers than the grasping at and attaching to personal relationships.

The revelation of perfect unity reveals the true impersonality of all relationships. The ego always interprets “impersonal” as meaning cold, distant, and aloof. However, “impersonal” simply means not personal, or void of a separate me and a separate you. The mind cannot comprehend of a relationship without separate entities. Much as a character in a dream cannot comprehend that all other dream characters are simply manifestations of the same dreamer. Yet when the dreamer awakens, he instantly comprehends that the entire dream, and all the characters in it, were none other than projections of his own self. In the dream there is the appearance of separate, personal entities in relationship, but upon awakening one comprehends the impersonal (non-separate) Self that is the source of all appearances.

To deeply inquire into the question “Who is another?” can lead to the direct experience that the other is one’s own Self - that in fact there is no other. However, I have seen that for most seekers, even this direct experiential revelation is not enough to transform the painfully personal ways they relate. To come to this profound transformation requires a very deep investigation into the implications inherent within the experiential revelation that there is no other. It is in the daily living of these implications that most seekers fail. Why? Because, fundamentally, most people want to remain separate and in control. Simply put, most people want to keep dreaming that they are special, unique, and separate, more than they want to wake up to the perfect unity of an Unknown which leaves no room from any separation from the whole.

There is a powerful tendency in most spiritual seekers to avoid probing deeply into the implications inherent within profound spiritual experience and revelation, because these implications are always threatening to the sense of a separate self, or ego. It is the implications inherent within profound spiritual revelation that demand the transformation of the apparent individual.

Inherent within the revelation of perfect unity is the realization that there is no other. The implications of this realization reveal that in order to manifest that unity in the relative world, one must renounce the dream of being a separate self seeking to obtain anything through relationship with another. Indeed, personal relationship appears to happen in the relative world, but in reality, all appearances simply arise as temporary manifestations of a unified whole. In the relative world these appearances are in relationship, but not as separate entities. Rather, they are the play of the one Self projecting itself as apparent entities in relationship to one another.

As long as you identify yourself with the projection of separateness, you will continue to deny that you are the Source of all projections. When you truly and absolutely awaken to this fact, and comprehend the overwhelming implications inherent within this awakening, you will continually experience that all apparently personal relationships are in truth nothing other than the play of your Self. To realize that the personal me is an illusion born of false identification with the body, thoughts, and emotions, brings a profound sense of freedom. This is fundamentally the realization of emptiness, of what you are not. But contained within the realization of emptiness (formlessness) is also the realization of what you ARE. In the most absolute sense you ARE this conscious emptiness which is the source of all appearances (existence). But you are the appearance as well. Not just one part of the appearance called “me”, but all of it , the entire whole. This is the challenge, to let your view get this vast. To let your view get so vast that your identity disappears. Then you realize that there is no other, and there is nothing personal going on.

Contrary to the way the ego will view such a realization, it is in reality the birth of true love. A love which is free of all boundaries and fear. To the ego such uncontaminated love is unbearable in its intimacy. When there is no clear separating boundaries and nothing to gain the ego becomes disinterested, angry, or frightened. In a love where there is no other there is nowhere to hide, no one to control, and nothing to gain. It is the coming together of appearances in the beautiful dance of the SELF called Love.

To the seeker who is sincere, an experiential glimpse of this possibility is not enough. If you are sincere you will find it within yourself to go far beyond any glimpse. You will find within your Self the courage to let go of the known and dive deeply into the Unknown heart of a mystery that calls you only to itself.

Adyashanti, posted to AdyashantiSatsang by Bob O’Hearn

From NDHighlights Digest Number 1475
A person is not a thing or a process, but an opening through which the universe manifests. - Martin Heidegger
There is not past, no future; everything flows in an eternal present. - James Joyce
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Re: romantic love

Postby the key master » Tue Feb 09, 2010 4:13 pm

Good stuff SC.

Adya said,

The revelation of perfect unity, that there is no other, is a realization of the ultimate impersonality of all that seems to be so very personal.


Yes that word impersonal seems so threatening. Its really quite the opposite.

I find the true challenge comes from utilizing the dimension of thought within personal relationships. A good question to ask oneself: Is love guiding and empowering my thought? Or am I trying to guide or own love?

Utilizing the dimension of thought in personal relationships is tricky. I feel forming emotional attachments to certain people is actually natural. Im yet to come across a teaching that states Self realization is the end of human emotion. But once we gain an understanding of how the false, or perhaps more appropriately illusory, self causes certain emotions, expressing these emotions in a constructive and loving way, in fidelity to Truth as Adya might say, becomes a living reality. Its really about seeing the dimension of thought within the Self as the Self.

Within dreams however, the duality and play of the masculine/feminine energies on the level of soul runs a little deeper than it may appear. For some, the birth of the individual soul actually stems from a masculine/feminine relationship, and as such, on the level of soul, a natural yearning for this counterpart exists. Such a soul will never be truly whole until the reunion. The soul must be made ripe however, for this reunion to occur, which may not even happen in this world or this life. I dont want to go off on a mystical tangent, and certainly dont want to leave anyone with the idea that they need another to be whole. If you believe you need another to be whole you will never be whole. When that belief has been washed away, the final reunion is near...
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Re: romantic love

Postby hermitwin » Thu Feb 11, 2010 4:15 am

romantic or parental love, usually its conditional/selfish love with attachment.
we should love all living things/human beings.
yes, one can be self sufficient. no we dont really need a partner.
if you had a partner and you lost her, would you be just as happy?
its called attachment. eg people whose children die sink into
deep depression bcos they cant accept it.
tolle said that if he could not have sex or wine or good food from now on, he would be just as happy. he is not attached to anything.
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Re: romantic love

Postby kiki » Thu Feb 11, 2010 4:23 am

Hermitwin - I sent you a PM. Did you read it?
"Miss Kelly, perhaps you'd like this flower. I seem to have misplaced my buttonhole ... Miss Kelly, you know, when you wear my flower you make it look beautiful." Elwood P. Dowd
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Re: romantic love

Postby thenow » Sat Feb 13, 2010 7:26 pm

When I first submerged in all these wonderful feelings, I found it to be very similar to romantic love, except that there doesn't seem to be a target or cause. The feeling stay with me whereever I go. Everything I do is just a part of the whole experience. I was a bit puzzled first--why am I in love of myself and things around me?

I can still find others to be attracted, however, the feeling is no longer a need to control. You see him from your point of view and his point of view and you realize that attraction is just your ego and mind searching some drama and role to play. In fact, you have everything you want. You are not lacking, not unless you crave for that up and down drama and role play.

In that calm and state of not-lacking, you really are surrounded by romantic love already and there is no need to experience it by depending on another person.

Hope this makes sense
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Re: romantic love

Postby sunnyjo » Sat Feb 13, 2010 8:46 pm

Hi thenow

That makes perfect sense to me. Feeling love most of today. Nope nothing/no-one needed when you feel this :)

Love, love, love
"We are the mirror, as well as the face in it"

Rumi
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Re: romantic love

Postby hermitwin » Mon Feb 15, 2010 4:00 am

our culture , which is a creation of our mind, tells us that romantic love
is wonderful, beautiful. as tolle says, it ends with they live happily ever after.
romantic love is no different from other kinds of love. its based on what can i
get out of it. unconditional love is different, its the recognition that to love everyone is to accept everyone. romantic love is way over-rated. but to dismantle this idea would be quite impossible under present circumstances.
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Re: romantic love

Postby thenow » Mon Feb 15, 2010 4:35 am

hermitwin wrote:our culture , which is a creation of our mind, tells us that romantic love
is wonderful, beautiful. as tolle says, it ends with they live happily ever after.
romantic love is no different from other kinds of love. its based on what can i
get out of it. unconditional love is different, its the recognition that to love everyone is to accept everyone. romantic love is way over-rated. but to dismantle this idea would be quite impossible under present circumstances.



Yes, I was going to add this aspect as well--the love that you feel is all surrounding. And I should say, it is unconditional also.

If the definition of romantic love involves conditions, which yes, of course, then that would not be what I am trying to describe, although the bliss and joy feels similar.

The unconditional aspect is another factor that makes it so commpassionate and true. You cannot be easily be swayed by circumstances.
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Re: romantic love

Postby Emma » Sun May 09, 2010 5:02 pm

Thanks all of you for this interesting discussion on romatic love, which is one of my dearest topics.
I just realized that stepping on landmines is one of my favourite sports.

I would like to add another view on "romantic love" which I consider to be complementary to what has been said. Sometimes after reading wonderful books such as ET we start thinking we are finally a bit more enlightened and start to feel connected to everything what is. At that point we start feeling love as unconditional and pure. We are finally connected to the whole and emptyness feels less empty. However, it is relatively easy to remain calm and to connect to the whole while we are doing meditation at home or looking at awesome landscapes...

"Romantic love" is a moment of truth. Many times while I thougth I was "connected" and alert and I had finally found some serenity in my life, then suddenly "romantic love" made its appereance. It is much more difficult to remain conscious and alert while we are under the grip of romantic love. It is much more difficult to avoid feeling empty in the absence of the one you love. You can deal with attachment to things, but it is much more difficult to deal with attachement while in a "romantic love" situation. So "romantic love" is perhaps to be considered a challenge to refine our awareness and to humble ourselves.

Everytime we feel we are enlightened, we require an episode of "romantic love" (or something similar) to remind us we are still humans and how difficult is love without attachement in practise.
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Re: romantic love

Postby Sighclone » Sun May 09, 2010 7:52 pm

Welcome, Emma!

I agree that romantic love is a challenge. If we don't confuse it with the much deeper reality of pure awareness, it's a little easier. Romantic love can change, we know that. Self does not, and "in" or "out" of romantic love with a person, we know both of us are ultimately Sourcebeams. Two wives, and one long-term girlfriend later, I can still love them as people and also as manifestations of the beauty and unity of Being. As is my current dear wife. As are you.

Andy
A person is not a thing or a process, but an opening through which the universe manifests. - Martin Heidegger
There is not past, no future; everything flows in an eternal present. - James Joyce
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Re: romantic love

Postby Tommes » Tue May 11, 2010 10:31 pm

Sighclone wrote:Welcome, Emma!

I agree that romantic love is a challenge. If we don't confuse it with the much deeper reality of pure awareness, it's a little easier. Romantic love can change, we know that.



If romantic love can change, what is romantic love then? Is it still something based upon the ego? I you are aware, you are in love with everything. Some people can reflect your love 'better' back then others, and thats why you prefer them. But how can the reflecting love change?
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