Quintessence of Tantra: "The sacred couple is two people who are really good together.” (Giorgia Sitta).
Versione italiana al link: La coppia è anche gioco e gioia
For years now I have been performing horrible experiments on myself and on the poor souls who unluckily venture with me into a relationship; for years I have been reflecting on the successful or unsuccessful experiences of relatives, friends and counselling clients. All this mental, emotional and spiritual torment is leading me to the shocking and always debatable conclusion that we should be happy as a couple.
The relationship attracts us, and it is one of the most instructive testing grounds for the human being... however, if the relationship diminishes the quality of our life, is it worth it? When a person has learnt to feel really good alone, the temptation to stay that way is very strong. Fortunately, not many beings have gone that far, otherwise the human race would have been extinct long ago and, considering everything, I don't know if it would have been much better for planet Earth
I really think that, as a couple, we should enjoy ourselves on all levels, from the sexual to the spiritual, without aspiring to perfection but also without having to be 'satisfied'. When I 'settle', I unconsciously declare that I do not deserve the best in life, which is actually the birthright of every living being. Existence is complex and painful enough on its own, let alone adding the odd guilt trip whereby we don't consider ourselves worthy of being happy and have to make do with a second-rate relationship.
Some of my partners have been real teachers for me: they have rarely burdened me with their old stories, their childhood traumas or their unresolved past. They have taught me how much healthier it is to deal with our own wounds, perhaps with appropriate support, and then to put the knowledge gained into practice in the present relationship.
So, if we realise that we have wrong attitudes or our partner points them out to us, we can take note and begin to concretely and courageously apply the opposite behaviour. Of course, at first it will seem like moving a mountain. Let's imagine a person who is not used to talking about his or her feelings and who, because of this communication defect, has ruined potentially beautiful relationships: for him or her, even just being able to say 'I love you, I missed you today, I want to be with you' could be a titanic task. Or let's take an aggressive person, predisposed to attack and arrogance: it will be already a lot if, three times out of ten, he/she bites his/her tongue and apologizes.
Apart from these adjustments, which are highly evolutionary for both partners, the couple should still be joy and laughter, hugs and kisses, shared experiences and difficulties overcome together. It can become an excellent playground for learning to take the first step in demonstrating love, for training oneself to discover something new and beautiful in one's partner and to communicate it to him or her; we can learn never to take anything for granted and exercise, instead, the virtue of attention, which is the fundamental nourishment for making everything we love grow.