Spiritual Partnership

The existing paradigm and institutions around marriage are collapsing. Currently, approximate one half of all marriages end in divorce, with a great many of those who do remain committed in their marriages living lives of silent desperation. We are desperately in need of a new paradigm for intimate relationship. Gary Zukav, author of the best-selling “The Seat of the Soul” suggests that this new paradigm is “spiritual partnership.”

If you would like to have a spiritual partner in your life, all that you need to do is clarify the type of partner you would like to attract into your life, including the attributes that this individual would embody that are congruent with your own spiritual path. The challenge here may be that you may not currently be able to clearly articulate what exactly your spiritual path is. If the path that you are on is in practicing in one of the world’s major religions (Christianity, Islam, Judaism, Buddhism, and Hinduism), this should be very simple for you. But, if these particular spiritual paths do not resonate with you, you may need some clarification of exactly what your spirituality is.

From my perspective, spirituality consists of two primary components: cosmology and ethos. Cosmology is simply the prevailing worldview that you hold of this Universe and all of the forces in it (God, heaven, hell, angels, an eternal soul, extraterrestrial life, reincarnation, other dimension, black holes, etc.). An ethos is your sense of how you as a human being should conduct your behavior, as well as the ritual practices that assist you in evolving towards the ultimate aim implied in your cosmology.

I believe this definition of spirituality to be broad and all-encompassing of the diversity of approaches we as human beings have to living our lives. In this definition, every life is a spiritual life, as we all have a prevailing worldview and sense of the most appropriate way to conduct our lives in accordance with our worldview. Even the avowed atheist that has rejected all notions of God and organized religion has some conception of this Universe, and the most appropriate way to orient himself in relationship to this Universe. One form of spirituality on this planet is what I will term “party spirituality”. The prevailing cosmology here may include such beliefs as “life is short,” or “you only live life once”, and so you may as well have as much fun as possible while you are here. This worldview presupposes that certain “cosmic possibilities” are irrelevant (reincarnation, cause and effect, etc.). These  ritual practices tend to involve mind-altering substances such as alcohol, psychedelic, and psychotropic drugs. The “temple” at which such people would congregate for their rituals would be a nightclub or perhaps a warehouse. Therefore, if this type of person with this form of spirituality were seeking a spiritual partner, it would be most appropriate for them to seek someone that they could share their “party spirituality” with. That is, someone they could go to temple with. So it is with all of us.

Another important consideration here is the ultimate ideal to which humans must aspire according to the cosmology that they adhere to. For Christians, that ideal is heaven; for Hindus it is moksha (liberation); for Buddhists it is nirvana (enlightenment); for adherents to the drug culture it may be a unitive experience; and so on. This ultimate ideal to which we are aspiring to according to our worldview, must then be a significant consideration in our choice of a partner.

If one person has one ideal destination, and the other has another destination in mind, obviously there will be a problem.  How can two people be in a relationship when one person wants to travel North, and the other South? It is, therefore, imperative that each individual be headed in the same ultimate direction if they are to support each other in getting there. Thus, my assertion that two people involved in an intimate relationship be able to go to “temple” together, as temples are simply the vehicles by which a group of people attempt to arrive at a desired destination. It does not matter if that temple is a mosque, church, synagogue, nightclub, chemistry lab, etc. The point is that having decided the ultimate destination at which you would like to arrive, it would be wise to join someone that is headed there, as well. In short, your spiritual partner should be someone that you can go to temple with (whether that temple is formal or informal), in an effort for the both of you to conduct your lives in the way that is most appropriate for you to both reach your ultimate goal implied in your worldview.

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