The “surface” and sometimes superficial purposes for being in intimate relationships vary from couple to couple. Some people hate to be alone. Some are in relationships for reasons such as wanting to start a family, to feel in love or be in love, to have access to monogamous sex, or to fulfill religious or familial obligations.
If we were just instinctual creatures without free will and without a sense of self, four of the reasons for wanting to pair with another would be ensuring safety, reproducing, experiencing companionship, and raising offspring effectively through teamwork. Anthropologists knowledgeable of behaviors of instinctual and highly intelligent creatures would likely add other things to that list.
As humans we have unparalleled intelligence and mental capacity, but we often do extraordinarily stupid things. Yet when our intelligence is combined with our free will we can act upon higher reason than pure animal survival provided that we carefully develop a higher sense of self.
We need to be aware that there are higher reasons to experience relationships than procreation—development of higher consciousness is one of them. Life would seem random or pointless were it not for the three entities of awareness, thinking beings, and consciousness. Perhaps nature planned those three things all along and changed them over billions of years. But nature certainly seems to have desired thinking, free-willed minds to be capable of achieving and advancing toward whatever the natural world is evolving to become.
This book focuses on intimate relationships. Such relationships begin in childhood. Since that's the case, we must realize that our relationships, like things that we think, are manipulated by our childhood experiences.
With this in mind, we should view our relationships as theatrical productions that are created by our subconscious minds. We create the stage, the backgrounds, and the props. We create the actors and the cast, and we create the story and all of the dialogues. We create it in our minds and then piece by piece put it together subconsciously in the real world as close to that vision created in the mind as we can.
Once we first experience a relationship it may seem completely random and new. Slowly over time, though, the vision that's driven by our childhood experiences begins to unfold into our new reality. It puts us back into a childhood state. When that happens, we're essentially opening up the wormhole into our subconscious mind, where there's no past and no future but just a state of timeless floating inside the walls of our body space.
In a relationship, many unresolved mental blocks, insecurities, hidden fears, compulsions, resentments, humiliations, character defects, and psychological stages (e.g., the “attachment stage” and “competence stage”) may come to the surface. Such things cause psychological pain, and the subconscious mind believes that it can fix such pain. One of the ways it does so is by attempting to relive blissful and sublime experiences (particularly from childhood and youth).
Relationships should be practiced as emotional workshops. Relationships as entities can serve therapeutic purposes. They can help repair the psyche. For ancient people, relationships served somewhat different purposes. They were primarily for a continuation of love from childhood into adulthood; a continuation of union with the universe and to love and union with others.
Sex creates deep bonds. Sex and physical union are not required to create such bonds, but they often do. The physical aspects of sex are oftentimes internalized. We take into our psyche what we experience from our physical senses. Sex is a multi-dimensional experience; we awaken all the energies in our body and experience things related to our emotions, our five senses, and our subconscious when we engage in it.
A relationship, with or without checks, is a therapeutic experience. When it functions properly, it benefits us tremendously. When it's dysfunctional, it causes us harm and injury and causes us to have false perceptions about life, happiness, and the nature of reality.
Abusive relationships are particularly destructive to our psyche. They must be nipped in the bud so that they do not force us into harmful addictive behaviors. We will often be stuck in toxic relationships because of fear of not being alone and fear not having our needs met. That fear can manifest itself both consciously and subconsciously.
We may be in a relationship in which we're very much interested in healing and growth while our partner is not. When that's the case, we’ll feel anxious and abandoned and find it difficult to keep calm. A relationship should be seen as a profit sharing collaborative, and as such both partners should be invested in each other’s happiness.
Relationships should also be seen as opportunities to elevate consciousness higher and higher. That's very difficult to do during life's infinite daily distractions. When we are on a path toward self-improvement, even good things such as taking care of errands, making appointments, and dealing with traffic can become distracting annoyances. And if we don't have the right attitudes in such situations, it's no exaggeration to say that they can drive us to madness.
One of the most beautiful things about relationships is that they provide us with a partner who can help move us away from such distractions towards the higher consciousness that I speak of. In a relationship, we essentially participate with another in a covenant to become the best that we can be both for ourselves and for each other.
If you're in a relationship, cherish it. Nourish it, work hard on it, examine it closely, and pour all the love into it that you can. If you do so, you and your partner will both benefit tremendously, and if you have difficulties, it’s likely that you will be able to work them out. You can move each other away from negativity and distraction and towards good mental and psychological health and higher consciousness.