"Words are tears that have been written down. Tears are words that need to be shed. Without them, joy loses all its brilliance and sadness has no end."

tiistai 28. helmikuuta 2012

On relationships

Tämä teksti on poikkeuksellisesti englanniksi, koska sillä kielellä se ulos pullahti kiireisellä käsialalla töissä post-it-lapuille.


"Let the right one in
let the old dreams die

let the right one slip in"


Romantic relationships (I'll use this term as to separate what I'm referring to from the more platonic types of relationships) are not just about being loving and being loved. They are much more than that, and once you realize their full potential there is no going back. I'm not saying there's anything wrong with simply enjoying each other's company - that's one good way of making life more bearable or even fulfilling - but I can't have a simple feelgood-relationship anymore. It would feel empty; it would not be enough.

"The full potential of a relationship" is a god damn scary concept in all its fearsome power. I've pondered upon this every time I've pulled "The Sun" out of my tarot deck. It represents this exact concept and compares its energy to that of the Sun. That star over there, right next to us, burning, exploding, consuming, giving; a dynamo of elements. If a relationship can be as powerful as the Sun, it is hereby compared to the most powerful thing the humankind has ever witnessed during its existence. Fire is a mighty element, and the kind of relationship I want to have would be an embodiment of its nature.

I guess all this might be scary for some people, maybe even most of them. That's probably why I haven't been dating in a while.

But what is that "more" a relationship can be, you might ask. Not to separate myself from other people, but it's something most people never stop to think about or might not even be able to conceive, even if they were lucky enough to live it. The concept is very abstract and hard for me to put into words, but let me have a try.

Not long ago I heard a speech by an old Indian man by the name Osho. He discussed the nature of relationships and love and presented this comparison: we are all Beggars begging form each other. None of us can love each other for we have never loved ourselves; thus all relationships with us "loving" while we know nothing of love will end up with two Beggars thinking the other one is an Emperor from whom they can beg. One will think of himself as a Beggar and the other one as an Emperor, the other one will do the same, and they will end up feeling cheated. "This Beggar pretended to be an Emperor!" while he himself rose the other one to such a noble height.

In practice this might manifest as a constant need of attention or nurturing, as a demand for the other one to keep on giving or even as a complete refusal to lead one's own life, in the end resulting with the other one wearing out as they always give and never receive. All the other one wanted was to be the Beggar riding in the Emperor's back, taking it easy, but he ended up being the Emperor and taking another independent human being as their responsibility. No one should have to be the only Emperor in a relationship.

But this is where I asked a question: what if they were both Emperors?

I have lived through both roles in my relationships and don't want to go back there, for it's both unfair and fruitless; a useless merry-go-round of statuses. That's why, once I bumped into this emperor analogy, I feel like I've finally found words to describe what I've felt every time I've had to turn down a dating proposal. What is an emperor? A self-confident ruler of his empire: himself. An emperor knows his value, will not settle; knows what he wants and needs and demands for it. But no emperor, no matter how grand, can fully perceive himself, no matter how well-trained in self-reflection. That's where we need two of them to mirror each other. If one emperor can make a kingdom flourish, can you imagine what a pair of them could do? (Not to mention a whole 6 billion of them, but that's another subject. We ain't there yet.) To have someone you value as your worthy be your mirror, the surface you reflect upon, would be the brightest of them all, and there would be no dependence, no demanding, as they would both have their own kingdoms where they're doing just fine.

How do we become emperors, then? I'm not one to give lessons on this, as I'm not (yet) a wise Indian man, but how I started years ago was by learning to love myself. "To be selfish is to be yourself." It might come as a shock, but relationships do not exist so you could give everything to others. They exist so you could receive. One should always enter a relationship considering primarily oneself, but not in a way that's full of self. Also try to envision yourself in an ideal relationship: what would you get? What would you want? What would you like to be able to give? The people who fit those visions will find you.


Youtube link to Osho's speech on being in love: http://youtu.be/8LfUvi1bof8

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