”We are not problem to be solved but a mystery to be embraced”R M Rilke
On this Valentine’s day, here are a few ideas, practices that I want you to consider.
This year, I want you to do things differently: like, engage and step into the deeper mystery that is love in a much more mindful, wholehearted and body-centred way!
Remember, half-heartedness doesn’t reach into majesty. We must DECIDE to fully show up and engage in a richer courageous conversation that involves the whole of you this valentines – then you will generate much more literal and metaphysical warmth and love in your relationship
But here’s what I want you to do in more detail:
- 1. Have more intimate courageous conversations;
- 2. Insist on deeper, “On the left” hugs; and
- 3. Bring the mystery back in you and your relationships by stop doing what you always do [ that does’nt work ) – and mixing it up
This is what I mean by having more intimate courageous conversations: if you were to participate, jump in and affirmatively lean into an even deeper, more courageous conversation with your beloved or loved ones about the mysteries of “care” in a relationship, how to love unafraid, whole-hearted relational spirituality, intimacy/into-me-see explorations, sexuality/eros unfoldments, being each others greatest teachers about life – and do this with a warm and fierce gentleness that opens the door to awakening more of the mystery of what relationship, the WE, really means to you and your partner.
Yes, if we are lucky enough to have partners, wives, husbands, spouses, lovers – or a special friend, a pet, your favourite tree or a beloved muse – we all have curious compelling need for participating in deeper and richer communications. The Valentine gifts of a fabulous dinner, flowers, a romantic trip, or chocolates will then be a bonus. These “Gifts” are all scrumptious but this is what I want you to bring to your Valentine this year: more warm, open-hearted, curious, and mind-not-made-up conversations that open space on the topics that have everything to do with relationships: care, loving unafraid, whole-hearted relationships, intimacy/into-me-see, sexuality/eros, being each others teacher, to name but a few
Then I want you to upgrade and bring your ability to hug to another level – by hugging deeply and “on the left”. Let me explain. The last I checked, we all have our heart’s on the left side of our torso’s, so I need you to hug your partner more on his/her left side too so both of your hearts are literally more geographically connected and intimate.
This will be a difference-maker this year, and not just at Valentines.
Why? Because modern neuroscience bares out what we intuitively know to be true: a deep, “on the left” hug helps the relationship itself – the WE – co-regulate the two individuals into calmer and more awakened WE states, making possible more care, intimacy and love in the relationship. At Valentines, we are, as Rilke suggests, especially “not a problem to be solved and much more about the mystery to be embraced.” And so the hugs “on the left” are an invitation to bring a little more into-me-see warmth to the WE.
Now let’s open up some more space around the fact that we are all Mysteries to be embraced. To be seen, heard, embraced by this Mystery we call love is what most of us really want on Valentine’s. This is full acknowledgement and the basis of all thriving relationships. By being willing to quietly acknowledge, attend to, appreciate, accept ( perhaps even be silent, not know, awkward, wrong, to fail well ) can provide a heartfelt opening that invites a deeper embrace for and from our beloveds – be that a literal person or metaphorically a muse, piece of art, ancestors, or the wisdom from your sacred books, music, paintings.
For instance, not long ago, we ended up innocently wading into talking about and having a courageous conversation about the “emotional labor” of woman are usually ladened with – verses the physical or mental labor of men – and how woman tend to be trained up an emotional and relational labor at home with children, household chores, kitty litter, getting Johnny play dates. And men have been mostly trained to engage in the outside world of mental and physical labour of making money, working in the fields, and focuses of being externally successful, leading. We insisted on the men and women ( we were a small group having dinner ) not “split” into polar, gender and different camps but keep a local but global perspective and engagement open and generative.
This kind of courageous conversation was a real challenge. The typical, science-backed, media-generated polarity on this potentially contentious topic with a rigorous and fresh engagement – and the dialogue was generative, creative and warm hearted. We all learned a lot, became more aware of the grey areas of this whole topic, while recognizing that we were really just starting a courageous discussion on a very complex and intimate challenge that our modern world was now facing as we bust down classic gender roles and expectations
But here’s your challenge for 2019: if you make these these 3 engagements – more intimate courageous conversations, deeper “On the left” hugs, and bring the mystery back in your relationships by stop doing what you always do [ and that does’nt work ) and mixing it up – a year long practice, by the time Valentine’s comes around next year, of course you’re relationship is going to be in great shape