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It's Important to Know That All Relationships Matter

People at dinnerOne reader’s comment to our blog recently was “Every relationship matters.” This is really what it all comes down to. There is an important link between our relationship with ourselves, our relationship with our partner, and our relationships to all others.

There is also great power to affect the world through the actions we share with our partners and intimate relationships. Maude had a conversation with a friend who was recounting a couple she knows that are so loving with each other that she said of them “They are an incredible couple and it rubs off on everyone around them!”

We often speak of couples relationships and how you can live in true peace and love within these relationships. At the core of that experience is how this can change not only your own experience but the world we live in. We can spread peace one relationship at a time by being living examples of what peace is, and how it is shared through relationships.

Learning to honor and respect the individuality of our partners and intimates teaches us to understand that we can celebrate difference, that it enriches our experiences and does not threaten or diminish us. In the greater context of society, this is expressed in an understanding of our commonality rather than our difference. Peace blossoms from the acceptance of the balance between the individual and the society, and this comes from the understanding that society is nothing more nor less than a collection of relationships with known and unknown persons. This balance arises from our mutual connection, from the deepest understanding that we are all related, and that the actions of the one, affect the whole.

Western culture has a strong focus on the individual, and nowhere more so than in America. We end up seeing ourselves as separate, and hence alone, and hence lonely. The cure for that is connection, and it is much easier to let that happen when you admit the idea we are also all connected. Yes, also, because both things are true at once. We are uncomfortable holding these two contradictory positions because the mind wants to fit everything into separate boxes, but we are inextricably connectedto our family by DNA; to each other by sharing, caring and working together; and to the world with every breath, taking oxygen and giving carbon dioxide.

Think of these as the answers to two different questions: who are we and what are we. Think also of these as two different ways of looking: do you see differences or do you see similarities? Both exist, but relationships are about what you have in common. When you start seeing people, whether your partner or a stranger, in those terms, then you can be a part of healing the divisions in the world.

As you work on your known relationships and become more and more conscious of living in love and peace, you become, in a very real sense, an agent for peace in the world.

“You think you are working on yourself and your relationship, and indeed you are. But there is another unexpected component that arises from this work. Practicing peace in your relationship has results that affect more than just the two of you. Firstly, it influences other people by example. Secondly, you start treating others the same way. It ripples out into the world and, by showing what is possible, inspires people to be their best. The direct experience of peace, and the calm yet ecstatic sense of joy and love that arise from this state, is catching and very powerful. Let’s go forth and change the world!” How Two: Have a Successful Relationship

So we ask you to join us in practicing peace in your relationships. Every relationship matters!

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Successful Relationship Reading Corner

BookshelfThis week, we wrote that it's important to know that all relationships matter. Here are some articles to different aspects of that topic.

How to Live in Peace WikiHow is a collaborative site like wikipedia that, despite its appearance, often has very good peer-reviewed articles. "Living in peace is about living harmoniously with yourself, others, and all sentient beings around you. While you will find your own meanings of peaceful existence and outward manifestations of a peaceful life according to your beliefs and lifestyle, there are some basics underpinning living in peace that cannot be overlooked, such as being non-violent, being tolerant, holding moderate views, and celebrating wondrous-life."

The Power of Influence "Control over our lives is something we all want. But in a universe in which everything is mutually interdependent, none of us has absolute control over anything including, much of the time, ourselves. Rather, what we all have in abundance is influence, the power of which seems to function linearly: the closer personally and physically others are to us, the greater our influence over them, and vice versa."

5 Easy Ways You Can Create World Peace "[W]hy should the noise from some misguided souls get to determine your worldview? The time has come for the rest of us—who are committed to creating a peaceful world—to make some noise. The message of non-violence can be lived and demonstrated through our presence and actions. It’s easy for the mind to get fixated on negative news; but in reality acts of love, kindness and generosity far exceed acts borne of misunderstanding and distrust."


Spreading peace one relationship at a time
Phil and Maude
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