See Differences as an Asset in Your Relationship

Two cats entwinedDo you want a relationship founded in peace and dedicated to the highest good for both of you?

Most of us do. So what goes into having that?

There are some underlying principles that are part of any truly peaceful relationship. One of the most basic is the relation of individuality and union.

Learn to recognize, honor and accept the fact that your partner is an entirely different and unique individual. They are never going to be you, nor think, say or do things exactly the way you do. These differences between you are not a threat, because they arise from the same core values. You are being offered alternative ways of seeing things, of doing things, of feeling things.

When both people recognize and accept this, a wonderful peace occurs, and the energy that might have gone into struggle is instead available for other parts of life.

That is wonderful enough in itself, but there is another aspect that is an additional source of joy, and that is the very difference of the other person. Because both you and your partner can open up without risk, you can both reveal yourselves completely. The experience of being offered another person unedited, unconcealed, is an honor.

It invites the same in return, and a mutual exploration takes place which can feel as if two souls have merged, as if for a time, you inhabit the same room. It invites you to dig deeper and deeper within yourself, finding and sharing aspects that you had lost or buried or never knew, and your partner’s revealed self adds to your world and reflects it and you emerge nourished by contact with another that is a very different experience from self-reflection.

Recognize your partner as a different and unique individual. #quote #relationships #marriage #love Click To TweetThis is one of the paradoxes in a successful relationship. Your perspective grows to include both the separateness and difference, while opening to the sublime experience of union.

For us, this has been one of the richest parts of being in a long-term relationship. As we grew to accept each other totally and trust that we would not be attacked, judged, or manipulated, a deep sense of freedom and relaxation permeated our togetherness. With this came an ability to share our feelings, thoughts and needs openly and honestly.

The extraordinary experience of truly getting to know the inner being of another has been transforming. It enriches our perspective on the possible, enhances our understanding of viewpoint and adds an unexpected depth to all interactions. The more we experience this kind of sharing, the deeper our ability to relate to each other, but also to all others, becomes.

This is something that can be done in your relationship, and it can be brought into it at any time if both parties are willing. This kind of total acceptance has to be verbally acknowledged as well as purposefully practiced. It starts with the understanding of the unique nature of your partner. Support that uniqueness. Foster its growth. Through a union based on the understanding of separateness, you can bring out each other’s best potential and help that become a reality.

We’d like to close with one of our favorite quotations on this subject:

Once the realization is accepted that even between the closest human beings infinite distances continue, a wonderful living side by side can grow, if they succeed in loving the distance between them which makes it possible for each to see the other whole against the sky. Rainer Maria Rilke

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8 comments on “See Differences as an Asset in Your Relationship
  1. iris says:

    Hi out there, this little piece brings to mind a good piece of music and all the harmonies that can be created along with the melody. As people understand the melody each of us can provide a resonance, higher octaves or deep base to the main melody, supporting the central tune and expanding its scope. As partners or individuals when we understand each other we are able to harmonize and make each note richer. I appreciate this conversation and feel we are truly working for harmony when we listen and support each idea.

  2. Jane Jacobs says:

    I’m the “mommy” of the two lovely cats on today’s blog. I sent Maude this photo a while back. I remarked to her that I loved that she and Phil used the photo for this one. I wrote:
    “It’s perfect because those two are so alike and completely different.
    Other people can’t tell them apart and we know how utterly unique
    they are, even with all the similarities.

  3. Steve Figler says:

    An important lesson or perspective, also said by Kahlil Gibran.

  4. Jinjee says:

    I love this whole post especially “sharing, the deeper our ability to relate to each other, but also to all others, becomes”. Every kind of relationship teaches us about every other kind; that with ourself, our creator, our partner, family members, community, and family of God / humankind.

    • Maude says:

      Thank you for your response, Jinjee. It is precisely for the reason you allude to (every relationship informing every other) that we believe we can bring peace to the world, one relationship at a time.
      love
      M & P

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