Understanding and Honoring Relationships by Dudley Evenson
I used to think that a certain amount of conflict in a relationship kept it exciting, but that was before I met my husband, Dean Evenson, who knows how to love and create a mutually supportive relationship. There is so much more energy for creativity in a peaceful relationship because one is not wasting vital life forces trying to fix things up, prove a point or defend one’s own turf. Obviously, one of the keys to a healthy relationship is the awareness that we are not separate from one another.
Forgiveness. There can be no winners and losers because whatever happens to you happens to me. This makes it a lot easier to forgive because I certainly want to be forgiven for my shortcomings. And to live in a relationship without judgment or criticism. This must be heaven!
Communication...open, honest, clear, loving. When we have it, there is no need for anger and hurt because we don’t have the built up reservoir of frustrations that come from not being heard or understood. In her remarkable book, Mutant Message Downunder, Marlo Morgan explains why the aboriginal people who took her on a revealing walkabout in the Australian outback were able to experience telepathic communication with each other. They had no secrets! There were no thoughts hidden in the shadows of their minds. They were at peace with everyone and everything.
Respect. It goes with the territory. If we respect each other, we will listen, try to understand and be supportive of one another’s needs. Oh, there will always be give and take, but with a loving heart and open mind, there is no problem that cannot be solved and no difference that cannot be healed. I have even come to see conflict as only “apparent conflict” because usually when we go deep enough into an issue, we can find more agreement than differences. Jesus said it simply. “Love God. Love each other.” Let us also add, “Love the Earth. Love Yourself”.
Obviously, the most formative relationships are those between parents and children. When I first became a mother, it was clear to me that my children were mirror images of me, reflecting my every mood and emotion. How important it is then for parents to be clear in their own beings or the “sins of the parents” will continue to be projected onto the children. The key is to cultivate patience and always strive to come from a place of empathy and respect for our children. Even within this powerful parent-child energy of connectedness, there is the idea of uniqueness. Our children come into this earth plane as fully formed beings. Our job is to love them for whom they really are, supporting and encouraging them in their own unfolding.
There is another aspect of the child-parent relationship. How are we doing with our own parents? Have we reconciled our feelings about them? Have we forgiven them for whatever we think they didn’t do right when they raised us? My big lesson here came many years ago when I had been involved in a decade of struggle with my own parents. I was deeply hurt by their judgments of me and my chosen lifestyle which was different from theirs. One day while pondering the pain I felt, I chanced to realize that I was judging them as much as they were judging me. I judged them for their politics, their prejudices, their materialism, even their judgments. What a release it was for me to take responsibility for the situation and accept them for what they were, to finally be able to love them without conditions. Within a few weeks, without the benefit of verbal communication on the subject but simply with a change in my own heart, we began the healing process which has continued to this day. Take heart as this is a process that can occur even after the death of one’s parents.
This lesson of forgiveness and acceptance of differences can apply to all areas of our lives. In our own business, Soundings of the Planet, when we had a large staff, we were constantly dealing with relationships, spending a lot of time to make sure people who worked with us were feeling good about themselves and each other. There will always be differences of perspective and approach, but with support and openness we can achieve balance and strive toward consensus. Our company meetings were as much about spiritual support and unity as they were about the details of running the business. We have always looked for new tools that could help our team operate from a firm foundation. The same principles of respect and clear communication that apply to any relationship are applicable in a larger community and while group process can be challenging at times, the ultimate rewards of personal growth and positive team spirit are worth it.
Nowhere is the concept of unity through diversity more profound than in the natural world. The intricate web of life is held together by complex relationships of interdependency with each part, no matter how small, contributing to the health of the whole system. Human well being ultimately depends on the well being of all the complex ecosystems of our planet. The earth doesn’t really need people since it existed long before we appeared, however, our livelihood is dependent on the healthy state of our planet which will continue to support us as long as we don’t take more from the earth than it can naturally provide. So much of our relationship with the earth has been about earth giving and us taking. In order to heal our relationship with the planet, we need to consider the concept of “giving back”. For everything we receive from the earth, we give something back, at the very least a thought or a prayer of thankfulness. Dean’s album Sacred Earth is a tribute to our prayer for a balanced relationship with nature.
Looking again at our world from a quantum physics perspective, we notice the universe is made up of infinitely small particles moving in vast regions of empty space. In fact, what we perceive as dense matter is really mostly space and energy in a constant state of flux and interconnectedness. The subtle relationship of spirit and matter is directly influenced by our consciousness. In essence, it is the spirit with which we approach our relationships that is the key. Our thoughts and feelings are the creators of our world. The quality of our consciousness determines the kind of experience we have with one another. Soundings album Prayer: A Multi-Cultural Journey of Spirit draws from the rich, diversity of prayers and chants from around the world.
Healing the disharmony in our society begins as we heal the self within. Then we are able to reach out to all the other parts of ourselves with a sense of joy and unconditional love. The fundamental principles that allow us to heal our relationships are the same at all levels. As we give support, we are supported. As we cease to judge, we are forgiven. As we give, we shall receive. As we touch one another with our healing light, we release infinite waves of creative energy. The world around us is but a reflection of our own inner being. Through our focus on the positive aspects of ourselves and others, we increase the beauty and possibility of the whole world. As we allow our purpose to unfold, we realize we are here to serve and appreciate this magnificent universe which we are helping to create.
Please visit our Soundings of the Planet Facebook page and let us know what you have found works well to keep a relationship healthy and happy!