by Robert Najemy
a. Clarify Values, Needs, Life Style:
The more mature we are when we enter a relationship, the more likely
we are to succeed in finding the harmony we desire. In general, we
attract persons who correspond to our present stage of interests,
motives, values, goals, etc. This occurs through the attraction of similar
or opposites. As we ourselves mature and become more
aligned to our true selves, we will attract people who are aligned
to our true selves.
If we connect with someone at an early stage of our life and then
begin to experience changes in values and ideals, it is very
possible that our partner may not be able to make the same changes.
This creates problems for both.
We would do best to begin a process of self-knowledge and
determine what we really want out of life. We need to clarify our
values, needs and preferred life style. Having done so, we will then
attract a partner with whom we can share whatever is important to
From the spiritual level, we are already in union with every
being on this earth. When we choose one particular love partner, it
is because we hope to supplement and support each other in our
physical, mental, emotional, material and spiritual needs. Although
the other cannot give us what we do not have, he or she can work
together with us toward finding mutual self-fulfillment.
b. Learn to love yourself:
If we do not believe we are lovable or loved, it is unlikely we
will attract a mate who will abundantly express love to us. We
attract those who will reflect to us the very same feelings we
harbor for ourselves. Even if the other does not reject us, we will
frequently project or imagine that he or she is doing so.
We exhaust our partners with our need for continuous
reaffirmation of their love. When we doubt our self-worth, we easily
fear losing the otherĒs respect, admiration and love. We fear
losing the other to someone else. We then become negative,
possessive, jealous and often so overbearing that we suffocate the
other until he or she does actually leave. And, even if he or she
does not leave, he or she will be unhappy and develop various
protective mechanisms, such as aloofness or aggressiveness.
When we doubt our self-worth, we are in a very difficult position
in any relationship. Our need to be accepted and affirmed by our
partner often causes us to deny our own feelings, needs, beliefs and
values. We try to become who we believe the other wants us to be. We
cannot bear for the other to be dissatisfied or angry with us. We
are afraid we are at fault or that the other will leave us.
c. Develop Inner security.
The same is true concerning our feelings of inner security. If we
have been programmed to believe that we are not safe alone in the
world without our partner, we become a burden on him or her. (This
is regardless of the fact that the other may get energy from our
dependence.) This does not help either of us. We are denying our
real selves, our real power, and our spiritual nature.
I have heard a number of women confess that they have stayed with
their husbands, who were cheating on them for years, not because
they loved them, or believed they would ever change, but because
they feared being alone, especially economically.
In a sense, these women were bartering their self-respect and
happiness for a false sense of security.
It is essential that we build our feelings of self-worth and
inner security so we can love the other without becoming dependent
upon him or her. In this way, we will be more alive and truer to
ourselves in the relationship. Only in this way can we be with the
other because we love him or her and not because we fear being
Internal preparation is necessary before we will be mature enough
to succeed in really using the opportunities a loving union with
another fellow being offers.
TAKING RESPONSIBILITY FOR OUR REALITY
a. The other is to blame...
We are each responsible for the reality we create within and
around us. If we are not happy, it is because we are creating
unhappiness within ourselves. We are creating unhappiness through
our attachments, aversions, expectations, fears and in general,
through our inability to accept what life is offering to us.
A main problem in our relationships is that we often blame the
other when we are not happy or secure. When something goes wrong, we
seek to pass the blame because we find it difficult to accept our
own mistakes and weaknesses.
We also expect the other to fill our emptiness in ways that he or
she cannot. The other cannot create our happiness, security or
feelings of self-worth. When we do not get what we need from the
other, we feel hurt and angry, and usually resort to assessing
Because of this, we can get locked into power games in which each
tries to control, change and correct the other, neither wanting to
be corrected. A bitter battle of wills ensues which defies real,
sincere communication, as each blames without listening to what the
other is saying. If we expect that the other is going to supply what
we are missing in ourselves, we are in for an unpleasant surprise.
We must take responsibility for our health, happiness, harmony,
fulfillment and the general state of affairs in our lives. The key
to finding the happiness and harmony we seek is to stop trying to
change others and change ourselves from within.
b. I am to blame...
The opposite side to this belief system is that we are
responsible for the others. If they are not happy, healthy,
successful, and most of all, not satisfied with us, we feel we are
to blame. We feel we have failed in the role of love partner, child,
parent or sibling, and are susceptible to feelings of
self-rejection, guilt and shame.
When we feel this way, we often turn on the others and blame them
for not doing what they should have done to be healthy, happy,
successful, so that we can feel okay in our role of " being
responsible for their reality."
The responsibility problem has two sides: "They are
responsible for my reality" and "I am responsible for
their reality." Both are illusions that lead to conflicts and
We will dedicate a whole chapter to this matter. COMMUNICATION
a. Expressing needs and feelings rather than blame.
One of the main causes of misunderstandings, tension, bitterness,
unhappiness and relationship failure is our inability to communicate
effectively. We have been programmed to criticize, blame and
intimidate rather than express our real needs and / or feelings of
insecurity, fear, inadequacy, rejection etc. We have learned to
cover our weaknesses and put up a strong face. There are alternative
ways to communicate in which we neither suppress our needs and
values, nor do we hurt or demean the other. We will discuss these
b. Clarifying and communicating our needs before we unite our
lives: Whether we want to see it that way or not, marriage is a
contract between two persons who promise certain things to each
other. Unfortunately for many, this contract is simply a formality
for the religion or the state.
However, two conscious persons wanting to enter into a
relationship have everything to gain by sitting down together and
drawing up their own contract, independent of what the church or
state may stipulate. In this way, they will discover if they really
have the same goals in life, if they have the same ideas about what
their relationship means. They can express what they expect of each
other. This will be an opportunity to discuss lifestyles and
expectations more deeply, to see if they are really meant to unite
their lives, or if it is perhaps better to remain friends.
Couples already married can renew their contract every few years,
making adjustments when agreeable to both which represent their
present relationship needs. These contracts will evolve as their
needs evolve. Many of the exercises presented in this book will aid
A relationship needs to be kept fresh and alive. One way is for
the partners to share various types of common activities. One basic
common activity is bringing up children and everything that
encompasses. Other possibilities might be attending classes,
lectures or cultural events together, playing games, going for
walks, working on some business or creative project together,
singing, dancing, traveling or even reading together, and of course,
expressing love to each other physically.
In these mind and body stimulating activities, we are brought
into deeper contact and have new and interesting subjects about
which to think and communicate. This is much preferable to limiting
our time together to watching television. On the other hand, we need
to respect each otherĒs unique individuality and should not try to
force the other to believe what we do, or pressure him or her into
some activity in which he or she is not interested. However, we all
have everything to gain by being open and experimental about life,
allowing ourselves to try out new experiences and activities. Thus,
there is mutual growth and enrichment.
KEEP LEARNING AND GROWING
Learning and loving are the two reasons for which we have
incarnated into these bodies. When we stop learning or loving, our
life is less meaningful. The purpose of life is to evolve in our
wisdom, love, inner peace, selflessness and creative abilities.
Getting stuck and refusing to grow is the surest way to destroy the
harmony in a relationship.
The disharmony we experience in a relationship actually is a
message that we have something to learn. We would do well to analyze
what we need to learn and make the corresponding adjustments in our
attitude toward life.
From a spiritual point of view, the other is our teacher. His or
her behavior is exactly what we need at this stage of our lives to
learn something about ourselves and free ourselves from some beliefs
or behaviors that are keeping us back in our evolutionary process.
We will dedicate a significant part of this book toward
clarifying what we need to learn from our partnerĒs behaviors that
As our spiritual growth process is the basic reason for our
existence in the physical plane, it is logical that it will be an
important part of any successful relationship. Spiritual activity is
seriously missing from the lives of most families today.
Families could pray or chant together. They could read and
discuss spiritual texts together. They could meditate in silence
together. They could serve the less fortunate in society. Each home
can vibrate with love and harmony.
We should not, however, limit spirituality to these
often-external aspects. OneĒs spirituality is not to be measured by
how many seminars he attends, books he reads, meals he eats, or the
number of hours he meditates. Our spirituality is measured by the
degree our thoughts and behavior are aligned with the values of
love, peace, nonviolence, selflessness and true caring for the
I have unfortunately throughout the years witnessed zealous
spiritual aspirants who perceive their spouses, children or parents
as obstacles to their spiritual growth, believing that their
spirituality is dependent upon their following seminars or
meditating many hours. It is true that these activities can help,
but they should never be reasons to lose our love for those who
might consciously or subconsciously obstruct us. Love and
selflessness are always the highest forms of spirituality.
DISTINGUISH BETWEEN THE OTHER AND HIS BEHAVIOR.
All aspects of our physical and emotional being are in a constant
state of change. Naturally, we will like some and dislike other
aspects of our partner's behavior. As we begin to see our partner as
a spirit living in flesh, we begin to separate his or behavior from
his or her being. Our partner is a spiritual being who always
deserves love and respect, but his or her behavior can be positive
or negative, constructive or destructive, useful or not useful,
uniting or separating, etc.
When we distinguish between being and behavior, we can love the
being even if we cannot accept the behavior. We can talk about the
otherĒs and our behavior as something separate from our being.
Thus, we can correct ourselves and each other, while at the same
time maintaining a deep love on the spiritual level.
SEE THE OTHER AS YOUR TEACHER.
The partner we have at any given time is exactly what life is
giving us at that moment. It is exactly what we need and deserve at
that point in our life. Our partner is our lesson, our spiritual
teacher, and the hand of God in our lives. Our partner is our
opportunity to learn to love and forgive, to be strong and have an
inner center of peace no matter what the other may or may not do.
Our partner is our opportunity to evolve emotionally and
spiritually through love, sacrifice and cooperation. Our partner is
our chance to see our ego more clearly and work on transforming it
into a vehicle of love and creative harmony.
Nothing can destroy the unity and trust in a relationship more
than when either fails to keep his or her word. This causes one to
feel betrayed and lose trust in the other. When this happens a
number of times, the relationship is seriously undermined. It would
be best to be careful concerning what we promise. It is better to
say, "I want to think about it" or "I will try my
best," rather than "Yes, I will do that," and then
not do it.
Keeping promises can have to do with anything from taking out the
garbage or walking the dog to being sexually faithful.
A relationship offers us ample opportunity to develop the
qualities of patience, sacrifice, compassion, acceptance and
unconditional love. Few, if any of us, have learned to love without
conditions or expectations of some type. Perhaps the closest we come
to this ideal is a motherĒs love for her child. With some effort
and good will, we can learn to continue to feel the love we have for
our relationship partners in spite of their weaknesses and negative
tendencies. We can learn understanding, compassion, forgiveness and
REACHING OUT BEYOND THE RELATIONSHIP
As we grow in spiritual awareness, our love will flow out toward
the society around them. We will cease to close ourselves into a
small family environment and start to identify more with the
neighborhood, society, country and with humanity at large. In such
cases, we will help each other to expand this circle of love toward
all beings who come into our lives regardless of their age, sex,
religion, nationality or beliefs.
The family unit will become a core of learning and loving
together and we will then share that which we have developed in our
family unit with the society around us, helping the poor, the
orphans, the ill and generally those in need. Thus, the family unit
becomes a center of light, love and service making the society
around it a more harmonious and beautiful place to live.
YOUR OWN RELATIONSHIP WITH THE DIVINE.
Ultimately, our only lasting source of security and fulfillment
is our relationship with God. Developing this relationship allows us
to develop the inner security and inner fulfillment. With that inner
security, we can afford to be more understanding toward our partner.
We have less fear, and thus, we can listen more carefully to the
other and respond to his or her real needs, rather than be defensive
or protective of our own. When we are secure in ourselves, we can
love the other unconditionally regardless of what he or she does
because we are not dependent. We love the other and choose to be
with him or her out of love and not out of need.
Moving on, we will discuss these and many other aspects of
creating conscious love relationships in greater detail.
SUMMARY OF INNER PREPARATION
1. Clarify your Values, Needs and Life Style. 2. Learn To Love
Yourself. 3. Develop Inner Security. 4. Take Responsibility for your
Reality and let others have responsibility for theirs. 5.
Communicate openly and honestly. 6. Learn to Express Needs and
Feelings Rather than Blame. 7. Participate in Common Activities 8.
Keep Learning And Growing 9. Develop Spiritual Activities 10.
Distinguish Between Others and their Behavior. 11. See The Other As
Your Teacher. 12. Keep Promises 13. Cultivate Unconditional Love 14.
Reach out into the community 15. Develop your own Relationship With