- THE MATING DILEMMA
More divorces more mental agony. Why? Pl go thru this article and chew the contents in your mind; advise the youngsters; create harmony and peace in the family and society…………
There is so much talk of marital discord nowadays. Every journal or TV program is discussing it. We do not see any special discord that we do not have in our every day lives that necessitates a special name. It is the same old clash of two desire entities that we encounter everyday, everywhere and with everyone, each wanting its own way to the exclusion of consideration for the other. Selfishness and self-centeredness are part of the gifts endowed us by nature and that men and women are not really designed to live together.
Marriage is team-work and this is an acquired trait which has to be learnt and practiced with serious intent. Of course, we complement each other but most of us would be equally happy living alone, content in our own selfish balloons. Modern life has made that dream a real possibility and all are aware of it but there is a big BUT.
Our genes and hormones have a potent force of their own. Destiny which is still running our lives, we may accept it or not, keeps us throwing into contact with attractive people of the opposite sex which gets the desire centers humming. But marriage cannot be an excuse for a romp in bed; anyway as if it matters, even legally or anyone cares. So why the farce?
The Ying and Yang principle is at work in nature. Opposites coexist and attract each other. Observe closely and you will see that by some quirk of fate, every couple is a pairing of two people with opposite tendencies. The Law of Creation takes us to our next level of evolution by the effort we put in to live with each other. We are each other’s teachers.
Clashes will be but we have to learn to see both the ends of the argument and learn to go beyond the obvious and mundane, for there are always some common points of appui as well. The Creator has used the sexual energy well. There is a lure here which serves a dynamic purpose. It keeps repopulating the Mother earth and also helps in realizing the merger of the opposite sides of the same coin in the form of two individuals. It should be best seen as a spiritual discipline.
At the other end of the spectrum is the fact that we cannot all make our bread, tailor our clothes, make our shoes, construct our house and make our cars; so we need other people in our lives. In extension we therefore need a society and if we wish to live within this society, the word teaming-up again appears and we have to accept certain confinements. Therefore it is plain to all to see that life is a huge compromise after all. It’s so galling!
The BUT I was talking about makes its splash here. We are on our best behavior most of the time; continuously adjusting to the pressures of people and circumstances. BUT the moment we cross the threshold of our homes, we find it difficult to make the same compromises in our marriages willingly with a singing heart. Why? It is very well and facile to live when we make short contacts and all go home at the end of the day to our own watering holes, alone in our comfort zones; with the option to keep or break a relationship if we wish to. In marriage we have to be with the same person day in and day out for ever and ever with no respite. Readjustments are in order.
It seems as if the partners are forever saying “Be reasonable. Do it my way”. This when coupled with a tendency to overbear is a formula for disaster. At the back of the mind there is always the dormant thought that we can always part which is no help at all. I belong to the old school. No divorce for me; so a mutually acceptable path has to be found and if there are children from the marriage, no possibility of exit at all. Something was started and it has to be finished. We made our bed and now we need to lie in it. Do we have a right to hurt the person we brought home or run away from the responsibility of raising our children? I wish lawmakers would go back to the old ways and put it into act soon. The effort that has now gone out of relationships would reappear and so much frustration and pain needlessly imposed by humans on themselves could be avoided.
There are even impossible demands when the partners are taken for granted. We need to wake up from this dream. The solution would have been in the compromise attitude but to this we are not prepared to concede. Very good reasons are cited and all very tangible and real. Everything is taken into consideration except the fact that the first point of law is that the marriage has to be maintained at all costs as a garden of joy. It is our marriage and our life. Everything else pales into insignificance. So discord is inevitable unless we are prepared to let go a bit and cross over into the other’s camp and live for the other person. This is said for both men and women and has to be a concerted effort. Personally I find this idea so wonderful. My life is no more a closed box. I let somebody in and a close partnership begins with of course an absolute interdependence. I am not afraid any more of the big bad wolf. This is the beginning of happiness. I do lose a bit of the “I” but win the world. Putting up one’s feet is such a pleasure. We did marry for the small comforts of married life, did we not?
We live much harried lives. What we think, feel and speak about are never the same things. We are hiding so much.. There is an accepted perverse insincerity practiced at all moments and at every level of our existence. In the outer world where every man is for himself and wolf eat wolf is the situation, there is much to be said for a bit of charade and hiding away. But, in a marriage? Marriage has to be seen in the light of the common man’s yogic/spiritual journey. It is, whatever you may argue, an evolutionary process in which both the parties including children grow into more matured beings. When you see it in this light, you have to allow the barriers to fall and sincerity has to pervade in the home. Thoughts, feelings and the spoken word will need to be in harmony at all times otherwise chaos and clashes will erupt. Lording over is absolutely out. Cleverness is a no-no. At least aim to reach this level. There will be stumblings, yet wherever this spirit of candid bumbling exists, there will be laughter and rarely any quarrels. The human spirit is a forgiving one, whenever, genuinely, honesty is seeping through, joy prevails.
The other factor which I have seen taking a heavy toll of the quiet life in marriages is the poor quality of communication. Poor language use, bad speech habits and worse, inadvertent habits like speaking from distances or changing the place of things and forgetting to tell. We are also plagued by the sense of right and wrong and get irritated in righteous indignation. This indignation turns easily into a scream like a cracker going off without restraint. Always forgetting that how we deal with the everyday world and how we need to deal in our marriage world are two different things. In marriage it is the team not the individual who matters. We forget it to our pain. Lets never forget if the other party is grating on our nerves, then we are no angels. Have we ever tried to find out how we are grating on other people’s nerves?
We are constantly giving out wrong signals. Utter confusion prevails at the best of times. So first we need to begin by listening a bit more and not reacting to every word that one hears. Not only to words bit those intangible sighs as well and those inconsistencies in behavior patterns. Consider that the other person may be thinking aloud or just uttering the wrong words because of other extraneous circumstances and so many other fears and complexes that run amok in our lives.
Just think it over for a while. Forgive and forget if you have been mildly wronged. Show your appreciation often and learn to remain silent in as many languages you can. Along with this attitude, ask for favors and when the other person asks for it, give them. We do make the mistake of asking favors and wanting instant gratification but when the other person asks for something, we are always busy in our own world and cannot grant any. This will not do. Gratitude needs to be cultivated and practiced a bit more. It is rarer than you would think. Especially in small inconsequent things, which are really the ones which swell into tidal waves.
All that is needed is a little shift in our own orientation to our life and partner. Give and give and take some.. Rather you will notice you will get without asking and much more than you could have asked for.
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