Do you think it is possible to create a successful relationship when one individual is of one faith or religious belief and the other follows another type of belief – or perhaps isn’t in to spirituality of any kind? Not only is it possible to create successful relationships under these circumstances, but, you may also discover great opportunities for broadening your understanding, releasing judgment and increasing your compassion. True spirituality, after all, comes in as many forms as there are people.
Last Easter morning, three of the people in my spirituality group gathered at my dining room table each with a special reading, gift of poetry or message from their individual faith. One woman practices Wicca white magic, another brought a reading from her last twelve step meeting, another shared from her past experience as a nun and I brought my metaphysical experience. We each sat for a moment in silence, then lit a candle as we shared a message or ritual close to our hearts about rebirth, spring and beginning all things new. At the end of our process the energy in the room was alive with love. The confluence of our energy had brought us into such a united space that no one wanted to move. We just quietly let ourselves be filled up with the joy and blessing in our diversity. Though we each had come from different disciplines, each person’s offering had a special impact that was positive and timely for us individually.
God as we perceive Him/Her, or The Universal Energy is not limited. If you want to see Spirit in color you look at a flower. If you want to see Spirit in flight look at a bird. If you want to see Spirit with power, you stand beside the ocean. One’s spirituality can be evident in a desire for soul deep connecting with a beloved. We all perceive Divine energy in different ways. The more conscious you are, the more you are able to see Divine energy in all things, even in a partner who believes differently than you do. In fact, a person who professes no belief in God at all may still be very spiritual because he or she is highly principled, or is someone who loves and respects the inherent beauty of the earth.
Religious leaders and masters who are truly evolved understand there are threads of truth in every belief system and each of us must choose that which we most relate to for ourselves. Truly evolved, spiritual people do not judge each other’s beliefs. Neither do they attempt to control each other by recruiting them, shaming them or attempting to frighten them into believing their way. Judgment comes from a base of fear and a need for control. When we are afraid, we want those around us to believe as we do. After all, we think, if you believe as I do, then I must be right. If you believe differently than I do, then perhaps I am wrong. Not necessarily.
In a relationship where two people believe differently there are great opportunities to learn about yourselves. You get to learn about your level of tolerance for difference and your level of safety with letting your partner be who ever he or she is, and believe however he or she wants to believe. While standing in the differences, you have an opportunity to open your heart and experience the joy or grace your partners may be experiencing from their perspective. When your love for someone is sincere, and not based upon your need for sameness, you find that it is easy to support your partner in activities that are soul enriching and bring your partner closer to the Divine, regardless of the form.
Relationships are inherently a classroom for the work of the soul. In the space between where two people meet there is an opportunity for learning a great deal about yourself. Although you may truly long for your partner to join you in the special ways you worship or practice your faith, not having them do so, allows for the opportunity to let your self connect deeply with others who share your faith. It gives you a chance to broaden your support group and test your willingness to be vulnerable and connected at a soul level with someone with whom you are not in an intimate relationship. Too often we expect that our partner should be the sole source for all of our support and learning. In this circumstance where you must learn to reach out beyond your mate relationship, you may find the world is filled with others who can enrich your life and align with you in your beliefs.
Think about what a gift you will give yourself and your partner when you are able to look across the table at your mate, beyond the form of their belief system or lack of it, and see the spiritual nature and true essence of your beloved. There is a spirit in there, and when you are able to connect to it, the form it takes will become irrelevant. Love is all that is left and that is the highest form of spirituality.
© Dr. Dina Bachelor Evan 2013