A bit curious still in watching myself in relationship. I took the learning from my last post to heart and seem to have moved past that into something much sweeter. The thing I’m noticing is a tendency in myself to want to push away when I feel I’m not being met fully, and to move towards when I feel I am. Moving towards I don’t have much problem with, but the pushing away definitely feels very protective for me. I haven’t been honoring that urge here, but it does come up now and again. It’s always easier for me emotionally to be the one who leaves a relationship. As I look back, I can even see where I’ve gotten back together with an ex in a way so that I could be the one who does the leaving, or at least has an equal say in the matter. Nice to be seeing that more clearly to not necessarily have to act that out any longer, or at least do so with awareness.
I really like this newer way of being in relationship for me, not being so guarded, so hesitant, so one-foot-always-out-the-back-door. And I love being more expressive through touch and words. I don’t feel quite so met on the touch side here, but through good communication between us I’ve come to understand her way more and realize that we were raised in very different environments, and cultures as well which affects many of our patterns.
What happens after we leave India in mid-April will have to wait and see. My hunch is that she’ll be going back to an ex of hers who I think somewhere in her heart she really still loves, even though they seem to be matched like a kerosene blanket and a Zippo lighter. We all need to learn what we need to learn in our own time and own way, and it’s not for me to get in the way of that. All things that are meant to be come in their own time, but I will say that this time that we are having here is quite sweet. It also feels simple, but in many ways that simplicity is coming from a place inside of me which has an inner calmness to it.
Through this, I’m learning more about what I’d like in a partner. Communication capacity with honesty and openness to learn about the other is critical. That seems to be working here. Temperament match here may be an issue, but I’m also learning to see her fire and passion as a strong asset for her. What I really want is love, something fairly pure and simple, where the two people actually love each other and it shows up consistently through the day through action and words. Perhaps it’s not much more complicated than that.
Just a note from Dharamsala – yesterday was a very sweet day for us as we met a wonderful monk named Tenzing at the Dalai Lama’s main temple. He was caring for the temple and loves photography so he actually took my camera for a few minutes and took some photographs of the main altar there. I did a nice portrait of him which may work nicely for my Eyes of Compassion project. I’ll have to see it on a bigger screen first to know for sure. After we left the temple, we did another walk around the grounds which is full of prayer flags and mantras carved in stone. We we thrashed by a big thunderstorm and then a sweet Tibetan nun invited us to her room where she taught Shanti how to tie special ties on 10″ rich blue cord. She spoke no English but we remained there for 2 hours, laughing and just enjoying sweet company. She offered us what she had which was bananas and cups of hot water,. although she only had one mug. Too poor perhaps for even tea. It was a magically sweet way to spend the evening.
One final thing happened which was very special as well. I had received an email from my friend Karen asking me to pray for her as she was going through some hard times. I told her I’d spin some prayer wheels for her. The prayer wheels here contain tens of thousands of mantras so spinning them is supposed to provide the merit of millions of prayers. I was walking around the temple spinning them with her in mind, when I stopped for a moment and started singing a song that she used to sing. It’s a gospel song called “Thank You,” sung to God. The words are:
Here I am, standing here father,
I just want to take out a little time
A little time to say ‘Thank You,’
Oh oh oh, ‘Thank You,’
You see you watched over me all night long
And you held me in your loving arms
and I want to say ‘Thank You.
I started crying as I sang it, my heart being so easily touched these days, and stopped my walking and spinning of prayer wheels to just be there for a moment, when an older man from South India wearing full orange robes on a pilgrimage to the north walked up to me and put prayer beads around my neck and gave me a hug. We then went on walking silently and spinning together. Karen, if you are reading this, I’ll try to bring those beads back to you as they really belong to you.
Heavy thunderstorm with lightning and big rain for most of the night provided the soundtrack later for a sweet candlelit evening.