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Submitted by Lodro Rinzler on Thu, 1/12/2012, 2:35pm
Wanting to be in love is natural to the human experience. We all want to love. We love love. However, its highs are dizzying, its lows traumatic enough that we want to rid them from our memory. It almost seems counterintuitive to try to reach contentment and equanimity in our life while also cultivating this roller coaster of emotions.
To think that we need to sort our romantic life into one category of our being and our spiritual growth into another would be a mistake. It is through applying basic Buddhist principles that we can use relationships with others as part of our path. With care and consideration of your partner, falling in love does not have to be such a roller coaster; we just have to learn to handle our expectations…
I have heard so many single people say that they are holding out for Mr. or Ms. Right. If only they could go to the right bar, or the right singles night, or the right website, then that Mr. or Ms. Right would be there waiting for them. As the Buddhist master Dzongsar Khyentse Rinpoche once said about romance, “The problem is not that the right situations don’t arise. It’s not really that. But we always have a certain expectation, we have hopes and fears. And those lead to disappointments.”
When we solidify what we hope to find in a romantic partner, we are heading for a rocky road. We can make a checklist of what we are looking for in terms of physical appearance, intelligence, sense of humor, religious preference, and so on. We think that if we can find all of those qualities in someone, then they are the perfect person for us.
If we strictly adhere to such a list, we are setting ourselves up for failure. Instead, you can remain willing to keep an open mind. You can explore everyone you encounter without a hidden agenda or a checklist. You may end up meeting someone who flies in the face of what you think you need in your life to be happy, but who is indeed the perfect person for you. Through keeping an open mind and heart, you may find true happiness where you least expect it.
Excerpted from THE BUDDHA WALKS INTO A BAR… by Lodro Rinzler, (c)
2012. Published by arrangement with Shambhala Publications, Inc., Boston.
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