May 23, 2012 0
(Originally Published on The Huffington Post on 5/18/2012)
I’m no Buddhist monk by any means, but I am always looking for ways of relating to my partner on a deeper level and am on a continued journey with him to enrich the levels of intimacy between us. When a recent interview on love and relationships between Buddhist author/teacher Thich Nhat Hanh and everyone’s favorite TV talking head and spirit animal Oprah Winfrey came across my desk, I decided to take a closer look. They were chatting about meditation and four mantras that can be used between people in love to help strengthen the bond and establish healthy ways of embracing, supporting, and reassuring each other through mindfulness. Nhat Hanh is quoted as saying these first two mantras can bring “instant happiness” to any relationship, so if you’re into that sort of thing, listen up!
Mantra 1: “Darling, I’m here for you.”
The idea behind this is to spotlight your presence in the relationship without being focused on the past or the future. Nhat Hanh teaches this practice because he believes that when you love someone, the best you can offer is your presence in the here and now. I have a hard time doing this when I’m by myself, much less in a committed relationship with someone I care deeply about. The past can be so hurtful, so sad, so present, and the future can be scary to the point that I have to look away at times. This is where the importance of staying present comes in. Much of the trouble I run into in my relationship has little to do with what is happening now between the two of us and everything to do with what has happened in days gone by with former partners, our history together, and the fears that take over when thinking about how that will all play out over our time together. Ultimately, if I could stay in the present day, in the moment with my most treasured person, this would all fade away.
Mantra 2: “Darling, I know you are there, and I am so happy.”
Thich Nhat Hanh writes, “To be loved means to be recognized as existing.” In letting your partner know you are there for them and acknowledging that they are also there for you, each of you is Read the rest of this entry »Tweet