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What is the point in finding a spouse after awakening?

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One of my biggest fears in life is that I'll end up alone or end up with someone I don't quite jive with (granted, at the time of this post I'm only 25 and I may look back on this in 10 years and laugh at the insecurity). However, it seems a lot of very advanced practitioners (meaning beyond second path and sometimes somewhere in the territory of 3rd) on here still go on dates (and some that seem fully awakened still get married or have spouses). 

Here's my question: what's the drive to date or marry someone for those practitioners that have gained that level (or quite a bit) of insight? It seems like that dissolving the center point would relieve some sort of pressure related to this aspect of human fulfillment. I understand we are still human and experience these emotions, but can there be some level of okay-ness with being single after awakening where suffering due to that fact isn't an issue?

RE: What is the point in finding a spouse after awakening?
Answer
10/4/18 3:04 AM as a reply to Hibiscus Kid.
Hi Kid,
the fact that doesn't change with awakening is that long term realtionships with serious commitment (marriage) are going to be the most relevant and deep human interactions you will have. Not to say that you cannot have deep and meanignful relationships with friends but the sheer amount of time and brutal honesty in a proper marriage is not something you can really incorporate in a friendship practically speaking. So there is the reason for pursuing them.

But yes, if you end up single after awakening, there is definately less suffering surrounding that fact. Then it is just a fact, not this huge monster to be afraid of. Sometimes sad, sometimes unwanted, but still in proportion and relatively easy to deal with, as you are basically ok. I personally also think that awakening can help in finding a partner that is suitable and with whom you jive with, as it helps in being more connnected to reality instead of fantasy. This can reduce dramatically some of the nasty patterns I see around me with regards to relationship issues.

RE: What is the point in finding a spouse after awakening?
Answer
10/4/18 3:35 AM as a reply to Hibiscus Kid.
You are right that in a sense there is a general okeyness with everything and being single is just a fact of life one can be ok with. One can also fully experience sadness for being single and be ok with that,

As why one gets married after enlightenment? That is the same as why one does anything instead of continuously beatifically staring into space!
After the ecstasy, the laundry...
Chop wood... Carry water...

RE: What is the point in finding a spouse after awakening?
Answer
10/4/18 5:46 AM as a reply to Todo.
Jehanne’s comment above is interesting about deep and honest connections with another person. Except in the relationships I see around me (I’m a long-term singleton), I observe a lot of pathological and subtle emotional distortion and abuse and what-not. Seems to me people often partner up out of insecurity, such as suggested by the OP here, and bring a troubled lifetime of psych difficulties with them into that mix. Definitely not something a person wants who cherishes inner peace and contentment above having someone around to talk to. But then I’m not a very advanced nor ‘realised’ practitioner so I’m always open to learning more...

RE: What is the point in finding a spouse after awakening?
Answer
10/4/18 5:52 AM as a reply to Hibiscus Kid.
People never stop being human with a variety of emotional, psychological, and sexual needs, no matter what degree of awakening, and denying or repressing those needs tends to lead to a whole mess of trouble. Even those who take vows of celibacy don't magically become neutered--they make a choice to funnel that energy elsewhere and must carefully and honestly manage the normal urges that inevitably arise.

Having a spouse can be a challenging spiritual discipline in and of itself. Our significant others tend to see the best and the worst of us as they know us most intimately and typically live in close quarters with us. You have to stick together on good days and bad days, sickness and health, etc. There's a lot to be learned there, and having a long term relationship with a suportive spouse is quite a gift.

But the most advanced practitioner I know who is single does seem a lot more okay with it than they might otherwise be. There's definitely a lot more to life than being married. However, age 25 is way too early to start worrying that you'll be forever alone, IMO emoticon You would probably be better off cultivating good social and relationship skills and getting out there to meet people so you can start figuring out who you do and don't jive with.

RE: What is the point in finding a spouse after awakening?
Answer
10/4/18 7:02 AM as a reply to Peter S.
Peter S:
Jehanne’s comment above is interesting about deep and honest connections with another person. Except in the relationships I see around me (I’m a long-term singleton), I observe a lot of pathological and subtle emotional distortion and abuse and what-not. Seems to me people often partner up out of insecurity, such as suggested by the OP here, and bring a troubled lifetime of psych difficulties with them into that mix. Definitely not something a person wants who cherishes inner peace and contentment above having someone around to talk to. But then I’m not a very advanced nor ‘realised’ practitioner so I’m always open to learning more...


Exactly! I've seen those relationships that you describe, and to me that it the stuff to stay away from. So when I talk about marriage and partnership, I don't think of relationships that have the characteristics that you descibe. Done right, and with the right mindset, long term partner are absolutely valuable to have around.

After awakening (stream entry) it is easier to partner up for the right reasons, because you are not being pulled into this unhealthy relationship drama and dynamics that is all too common.

RE: What is the point in finding a spouse after awakening?
Answer
10/4/18 5:20 PM as a reply to Jehanne S Peacock.
Thanks for the feedback, Jehanne. I’d totally believe you about the post-SE advantages one can bring to working with the challenges of relationships, as it seems to clarify a variety of areas of one’s life. I hope to find out more about that some day.

But as for ‘doing relationships right,’ that’s my whole point. For example, no one ever gets married with the intention of ruining their relationship and getting divorced in a fairly short time, and yet the number of times I’ve seen that happen stuns me. (I was a wedding photographer for some years, and I believe you can tell the fate of a relationship by the dynamic on the day.) Everyone goes into it thinking they’re the ones getting it right, who will beat the divorce statistics, who have their shit sorted out better than the ones whose marriages end up on the rocks. And then...

So, clearly, people have large and elusive blindspots when it comes to their own failings, as well as the fatal shortcomings of the relationship they’re getting into. Or of course, people and circumstances can just change in ways no one could foresee. On the one hand, as you suggest with great sincerity (and I believe you), being in a long-term partnership could be deeply rewarding. On the other, being completely free from the poison some people (and their relatives/friends) exude, the need to control or project or transfer, and instead be able to explore and travel and be in whatever way seems most meaningful, as well as be there more fully for the loved ones in one’s life, can also be profoundly and powerfully fulfilling.

So OP, don’t fret the growing old alone thing. Because if it actually ever happens to you, it might be the best thing that ever happened! ;-)

(I hope my comments are taken in the boisterous but friendly debating style they’re intended.)

RE: What is the point in finding a spouse after awakening?
Answer
10/4/18 8:00 AM as a reply to Peter S.
Peter S:
I observe a lot of pathological and subtle emotional distortion and abuse and what-not. Seems to me people often partner up out of insecurity, such as suggested by the OP here, and bring a troubled lifetime of psych difficulties with them into that mix.

This is what I observe as well. I've watched friends of mine who are serial daters go through so much emotional turbulence. And as for the long-term relationships, the divorce rates don't lie. That being said, I believe it can work if a couple is present, honest and clear with each other, but it's much more complicated than a fairy tale idea of "true love".

As someone who's been single for a long time and "partially-awakened", the deeper I see myself in practice, the more OK I am with being single. This doesn't mean I don't get little crushes or don't feel lonliness sometimes. There was just a point where I clearly saw that dating (going out of my way to find dates), for me, was more trouble than it was worth. I could very well see a partner walking into my life at some point, but I'm definitely not out looking for her.

However, Hibiscus Kid, you're 25. I'm not sure you should take anyone's advice on dating, yet. These things you really need to just live out and figure out yourself. emoticon     

RE: What is the point in finding a spouse after awakening?
Answer
10/4/18 6:53 PM as a reply to Hibiscus Kid.
Thank you for your input everyone! I guess feelings of lonliness are especially powerful in me because they are closely tied into feelings of self acceptance, self worth, and because people at my age start moving in together or get engaged so there's some self comparison going on there, etc. And there are quite a few reasons that I'm self concious...

Truth is, the last time I was in a relationship, I looked forward to being single (she and I were not a good match) so that I could pursue my interests which was difficult to do when we were spending so much time together. The issue is, once I am single, the difficult emotions associated with that fact tend to hinder the self improvement that I so crave (self improvement includes meditation and hobbies). In the end, this becomes a weird spiral because I want to improve myself to seem interesting and worthy to a future S.O. The irony here, is that I'm pursuing things based not only on my interests, but also to appear more attractive and that's sort of annoying to me. It takes the fun out of things (as in I might think, "I need to be good at cooking to impress my future S.O." instead of just having fun experimenting with different ingredients). Also, wouldn't it be awesome to interact with a person that we might be attracted to without the stress of it going well? 

This splits off into a related idea that Daniel Ingram has touched on related to DnD (Dungeons & Dragons) characters (I personally relate this to video game characters): There are many axes of human development. These axes span everything from cooking, gardening, exercising, meditation, human interaction, reading, writing, creating music, career, family, etc. I'd like to explore these various axes of development and develop the ones that I am personally interested in. In more modern, open-world video games, developing your character is this impersonal, yet necessary part of advancing in the story line (and exploring the map is also important and part of the fun). It is fun to try and get your video-game-self to level up and gain all these different stats... however, life isn't impersonal the way video games are because of the fact that emotions can get in the way. I suppose that I'd like to get to a point where I can just freely develop myself in this life without the emotional baggage (similar to developing a character in a video game) and just explore this life as it is. I'm aware that awakened folks experience emotions, but these emotions seem to be in proportion to what they are experiencing and will (hopefully) not derail what's going on. 

So I guess that's why I ask about marriage/relationships because those emotions of being single are tough to deal with (for me at least), and those emotions/pressures don't come up in video games. Then again, I'm being naive because developing a character in a video game is very different from being a real life human. Real life humans have baggage to deal with that our fictitious selves don't have. I've been in relationships that were more trouble than they were worth, and I'd sort of prefer to get to a point where I can be myself and not deal with the neuroses of others (as has been mentioned above and as I have experienced). Maybe that's not possible though, so I'm interested in seeing where everyone stands on this issue. 

Thank you all for your opinions! This thread has been an interesting one.         

RE: What is the point in finding a spouse after awakening?
Answer
10/4/18 9:25 PM as a reply to Hibiscus Kid.
Hey HK, that’s a very open and honest response. Nice! In particular: “wouldn't it be awesome to interact with a person that we might be attracted to without the stress of it going well?” Yes, and that’s the whole crux of the thing. How to be true to yourself in the face of all these demands to fit in, get along, etc. Well spotted. 

You also mention relationships that were more trouble than they were worth - again, well spotted. After reading what you’ve got to say, and knowing your age, and if I were a trusted friend or older brother, here’s what I’d say to you. Get rid of or store your stuff, grab a one-way ticket to, say, Nepal or Uganda or Myanmar, and go find an opportunity to volunteer in some broken-down place where just teaching English or delivering meals or planting trees makes a big difference in the lives of people who suffer on a level you/we can’t imagine. Do that for a year or two, and then come on back to your questions of finding out what you want and who you are and what’s authentic and true and what’s not. And I guarantee you without a shadow of a doubt you will have a ton more clarity on those things. Or you’ll have lost interest in them entirely. Both good outcomes. And know that while you’re doing it, you’ll be amongst a ton of young people who seem very much like yourself...

Another dimension to this topic I encounter among young friends is that they get the cart before the horse. A person who has a full and interesting life, full of great learning experiences, diverse personal interests, a passionate and advancing career/project, etc, are a lot more interesting to be around than those who don’t. So get those things sorted out, and the bonding with a significant other just arises on its own. It can’t help but happen because you’ll be someone people want to be around.

I hope all this is helpful and doesn’t just compound any issues ;-) So go on, find a world map and pick a place! 




RE: What is the point in finding a spouse after awakening?
Answer
10/5/18 2:19 AM as a reply to Peter S.
Peter S:
But as for ‘doing relationships right,’ that’s my whole point. For example, no one ever gets married with the intention of ruining their relationship and getting divorced in a fairly short time, and yet the number of times I’ve seen that happen stuns me. (I was a wedding photographer for some years, and I believe you can tell the fate of a relationship by the dynamic on the day.) Everyone goes into it thinking they’re the ones getting it right, who will beat the divorce statistics, who have their shit sorted out better than the ones whose marriages end up on the rocks. And then...

Yes, you're absolutely spot on about that. And I can't claim that I don't have any blind spots myself. I do know that I lack some of the blind spot that I've observed my friends have, and have fared better in the relationship field so far, with 20 years with the same partner atm (I'm in my thirties). But ofcourse, everybody's blind spots are _blind_ spots, always emoticon
To me, this problem is tied to the fundamental ingorance. And it is a hard problem: how do you point to someone who is ignorant, that there is something they need to take care of if they do not already know? Or yourself for that matter, as you can only truly affect what's going on in your own mind and behaviour. It has to come from the honest inspection of the person themselves, as often advice from friends is not understood, it does not connect to the core process because of the underlying ignorance.

The interesting point you mention about the dynamic of the wedding day is a valuable observation. There might be belittling going on, ignoring the other person, being overly concerned about the other person, clinging to the other person, reacting neurotically, there might be actual discussion and equality between the two, for example. People might not be aware of what they are doing, in which case adding some attention to the ways one behaves and reacts might be good. In addition, they might not care in the sense that they do not realize that saying subtly insulting things to the other is leading to divorce eventually.

Or of course, people and circumstances can just change in ways no one could foresee.

Yup, an undiscovered brain tumour that makes the other person violent and toxic is a good one.

So OP, don’t fret the growing old alone thing. Because if it actually ever happens to you, it might be the best thing that ever happened! ;-)
Yes emoticon I'm resisting the urge to give any more relationship advice as my own experience is limited. But I'll say that I've heard from people and seen myself, that there is certain easiness with the other person, when it is something worth pursuing. Don't buy into this story that relationships need to be hard. I mean they are, but there is a difference between good-hard and bad-hard that is impossible for me to go into with any more depth at this moment!
Peter S:

(I hope my comments are taken in the boisterous but friendly debating style they’re intended.)

Yes, they are emoticon

RE: What is the point in finding a spouse after awakening?
Answer
10/5/18 3:32 AM as a reply to Jehanne S Peacock.
A difference between good-hard and bad-hard relationships - yes! I like that.

Would love to share some of those wedding day stories in the appropriate setting ;-)