My name is Julie and I am 37 years old. Just like most people I also have my own sad story, but I am pleased to say that thanks to many years of therapy, self help, meditation and recently your teachings, I identify with it less and less and rather appreciate the now and my life more and more.
In fact, I feel quite satisfied in general and I really don’t long for anything anymore… that is, except for one thing…
I am single and have been for about 6 years. I really really want to find love, a spiritual partner, and have a family. So when I ask the question ‘Is there anything wrong with this moment’, usually I answer ‘no’ and appreciate the present moment and feel the wonderful feelings that come with it. However, sometimes I feel lonely. I can usually dissolve that feeling by observing it. So the feeling does go away but it still doesn’t solve the problem that I ‘AM’ alone.
Isn’t it normal to want a partner and children, especially for a woman? Is it my ego clinging to an identity formed by society or is my need for maternity visceral and relevant?
And either way, what should I do as I really feel like this is something important that I am missing in my life and it is sometimes quite painful for me. Therefore I can accept it to a certain degree but I still long for it.
At some point, life became divided into male and female, the basic polarity. On the level of our physical form, each one of us embodies this polarity. We are either male or female, which means we are only one half of the whole (I also speak about this in the Power of Now). There is a pull in every human being towards wholeness, which in essence is spiritual, i.e. the return to oneness. On the level of form this expresses itself as a longing for completion through merging with the opposite energy polarity. On the most basic level, it manifests as sexual desire, then as the emotional need to be with a man or a woman, then as love between a man and a woman. (Even in gay couples the basic polarity still operates on an energetic level).
Ultimately, of course, a sense of wholeness and deep fulfillment cannot be found on the level of form, but only through accessing the spiritual dimension of consciousness itself. It is also true that the female body is conditioned through evolution to perpetuate life, to give birth and nurture. So your desire to have a partner and children is indeed, as you put it, visceral. This in itself is not of the ego, although it can become part of it, if it is incorporated into the egoic mind’s judgements and story-making (I need a man/woman to make me happy etc.). It is at this point that male/female relationships become beset with “problems”. Even love easily becomes corrupted in this way by the mind.
So, must you remain unfulfilled unless you find a partner, have a family and children No. (As you must have observed, there is unhappiness in many relationships and marriages).
Since the spiritual dimension has already come into your life, you are beginning to realize that the essence of your being, which is formless, is not really affected even though you may feel some sense of lack on the level of form. For some people, it is precisely the experience of some strong sense of lack that drives them deeper into their essential selves – the I Am without attributes, beingness itself. Of course, you remain open for a relationship or marriage to come into your life, of course you would be happy to have children and indeed this may still happen. But your inner peace and your sense of who you are do not depend on it.
Generally speaking, whenever you experience the lack of something on the level of form that is conventionally considered important for one’s happiness (lack of relationships, of money, lack of freedom, of health, of social identity etc.), use this, while it lasts, as an opportunity to go more deeply within to find the Being that you are prior to all identifications. At the same time, you do what you can on the outer level to remedy this lack. You are much more likely to succeed without if you have already succeeded within. In any case, there is a sense of inner freedom from what happens or doesn’t happen.
Blessings on your journey.