Love and Freedom went out for dinner. This was their third date…and the attraction was hot, the sex had been amazing. So far, however, they had avoided the topic of relationships, and tonight Love had asked if they could finally discuss the issue.
Love picks up the menu and peruses the list of creamy cocktails, whilst Freedom orders his usual whisky on ice.
Love: “I am so enjoying our connection. This feels like something really special.”
Freedom: “It has been amazing indeed. I feel like I am free to really just Be when I am in your presence.”
L: “So I would really like to find a way for us to create a container for this connection so that we can go deeper.”
F: “A container??!”
L: “Yes, you know, decide on some boundaries and commitments so that we both feel safe to open up even more.”
F: “But containers are cages that restrict…we will kill the juiciness and the magic of our connection. Safety breeds boredom you know.”
L: “That’s not always true. Safety can allow us to go deeper. If we don’t hold this connection, we will never go any deeper because our hearts will stay protected.”
F: “ I need you to know that my spiritual path has taken me to a place in which I have transcended relationships. I am polyamorous. You don’t have to hold your heart closed you know…it is up to you.”
L: “well then, how come every so-called polyamorous person I’ve come across doesn’t open their heart very deeply, but skims across the surface of a hundred lovers?”
F: “That is just the voice of your conditioning talking. Perhaps you are addicted to romance and the story. You are not the story…your truth is beyond story. There is no I and there is no you…”
L: “Oh don’t give me all that enlightened talk. I know my nature is truth eternal and all of that…but there is a human part of me too. I do have a story, a past, a childhood…I have feelings, I’ve had broken hearts, love stories, I’ve had fears and pains…all of that is me too”
F: “Me? You are so identified with the me.”
The waiter comes to the table to take orders. Freedom explains how he likes his steak cooked, to precision, and asks for potatoes instead of fries, whilst Love orders the Greek salad.
L: “so who is it that knows exactly how he likes his steak cooked if it is not a me?”
F: “I’m starting to wish I was just at home eating in silence and having a quiet night in”
Love sulks a bit and plays with her napkin. Freedom wishes he didn’t find her so attractive…so complicated this whole relating business. Perhaps he should go back to celibacy and be done with the whole drama.
L: “It seems to me that you are afraid of surrendering into love because you fear losing your self in it.”
F: “I don’t identify with a self…”
L: “Good. Then there’s nothing to fear. If you have no self then there is nothing to lose by surrendering to this connection.”
F: “But darling, can’t you see we would be feeding a drama?”
L: “Can’t you see you are in denial of the existence of the drama? The story goes on, even after we have realized that our true nature is nothingness. That story is life…some call it “Leela”, the play of life. You are not here to be nothingness….you are here to be nothingness experiencing itself as everythingness!”
F: “well I still don’t see what committing to one woman has to do with that. Surely the best way to experience life as everythingness is to make love with every woman! Ha ha!!!”
L: “are you really making love with every woman, or just having sex?”
F: “Look I was joking…of course I don’t want to make love with every woman. But this incessant need to commit is just conditioning. You were brought up to believe in marriage and all of that.”
L: “I’m not asking you to marry me. I am suggesting that together we build a temple for this connection. A tantra teacher once told me that they watched kids in a playground with a fence around it. The children filled the playground. They took down the fence and the children played in a small, close huddle in the center, they obviously didn’t feel so safe anymore. They put the fence back and the kids returned to the edges. So this shows us how we can open more when we can create a container.”
F: “you are actually suggesting that we feel more free with a fence up around us?”
F: “hmmmm… but I look at my married friends and they seem so shut down, so your theory crumbles”
L: “Well perhaps it matters how you build the fence and with what intention. Are you building it to keep your partner trapped in, or are you building it to nourish and protect something precious? You know some people build containers out of fear…they fear losing their partner and so try to build a wall.”
F: “Of course! Exactly…that is what I have been trying to tell you!”
L: “But what if we built a container not from fear, but out of wanting to hold something precious and nourish it so that it can grow? Like you do with a child.”
F: “Well that sounds a bit better, but why would our connection need protection? We are not children”
L: “Because our hearts are vulnerable; they are like little children sometimes. The deeper they open, the more those precious vulnerable parts become exposed. It is so easy for fear to rush in, and before you know it we have shut down and pulled away out of fear.”
F: “I hear you…it all sounds good, but still I feel that if we really want to live beyond fear, we have to enter the Unknown and live without guarantees, without being assured that we are there for each other…just see what each day brings.”
L: “Do you lock the door of your house when you leave?”
Freedom frowns into his glass, swirling the ice cubes.
L: “I’m just saying we live in a world that is not endless unknown. It is both known and unknown. You have some plans and also you have some free space for adventure. Didn’t you plan to arrive at this restaurant at 8pm as we agreed? But when we got here we had no idea how the night would turn out…there is both plan and non-plan. If we lived lives with only plans, in the known, it would indeed be rigid and boring. But if we lived only in the unknown, without a single plan…it would be chaos!”
F: “You’re being awfully logical, Love”
L: “It is true and I truly want to soften into the truth of my nature, soften as love…but I am asking for us to create the situation in which I can really do that.”
Her eyes glistened with unspilled tears as she looked imploringly into Freedom’s eyes, and he felt a lurch in his chest, and he sighed deeply. Sometimes he just wanted to scoop her up in his arms and hold her close.
F: “What would it look like to create one of these so-called containers that served both of us, that served both Love and Freedom? Is it possible?”
L: “Everything is possible.”
F: “It would need to be flexible, so we don’t get stuck in something. It would need to be constantly adapted and updated.”
L: “That sounds like a good idea. It would then be alive, like our connection!”
Freedom felt relief that she was listening and even agreeing with him, he felt himself relax a little.
F: “I would like to create a different set of boundaries for when we are together and when we are apart, as they are such different situations.”
Love considered this. “Well why don’t we start by working out what our intentions are, and the fears that come up…then we can see if we can co-create from there.”
Freedom started to enjoy the process. It felt good to know that she actually wanted to hear his intention, and that she wanted to be aware of fears that might arise. Love was excited to share on a deeper level with Freedom through this process…after all he was the most present lover she had ever had, and she was thrilled by the possibility of loving him even deeper.
And thus, over steak and salad, Freedom and Love began to scribble ideas on the back of a napkin, sharing their deepest longings and clearest intentions, expressing the fears that arose, listening to each other and holding space for one another. The candle on the table flickered shapes across their faces as they created together their own unique recipe for connection, a temple for Love and Freedom.
© 2021. Shashi Solluna. All rights reserved.