Love is Not a Relationship—Love is a State of Mind
Can you picture looking into a baby stroller, into a baby's eyes? Have you ever thought about how many love songs use the word "baby" in their lyrics? Know this overlap is no coincidence. It refers mainly to the state of mind you're in. Amazingly no one seems to notice, as most people attribute this word use to love. Think about it though. Are you in love with every cute baby in a baby carriage? My answer may surprise you—in a way, you are. You see, feeling love more refers to the state of mind you're in than to any actual relationship. Why? Because love is not a relationship. Love is a state of mind.
Love is also not a feeling per se, albeit we do use the word love this way. And when you love something or someone, you do feel a lot of feelings. Mainly though what you feel is curious about whomever or whatever you love. This curiousity is the heart and soul of love.
If love is a state of mind, then what is a relationship? A relationship is nature's way of getting us to face whatever prevents us from feeling love. Contrary to all those self-help nut-jobs who claim we shoud get out of our dysfunctionsal relationships, in truth, there are no dysfunctional relationships. There are only better and worse partnerships—people who are less or more willing to face whatever prevents them from feeling love. Or said in other words, people who are less or more curious about each other.
The upshot of all this is, there are three ordinary states of mind. In one, you experience love. In one you tetter in and out of this experience. And in one, you can't experience love. This means the key to expericning love is knowing your state of mind. In this article,
Falling in Love
Can you picture the first time you fell in love? Rumi called this experience, "the glance." Most of us think it's something else entirely, something we call "falling in love." Of course, even thought we believe this is possible, we also know this wonderful state never lasts. And when it ends, we reason this was yet another time we chose the wrong person.
In truth, we always chose the right person. But we eventually lose access to our feelings. We then misinterpret this as falling out of love when in reality,
Two Curious Minds Make a Complete Circuit
The First State of Mind - the Conscious Mind
This state of mind is known by many names. It is the state of mind we all lived in during the first two years we were alive. Theorists call it the conscious state of mind. Mothers and lovers call it love. But regardless of what you call it, it’s the only state of mind in which you can learn, love, grow, and heal.
The down side to this state of mind is that it is the state of mind in which you can incur wounds. Wounds are painful surprises which block your ability to give and receive love. In a sense then, the most important thing to know about this state is that it’s the only state of mind in which your very nature can change.
Ask people who have been in long term relationships what it's like and most will say it's hard work. Some will add, it's worth it. Some will question why they stay. Some will stare emptily into the air. So are all relationships doomed to end in resignation and hard work? They are if you never learn to recognize how states of mind affect your ability to love.
One Curious Mind and One Certain Mind Make an Unstable (intermittent) Circuit
The Second State of Mind - the Subconscious Mind
This state of mind is also known by many names. It is the state of mind we all lived in from age two to age seven. Theorists call it the subconscious state of mind. Mothers and lovers call it trying. But regardless of what you call it, in this state, it takes great effort to learn, heal wounds, grow, and feel love.
The upside to this state of mind is that it is hard to get wounded here, albeit it is easier to relive wounds here than in the unconscious state. In a sense then, the most important thing to know about the subconscious state is that it’s the state of mind you must enter on your way to learning, healing, growing, and falling in love.
Losing Access to the Feelings of Love
Most people never understand how they can love someone so strongly, only to seemingly overnight lose this feeling. It seems love ends like love begins. Or does it?
In truth, love is indestructible. Love never dies. So why are we so sure it does die? Because human beings cannot tell the difference between falling out of love ending and losing access to the love we once felt. Can you see the difference?
Two Certain Minds Create a Total Disconnection
The third state of mind is known by many names as well. It is the state of mind we all spent the most time from age seven on. Theorists call it the unconscious. Mothers and lovers call it being shut down. But regardless of what you call it, it’s the only state of mind in which you cannot learn, feel love, grow, and heal wounds.
The upside to being in this state of mind is that while you’re in it, you cannot get wounded, unless of course you experience a significant trauma. Significant traumas throw you into the conscious state of mind. Moreover, this is the only state of mind in which you cannot get wounded. Thus the upside to being in this state of mind is that you can use it to protect yourself whenever you’re in an unsafe environment.
Being in the state of mind also relieves the suffering of reliving wounds better than any drugs. Logic and feelings are mutually exclusive mental states. Of course, this relief comes at a high price—we also cannot feel love in this state. Moreover, the more time we spend in this state, the more we argue, and the less alive we feel.
Of course, the most important thing to know about the unconscious state of mind is that you cannot connect to others in this state, and this holds true no matter how hard you try. This means each time you feel certain, you will feel separate and apart from others, even when the thing you’re certain of is literally true.
The Five Steps as Applied to Having a Loving Relationship
The same five steps I told you about in the articles on making changes apply to learning to love, healing your wounds, and personal growth in general. Of course the biggest growth we could ever accomplish is the learn to love more.