“Love the Lord thy God with all your heart, mind and body and love your neighbor as yourself…” as shared by Jesus is a simple yet incomprehensibly powerful life principle.
When you love God with all your heart, mind and body, then your choices will consider and regard “good”: “higher Good”, “greater Good” or “good” in general… however, “good” can be relative; therefore, the genius in the second part. When you love your neighbor as yourself, “good” is put into an easily related perspective.
In other words, it is unlikely that you wish harm or evil upon yourself; therefore, when you find yourself in a moment of choice, stop, consider how and what you would want for yourself if and when you find yourself in the other person’s shoes. Then, act based on what you would want. Remember the timeless Golden Rule:
“Do unto others
as you would have them do unto you.”
Remembering and applying the Golden Rule to Jesus’ instructions is, however, usually, not enough.
Because what is important to me, may or may not be important to you. Truly loving your neighbor as your self would include taking the time to understand and comprehend the other person’s values when making your choices.
Truly loving another as yourself means you make and take the time to learn, know and act according to the other person’s values. This is especially important in the most intimate of all relationships – your soul mate.
A major relationship pitfall is treating your soul mate as you want to be treated or expecting them to psychically or naturally know what you want or need. Opposites attract and that is never more evident than between soul mates. This does not have to mean fatal attraction when you are aware and plan to respect your differences. For example, a dialogue that includes:
· I know I am loved when you…
· I really enjoy it when you do ___ …
· It is really important to me that my soul mate ___ …
Realistically, do not be surprised if you or your soul mate are unaware of a personal value system. Consequently, it would be a very good idea to preface your dialogue with a discovery exercise. Ask yourself and your soul mate the following questions:
· What’s most important to me about a soul mate relationship?
· What’s most important to me about our conversations?
· What’s most important to me about our freedom?
· What’s most important to me about our togetherness?
· What’s most important to me about our disagreements?
· What’s most important to me about our finances and money?
· What’s most important to me about our residence?
· What’s most important to me about our careers?
· What’s most important to me about our relationships with friends, family, children… separately and as a couple?
· What’s most important to me about being a parent and raising children?
· What’s most important to me about our religion?
· What’s most important to me about holidays?
· What’s most important to me about _____?
Most of us make a lot of assumptions when entering soul mate relationships; discovering the differences, reactively, often become the bricks that build walls that, over time, can become insurmountable. This exercise and dialogue minimize, eliminate or create the opportunity to plan for the inevitable differences that are a part of every significant human relationship.
I pray that this does not overwhelm you. I promise, if you will take the time to know your value system and to learn your soul mate’s value system then work together proactively to reconcile the inevitable differences and commit to love your soul mate as yourself, comprehending what is important to them from this day forward; then, not only will your life be more harmonious but your chances of a successful soul mate relationship are significantly improved. Another version of the Golden Rule that will help you remember and apply this concept is:
“Do unto others
as they would have you do unto them.”
© jan gentleman-ingersoll Eastern Shepherd, Inc. 2010