Opposites Attract... But Do They Make Good Matches?
By Dr. Matthew B. James
When Ken and Stella met, they realized to their delight that they were similar spiritually and emotionally, but different physically and mentally. That turned out to be a good thing for the couple. They had enough similarities to communicate and share, but were different enough to challenge each other and keep the spark alive. Ken and Stella were married in Hawaii a year after they met. He moved from Australia to London to be with her, and they are still together three years later.
Ken and Stella met at a workshop I teach on Huna, the ancient science of consciousness and energy healing. A fourth-generation practitioner of this tradition, I have been offering workshops on Huna twice yearly since 1989.
Huna is a modern or western label given to an ancient system of healing and spiritual development still practiced in Hawaii. We believe that it may date back as far as 35,000 years and is part of the original teachings of people from a continent which no longer exists. All that remains of that land are the mountain peaks of the island chain called Hawaii.
Huna has helped me to understand my own relationship with my wife and has proven very helpful in the relationships of many others. We have all heard the old saying opposites attract, but is it true? A couple really can be too alike, and this can kill the spark. But total opposition is likely to result in disaster as well.
According to Huna tradition, people are comprised of four aspects - physical, spiritual, emotional and mental. In some aspects it is best to be similar. In others, difference keeps us growing and keeps the spark alive.
Spiritual evolution in the Huna system involves the maturing and integration of each aspect. Huna teaching helps us understand how differences and similarities in the four areas play out in our relationships.
- The Spiritual Level: On this level, it is important to have alignment with your partner. This doesn't mean you need to have the same religion, but it is helpful to share similar values and beliefs. If you are of differing religions, having similar levels of devotion to your faith, as well as agreements regarding going to services together and raising children is useful.
- The Mental Level: Here it is helpful to have some differences. By mental, I am referring only to the mind, not the emotions. Everyone has seen the couple in the restaurant who says nothing for the entire meal. He knows what she will say and vice versa, so they just don't bother. Having a partner who challenges the mind keeps us growing, and it keeps the spark alive as well.
- The Emotional Level: It can be difficult to describe feelings. They just are, so having a partner who reacts in a similar way and understands how we feel is vitally important. This is not a place for opposites. There are very few things in the world more frustrating than trying to explain how you feel and why you feel that way. Emotional understanding is a critical element of communication.
- The Physical Level: Opposition in the physical realm is part of what creates the spark. One partner (not necessarily the woman) usually carries more of the feminine energy, and the other carries more of the masculine energy. Like the poles of a battery, these differences create a flow of energy.
Of course this is the ideal. There are bound to be places where you wish you and your partner were more similar or different. In these challenging areas, you have to work around it and talk it out.
My wife Soomi and I have similar emotional reactions but different ways of processing. She likes to vent right away, but I often need to process something quietly for a while and then vent.
In the early days of our relationship, this was problematic. If she was venting, I mistakenly thought it was about me. If I was quietly scowling, she mistakenly thought it was about her. As time passed, we have learned to give each other cues to help move through the problem, release it, and go forward.
Learning about your own and your partner's makeup - mentally, physically, emotionally and spiritually - is a key to sustaining healthy bonds with others. We are fortunate that the wisdom of the ancients has been passed down through countless generations to help us enjoy spiritual health, empowerment and loving relationships.
Matthew B. James, Ph.D., international trainer, lecturer, and educator, is President of American Pacific University and the Empowerment Partnership. His work is dedicated to creating personal transformation by teaching the ancient science of consciousness and energy healing, Huna, with cutting-edge therapeutic techniques. To find out more, contact Dr. James at info@Huna.com or visit: www.huna.com.
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