To my mind there are four groups of people in everyone's life:
- Karmic relationships
I have many acquaintances, fewer friends, and a handful of interesting karmic relationships on the go at present. And while I don't have to define what an acquaintance is, there is a distinct difference between friends, and people I'm exchanging karma with.
Friends are easy. They come and they go; and though some of them may also fall into the karmic relationship group, many do not. They are in our lives because we share a few things in common and we enjoy being in their company. There's an easy give and take that defines the relationship and very little drama.
Karmic relationships are the opposite because these are the relationships that hold the power to give us the greatest joy, or the most soul depleting heartache; and sometimes a little of both. Pretty much, if you are in love with someone, at odds with someone, or have strong emotional ties/feelings/angst/etc with someone, chances are good that the two of you are swapping karma.
Another hallmark of a karmic relationship is that these are the people we remember meeting with great clarity. To this day, I can transport myself back to the evening when I first met my husband. I remember what he was wearing, how I felt, and what I saw in his eyes. Although I had no way of knowing at the time, something about our meeting told me this was going to be interesting.
And it was. And it has been.
Conversely, I can also recall the day I met one of the most difficult people I have ever known; right down to the last detail. Once again, I can situate myself there in an instant and once again, the distinct feeling that this was going to be interesting.
Because I've never been one to keep my spiritual beliefs under wraps, those who know me understand I'm a Zen, Christian, Jewish, Buddhist, Muslim with a little new age whaterism thrown in just because. In other words, I have never been a person who believes there is only one path to God because in the immortal words of Carlos Castaneda “Anything is one of a million paths. Therefore you must always keep in mind that a path is only a path..."
Keeping that in mind, my path of spirituality has always included the concept of reincarnation; the notion that we have lived many lives and that the very essence of our soul's being is to learn and grow in order to find compassion. In order to become love.
That said, it makes sense that the most important relationships in our lives aren't always easy because it is often from the places of the greatest discomfort that the most learning occurs. And in the very best of karmic relationships; in marriages or partnerships, families, or with close soul ties, there is often a little of both.
This is all good news because it teaches us is there are gifts to be found in even the darkest relationships. With this understanding it becomes easier to find our compassion. With this understanding it becomes easier to let go of anger and despair and with free hands grab the brass ring of happiness which has always been, and always will be, Love.
I'm probably going to write more about this topic in the month's to come but for now I'll leave you to mull this one over. Regardless of our spiritual beliefs, there are many ways to frame the idea that our most important relationships have the power to hinder or heal us. At the end of the day, it's the way we view the people in our lives that will determine if our path is one of compassion or not.
"Does this path have a heart? All paths are the same: they lead nowhere. They are paths going through the bush, or into the bush. In my own life I could say I have traversed long long paths, but I am not anywhere. Does this path have a heart? If it does, the path is good; if it doesn't, it is of no use. Both paths lead nowhere; but one has a heart, the other doesn't. One makes for a joyful journey; as long as you follow it, you are one with it. The other will make you curse your life. One makes you strong; the other weakens you."
- Carlos Castaneda
Until next time everyone!
Lyndsay Wells is a professional trainer, writer, and program developer with a passion for food and cooking. She is an award winning recipe developer, and a website ambassador for Kraft Foods Canada. Lyndsay believes cooking should be approachable and easy and has great tips and ideas for putting together sophisticated looking dishes that cooks of all levels can accomplish.
Visit her on her blogs, The Kitchen Witch, Just. That. Fabulous. or on her YouTube Channel, CHARMED With The Kitchen Witch.