By Mystic Life
I have learned that polyamory can be used to dissolve the ego, or enhance it. Similar to how nuclear technology can be used to either power a city or destroy it, the poly path can be utilized to bring us closer to peace, or create endless suffering through multiple attachments. In other words, we can let go of controlling others, or we can create multiple relationships in which we are dependent upon the actions of our lovers to feel good about ourselves.
When I first began my polyamorous journey, it felt incredibly liberating to be free of the constraints of monogamy, which had never worked very well for me. As a freshly-minted rebel I wanted everyone to be polyamorous, and would denounce the “evils” of possession and control inherent in monogamous and polyfidelitous relationships. This came largely from my ego since my insecure mind needed to convince others to be as I wanted them to be in order to feel more secure (and because I wanted to have more potential partners). It was ultimately an endeavor of needy proselytizing.
Years later, I then explored polyfidelity myself. As is often the case with judgments, the universe seems to give us the opportunity to become what we judge so that we may develop empathy. Over the course of seven years of polyfidelity, I learned to set aside my judgments of both polyfidelitous and monogamous relationships. My perception matured, and I came to understand that every form of love we experience is always customized for the lessons we need at that time. As our lessons change, the form of love to which we feel drawn to explore will most likely change as well.
Recently, this desire to change once again arose in my life. One morning, I awoke after about four hours of sleep, and receptively listened to my inner guidance for about two hours. I realized that it was time to let go of attachment to what form love would take in my life, and release my interest in polyfidelity. I understood that to enhance my spiritual lessons, I had to cease my quest for something secure because ultimately there is nothing we can grasp in life without creating suffering.
Of course, either monogamy or polyfidelity may occur without clinging. Such forms of love can be arrangements that simply work for those who are involved without limitations being placed upon others. Yet what I realized during my recent revelation is that for myself, the desire for a secure form of love was keeping me in a place of subtle discomfort. I knew that my challenge was to completely release control of what others (and myself) might choose to do in the realm of intimacy. In life, fears and uncertainty can cause us to crave something to hold on to, to give us the illusion of predictability. In the realm of intimacy, however, this is what often destroys love. So to diminish my ego as much as possible, I realized it was time to return to my original open approach to polyamory, but without the judgment or superior attitude I once held.
Part of my draw to polyfidelity, albeit mostly unconscious, was to limit my contact with men. Growing up without compassionate male role models, as well as having faced challenges with metamours (partners’ partners) during my earlier poly experiences, made it tempting to desire a triad that would have an imaginary protective boundary around it. However, part of my recent inner guidance was that the world will not heal without a diminished degree of competition in the realm of unhealthy yang dynamics, and that vulnerability and emotional healing with metamours could be viewed as an opportunity as opposed to a burden.
Additionally, although this may change in the future, I don’t see myself as desiring a “primary” partner. I once heard a perspective from the spiritual teacher Mellon-Thomas Benedict, a man who had died for a short period of time, but came back to life with many insights. In essence, he stated that we are our own soulmate, and those we love throughout our life are “playmates” from whom we learn lessons in order to better know who we are.
I certainly can understand the desire to find “the one.” Throughout our lives we’ve been bombarded with images and stories in the media which convey that this is the only real endeavor that can possibly bring comfort. Yet I sense that I have a different purpose. My deepest satisfaction comes from learning to be at peace with whatever form life is taking. If I’m alone, I can be content. If I have one lover, I can allow her to be “one, in this moment” without needing her to be “one, eternally.” And if I have more than one lover, I don’t need to rate them in terms of importance. I can love them differently, yet equally, similar to how a conscious parent with two children does not need to have a “primary” and “secondary” child.
I am letting go of my attachment to form, and there is a deep feeling of trust beneath this release. I’ve spent a great deal of time by myself for nearly two years, becoming more comfortable in my own skin, and I believe this has helped me form a launching pad from which I can venture into the unknown spaciousness of love. As many of us who have been guided to polyamory know on some level, letting go of society’s rigid rules about what love must look like can create an entirely new way of being on Earth.
Is our inability to have anyone or anything to “hold on to” scary sometimes? Absolutely…until there is a complete surrender to life.
My husband has recently expressed an interest in poly amory. I have had fears of betrayal and so much jealousy for so long. I know it is my main lesson in this life. I just don’t know how to move through it. I want to be free of this malady desperately. I know none of this is real. I know all of this “reality” is an illusion to help me work out my problems. I can’t get out of my human head. I want to fix this. Please do you have any suggestions? I feel really scared that I’m not going to be able to do it and I will suffer this fate again next time. Do these kinds of relationships work? Has a jealous, fearful person ever gotten over it?
Hi Mrs. C,
I’m glad you enjoyed the article. I think that your comment shows a great deal of awareness regarding your lessons. The fact that you take responsibility for your feelings is a huge first step. Remember that language is powerful so instead of saying “I can’t get out of my human head.” you can say, “So far, I’ve been caught in my fears, but I’m determined to overcome my fears.” Don’t put too much pressure on yourself. The stress of “time” doesn’t help us transcend our fears. Keep in mind that the universe never gives us more than we can handle. Yes, these relationships can work, and may jealous fearful people have transcended their insecurities. It all begins with self-love and non-attachment. As long as you fear “not making it” or “losing him” or any other outcome, you will suffer. Surrender to what is, and recognize that whatever changes you go through will more likley be gradual than abrupt, so be gentle with yourself during the process. If you’d like more feedback you can contact me through the email listed at my site http://www.SpiritualPolyamory.com
So, my partner of one year and I decided to open up our relationship, because of my own interest outside the relationship. I’ve never been comfortable with being open, but it’s actually how my partner works best. I thought it would be fine, but it’s actually been rather difficult. She is quite the advanced being: totally ok without any limits and complete freedom. I, on the other hand, have had many fears come up around loss, insecurity, judgement. It helps that I have someone i’m seeing too, but I still notice such a strong attachment to my partner. i’m all about losing attachment and have had to fight that with this particular person 2-3 times now. does it get easier? we just opened the relationship 3 weeks ago and i’ve been soooo up and down. some days totally fine and content….others in a crazy jealous controlling space.
thank you for your time.
Keep in mind that 3 weeks is very early on into an open relationship. With work, it does get easier. If you find you’ve bitten off more than you can chew you may want to renegotiate the terms of your agreement. Ultimately, if you want to keep walking through the fire of your fears, it will be helpful to witness your emotions that arise without acting upon them. As you become used to the idea that you do not own your partner, you will become less reactive. When people begin their relationship as monogamous it is generally more difficult to transition to polyamory than if they began as poly. The reason for this is that in monogamy you form a bond that makes assumptions (which are strongly reinforced by society) that you own the other person’s body. So you have to undo that learning. Many people don’t recognize that they don’t own their partner’s sexuality until the relationship is over. Then it makes sense. But to transmute your relationship to your partner without ending it means changing your beliefs about love from an old paradigm concept of possession to a new paradigm belief of unconditional appreciation while becoming grounded in the knowledge that you are whole and will be fine whatever happens (you ultimately can’t control or micromanage what will unfold so you best let go whether you’re poly or monogamous). You may also want to read my book, “Spiritual Polyamory” for further ideas on transitioning to this new way of being. Again, you’re very early on in this journey so be patient with yourself as you move into this form of love. It will show you where you need work…that’s why I perceive it as a style of loving that enhances one’s spiritual growth.
Thank you so much. pretty much exactly what I needed to hear. I’m beginning to understand my partner as her own sexual and emotional being…..instead of someone that needs to be something ‘for’ me….or ‘in relation’ to me. I can feel the emotions arising out of the transition from old to new. it can definitely be difficult and I may need to scale things back a bit to allow myself some peace and time away from fear to work on my own expectations, but i look forward to the outcome in relation to love. your words have been already so helpful. i look forward to reading your book.
You’re welcome, James…I’m glad the words resonated. You seem self-aware, vulnerable & committed to your growth…all great traits for the poly path.
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