One of the false expectations with which couples approach marriage is the fond belief that they will forever be all in all to each other.
I can’t imagine any two people being that to each other-unless, perhaps, they are exceptionally stupid! No one person can ever help you to learn all your lessons in life.
No one person can fulfil your every need. No one, that is, but yourself.
For all the fulfilment you have ever sought awaits you within. But that kind of fulfillment is never personal.
One purpose of marriage is to expand one’s identity ever outward, from the ego to infinity. The ocean of cosmic awareness, which is God, has projected little waves of itself to become the myriad manifestations of worlds, atoms, rivers, other people, you, and me.
We seem separate from that great reality only as long as we concentrate on our own separateness from it, and from one another — even as the wave appears separate only as long as we concentrate on it, rather than on the vast ocean of which it is a part.
To fix this image clearly in your mind, imagine the wave on the ocean to be endowed with a personality; and imagine, further, that in concentrating on its own separate and special reality it decides that its own, alone of all realities in the universe, is meaningful to it.
Think of the wave therefore protruding itself further from the ocean in an effort to dominate all the surrounding waves. In so doing it sets itself in conflict with other waves; for these, too, similarly inflated with their own self-importance, want to dominate one another.
As conflict builds among the many self-seeking waves, pain, fear, and suffering develop also.
Swami Kriyananda is a living disciple of Paramhamsa Yogananda. He is also the founder of Ananda Sangha with nine communities around the world.