You are my teacher, you are my student

All life and learning is an energy of giving and receiving. We encounter others on our path to exchange this life force. In an instant, we recognize ourselves in the other; a giving reflection of a world we need to see. This is our world that we see, a creation of our thoughts and our state of being. Let’s consider and reflect on this, for a moment.

A mindful life becomes our technique. It is a tool and a strategy to size up the present moment without judgement or cloudiness. Simply, seeing. What is it that I am, through you? What is the world, we see? What is it that we are creating together, in this moment? How am I feeling? What sensation, arises as I consider this creation, that is both you and me, and the world we inhabit, right now?

You are my teacher and my student. I stand before you to listen carefully and practice my seeing, truth. I offer you my vulnerability and my willingness to bear my soul, so that you too can consider a measure of truth, that is both me and you, together. In this way, it is a precious gift to share a life with another. It is an exchange. It is a contract, in which we decide to make our way together, even for a moment, or for as long as it takes, to come to truth and understanding.

Truth and understanding coming together gives love and meaning to life. We cannot love unless we see clearly, and we cannot see clearly unless we see ourselves in another’s image. Sometimes, contemplation through relationship is painful if we are shying away from truth. But, with trust and mindfulness, we always arrive at appreciation. Let’s consider and reflect on this, for a moment.

Appreciation, acceptance and non-judgement lead to love. This can sometimes feel good or it can feel sad and lonely, especially if love requires leaving. That is where the expression originates: If you love something set it free. Love is always letting it be, as it is. Even it that means letting go and allowing. It’s not possession and it can’t survive in a container. It’s always flowing and changing. Sometimes, we let go and sometimes, we recognize an enduring love, the type of love that returns over and over again for a welcome reprise. Not all love looks or feels the same way. It is simply what it’s meant to be, like a flower or a species; with its own pattern, color and behavior. We can see ourselves in love with all shades and all varieties. We can visit each variety in wonderment. We can stay for as long as we like, and we move on when it’s time. This is nature. Let’s consider and reflect on this, for a moment.

What do we owe the person in front of us?

We owe them nothing more than being ourselves and allowing them to take in our original nature which is made up of beauty and light. On the surface, they may see contour and shadows, the struggle and the fight. That’s all a part of the learning. We are providing sun and nutrients in our observance of the goodness inside. Our light and beauty grow exponentially when we are showered with attention. All relationship is a gift.

In the book, The Myth of Normal, Dr. Gabor Maté reminds us that isolation and loneliness cause inflammation in the body and suppresses the immune system. Trauma can make us terrified of love relationships because we are afraid of losing ourselves, our freedom, of getting hurt. We hold onto the “tyranny of the past.” We think that if we are fully ourselves in front of another, we will be punished or harmed. For this reason, love requires courage. It requires that we move ourselves into the pain, in order to discover what is hidden underneath. It requires that we practice, over and over again, innocence and vulnerability. It doesn’t mean that we are stupid and naïve. It means you expose your wounds in order to teach others how you survived, how you healed, how you carry on with life. It means you recognize the suffering in others, and listen to how they are coping and living. In this exchange, we are all teaching and learning. In this way, we explore what it means to love again.  

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