I spent the past few minutes reading through the pages of a diary from 1993. My diary from when I was working as an English Teacher in the small hamlet of Hinnapita, in rural Sri Lanka, while studying at University, 200km away. I have written about those experiences in earlier posts. Those few pages spoke of the raw pain I experienced as a very naive 22 year old in love. Honestly, I don’t know if I learnt anything useful in the intervening 32 years that helped me to have successful relationships. Being single at 45 is all the proof that is needed.
However, last night, reading Eckhart Tolle’s The Power of Now, particularly the chapter on Enlightened Relationships, I might have finally learnt the crucial bit of knowledge I had been seeking all my life. To have a successful relationship, both partners have to be fully present in the here and now. Without being present, all that will happen is when the initial glow of romantic infatuation fades, they both fall back into negative thought patterns, often awakening the pain body in one or both partners, thus causing them both to suffer.
The pain body according to Tolle is where all the accumulated pain and suffering of not just our lives, but that of the entire human consciousness resides. In most people the pain body is dormant, only coming awake at certain times and going back into dormancy for a period. Still others live through their pain body their whole lives. Sometimes, a romantic partner can awaken our dormant pain body through their words or actions causing us to lash out and cause further suffering in both ourselves and the other person. It is our pain that is causing this suffering, but we perceive it to be caused by the other person, so we blame them for the pain.
I can clearly see now, during my last relationship, my pain body which had been dormant since the end of my marriage was shaken awake and was the primary cause of the pain I experienced. The only other people capable of awakening my pain body is my birth family.
Today I have come a long way, and am more present, living primarily in the here and now, and as a result, even my family can rarely cause my pain body to awaken. The more present I am, the more the pain body will disappear until it finally dissolves into nothingness.
As we stand on the cusp of a new year, that is my wish…I wish to be more present in the Now and may my pain body permanently disappear…
I wish each and everyone of you the same so that you too can be free of suffering. Much love…