People who rely on others are going to find themselves in a state of limbo at one point or another. This is because people are unpredictable, and people need solid foundations to hold them in balance or “orbit”.
Relating to another means finding familiarity with them, and being able to see things from their perspective. It means communication comes easily, and intimacy takes the path of least resistance. Of course, this sounds wonderful, but if there is no solid bedrock of granite to hold the two up, the very force of gravity will pull upon them. As soon as one partner weakens, the other must harden to counter-balance. But that puts undo pressure on the other individual. Pressure can only hold before something finally gives. Relationships must not be more than a give and take. They must have a fulcrum, a focal point from which they orbit. They need to jointly commit to something larger then themselves. This “fixed point” needs to be able to endure their natural lives.
Greater intimacy, Greater emotion
When strong relationship is developed, a strong internal bond is made, which may or may not be noticed until it is stressed or ultimately severed. If the bond was deep enough, its breaking could shatter a person, and have indirect implications on those in strong relationship with that person’s life. Perhaps grief is only felt when there is a tremendous bond that has been made, and only the loss of that relationally-connected partner can awaken a gaping hole that was previously filled. What does it mean to never experience grief? How can one really understand the highs in life if he never witnesses how low life can really plunge? It is the story of humanity. There was simply just harmonious beauty in the garden until the first temptation came. And then darker skies came. Relations were severed. Wounds heal, but scars always remain, to remind us of the wound, the pain, and the purity that once was. Even the greatest experiences in life will have some subconscious feeling of longing, some greater mysterious void as a result of past scars. How far do these scars go back? How aware are we of a severed relationship in our lives? Has there ever been a relationship of such intimacy that the scare of its breaking brought great anxiety and feelings of depression?
Perhaps our longing for intimacy in relationships comes from a deeper place inside of us. Perhaps it reveals itself in different ways in different people, but a deep longing is there, even though many can dull its sensitivity with habitual actions, and regurgitated mental statements leading to superficially-established beliefs. But real intimacy has largely lost its meaning in our modern culture. It has a culturally-understood meaning of sex. And perhaps that is a part of the journey of intimacy, but a journey is more one step. The scientific synonym for intimacy would be density. Density at a planetary level (like ours), produces the gravitational field to hold all of the physical matter on our surface from floating into space. At a whole different stage, the density of our solar system’s sun has enough “intimacy” to produce a “pulling force” on nine other planets (or eight, plus a star). To carry this analogy out as far as possible, attraction is a powerful factor, to the extent that it can cause great catastrophe if not utilized gently. So balancing external features of a relationship is important, as it allows for orbit, but if the object pulling in on the one in its orbit wants it to be content, then the focal gravity-producing object must remain a “fixed point”, and keep their distance. This is where we must part ways with this analogy.
That Relational Focal Point
That lingers as the core question, ddoesn’tit? Of course, we could submit our spouse, our children, our faith, our education. These are all unpredictable. In fact, people have strength in them, so they will go farther than the others. Faith can be persuaded, and tends to lean on evidence that is both experiential and intellectual. Perhaps you see a light in the horizon of my article here, but I am going to simply say that it’s theoretical for me. It is a source of intellectual comfort, which holds my faith, and keeps me in a community of peace and wonderful people. But it has to be more than just intellectual. And it has to be more then experiential. Relationship needs to be whole and entirely immersive.