One of the fundamental tenets of a spiritual path, along with personal practices, is the need to keep the company of other seekers. Fellow seekers understand and can reflect on the unique challenges you face in your discipline, in understanding the philosophy of your path, and in meeting obstacles that arise. They also reinforce the sweetness, the positive force that supports your sadhana. As much as we have individual karmas and sovereign will, we are also social creatures; we need to see our reflection in others to feel a resonance with our own joys, fears, truths, and mysteries, and to receive support and have connection. Satsang with other students in the same tradition is essential support for navigating complexities that confront us.

If you are cultivating marriage sadhana, then you need to keep the company of other couples who are also grappling with the intricacies of relationship: irreconcilable differences, navigating the tension between polarities, and seeking to penetrate the superficial events and challenges to find the deepest meaning, power, and fulfillment in marriage. Because there is no manual for doing this, accessing the collective wisdom that lives within similarly-oriented couples is crucial for you to thrive and grow. Whether you gather formally every month, have dinner occasionally, go on walks together, or go on retreats as a group, cultivate those connections deliberately and consciously.

It is also essential that as an individual you have someone who is also a husband or wife as a confidante. You need to have a safe place to express frustrations, fears and failures with someone who will hear you, who can both understand the complexities of married life, and who will keep your words in confidence. When you speak your most delicate feelings – no matter how dark, confused, or delicate – and when you feel that you have been completely heard, something powerful happens: your tension is reduced, you gain clarity, you perceive new possibilities, and you feel met. You can proceed with more ease and confidence.

Next essay: Take Care of Your Bodies

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