Monday, April 15, 2013
In the beginning, when love is new, romance, courting and conquest are aphrodisiacs, stimulants that increase our appetite for sexual union. Eventually the chase ends, hearts are won, and lifetime pledges are made. The happy couple says “I do,” strolls off into the sunset together, destined to be lovers forever.
So what happens? The newness fades, the passion flees. Where does it go? Does it get mortgaged along with the house? Disposed with the diapers?
We desire even more than the wonderful climax of sexual release. We crave a connection with our partner’s soul. We ache to embrace a love that lights up our eyes, that enlivens our very being.
A Chinese saying tells us that “young love is from earth; mature love from heaven.” Could it be that our bodies are trying to tell us something as they slow down and cool off? Could it be that it is not our biology which needs assistance, but our spiritual self?
If we look at relationships from a perspective of the Chinese five-element system, we can gain some insight and direction. In this ancient understanding of the cosmos, the elements that describe all the phases of creation are wood, fire, earth, metal and water. Each influences the next, in a nourishing cycle of harmonious development.
Wood is represented by the flexibility and rapid growth of bamboo. When love is first born, it too grows rapidly. Its season is Spring, a time when plants sprout new life and blossom profusely. There is tender excitement, exploration and discovery. As the day brightens from dawn to noon, relationship proceeds to the next phase, which is fire. Wood provides fuel for fire.