I’ve been doing a lot of thinking about purpose this year.
As an entrepreneur this is nothing new to me. In business they always tell you it’s important to find your why. The idea is that to truly be successful in business you need to be coming from a place of passion.
But this idea relates to more than just business. It relates to you as a person.
Why are you here?
Have you ever thought about that?
What is your why? What is really worth living for?
I’ve struggled with this question for many years. I just didn’t see a point to it all.
I was a workaholic and buried myself in business and for a few years I thought I knew my why.
I was passionate about learning technology and making it do amazing things through software development. I worked 60-80 hour work weeks and really loved what I did.
But even during all this creative time there was an emptiness, a lack of fulfillment.
What I discovered then is all that activity and supposed passion was really a smoke screen. It was keeping me busy so I didn’t really have to face myself and figure out why I’m here.
All during this period I never really felt at home anywhere.
I moved many times but never settled into any place I lived.
I always felt homeless.
Like I existed to make the world work so that other people who knew how to live could enjoy it.
I hadn’t found my why.
You might be thinking, what does this have to do with relationships? Stay with me.
All this changed for me in 2010.
At that point a crisis occurred in my life. One that often occurs in people’s lives.
I was in a relationship of many years where a breakup had become imminent.
This hit me like a two-by-four to the head
It was like I woke up from a slumber I had been in my entire life.
It wasn’t that I was under any illusions the relationship was romantically connective.
If you read my first blog post What Is Romantic Love? you know I believe romantic love includes both sexual fulfillment and emotional connection.
This relationship had neither.
And I take a lot of credit for this. I was just a disconnected soul.
The lostness and lack of purpose I felt all those years was very much impactive of what was going on (or rather not going on) in that relationship.
From day one I didn’t know how to connect and I left us in a relationship desert.
This wasn’t something I meant to do.
I had deep emotional wounds I didn’t know how to address.
Didn’t even understand needed addressing.
So my crisis point had arrived. It was time to figure myself out and finally get to the bottom of my sense of homelessness.
My inability to connect.
I’m going to have a lot more to say about what I went through at that time in future posts, as well as what I learned about myself.
The main thing I want to emphasize here is purpose.
It was this crisis that began my journey into a new world, a world that is finally bringing me home.
I’ve finally found my why, what I believe is really worth living for. I want to share it with you in case what I’ve learned can help you too.
Because in many ways I think my why might just be your why too.
Does that sound silly?
After all you’re an individual right? You’re unique.
How could my why be yours too? Well here’s the thing.
There are many ways in which we are all unique. That’s true. But there is another sense in which we’re all the same. We are all human beings. We share a common humanity.
And while you can look across all cultures and see all sorts of variations, you can also see some very common things.
The central thing that joins us all together is love.
The desire and need to love and be loved.
Of course love takes many forms.
We love our fellow man. We love our friends. We love our extended family. We love our children.
But central to all these other loves is romantic love.
If romantic love did not exist and draw us together, none of these other loves would exist.
Okay sure people don’t need to love each other to procreate. I get it. But if nobody loved, procreation would just create a complete mess.
I agree what we often see is a bit of a mess. But when humanity is functioning well, love is at the core, and romantic love is at the center of that core.
I believe romantic love is the key to finding your purpose. I believe it is your purpose.
It definitely is my purpose and I want to encourage you to consider whether it might just be your purpose too.
Even if you haven’t recognized it yet…
I believe there is nothing more important and we are out of our minds chasing everything else first.
I want to make one qualifying remark here though.
When I say I believe romantic love is my purpose, your purpose, I mean it is our purpose on a human level.
I don’t know what spiritual path you’re on or whether you consider yourself spiritual at all, but ultimately if there is a God then I take it as a no brainer that in some sense glorifying God and aligning ourselves with God is our ultimate purpose.
But if there is a God who made mankind, I also take it as obvious that romantic love is central to God’s purpose for us and glorifying God must mean fulfilling the purpose he made us for too.
Many spiritual traditions see the love of man and woman to be central to spirituality. I think that makes total sense and I’ll expand on this thought in future posts as well.
So please don’t misunderstand me to be deprioritizing God or spirituality here. I believe when we love each other we see God’s reflection.
I place the love of God above all human loves.
Okay? Just wanted to be clear about this.
But on a human level I have come to believe that romantic love is my purpose. There is no higher love I can experience on this plane.
There is nothing more important to me. I believe I am chasing wind if I don’t put this first.
So what does this mean for living? How do I see this working out in my daily life?
You will need to decide how this translates for you but I want to share how it translates for me. I’m hoping I might be able to convince you to join me on my path.
Having discovered my purpose to be romantic love, my goal is to create a lifestyle in which making love is central, and everything else flows from that.
Notice I did not say “having sex.” Please read my first post called What Is Romantic Love? to be clear on this.
Sex without emotional connection is not romantic love. Emotional connection without sexual fulfillment is not romantic love either. Only when both are present are you experiencing romantic love as I define it.
When you have both you don’t just have sex with your partner, you make love.
I believe making love is a lifestyle.
Though emotionally connective physical intercourse is central to this, love making is as much about that kiss goodbye in the morning, that hug to greet you when you return home, or that pat on the bottom in the kitchen when you’re making dinner together.
So I want my lifestyle to be all about making love.
I believe the reason we are so fixated on everything else – our careers, our hobbies, our children and many other of the thousands of space fillers you can think of, is because we’ve lost the vision of what romantic love truly is. (I’m not saying kids are a space filler, but they should not take priority over or replace our central romantic relationships.)
It is only because we have forgotten how to make love that we spend all our time doing everything else.
If we really knew how to make love we’d be focused on doing that as much as we can.
A favorite psychologist of mine Willard Harley says when he began his lifetime practice of helping couples restore their failing relationships he asked them what they truly believed would help them reunite.
Almost without exception they said “If we were just in love again, most of the rest of our problems would be easy to solve.”
Doesn’t that make sense?
What greater motivational driver have you ever experienced in your life than how you felt when you were truly in love?
When you’re in that state nothing else seems to matter. Your problems are small.
Even all those little things about your partner don’t really bother you, because your love for him or her causes you not to notice these faults.
And you want to make love all the time. What we really need in our lives is love.
Deep, rich, romantic love.
That is our purpose, to love and be loved.
Barry Long is a tantric master I’ve enjoyed reading.
I’m more of a western thinker so I don’t buy into his whole program, but I find a lot of what he says about making love makes sense.
In his book Making Love: Sexual Love the Divine Way, he tells a myth about humanity.
He says in the beginning we knew how to make love and that’s what we spent most of our time doing.
As time moved on though, we started to forget how to make love, so we started saying “I love you.” Words replaced physical love making and distance began to grow between us.
Eventually things got so bad that we even stopped doing that. At this point we created “the world.”
Long distinguishes “the world” from the planet.
The planet is the trees. The rocks. The mountains. Us. Nature in its fullness.
“The world” is what man has built. The world of business, and cars, and speed boats and airplanes and all the stuff we’ve added to the planet.
All the stuff we created to keep ourselves distracted because we don’t know how to connect anymore.
Not with ourselves. Not with others. Not with our partners.
We’ve forgotten how to make love.
Personally I think the western world has gone mad. We’ve forgotten what’s truly important. What’s important is making love.
If we truly knew how to make love and spent most of our time doing so, would we really be so obsessed with everything else we fill our lives with now? Would all the conflicts we face in the world continue?
To really get what I’m saying, just do a little thought experiment.
At some time hopefully in the far future yet, you’re going to be on your death bed and thinking back on your life.
Do you really think what you’re going to regret is that you didn’t do more business deals?
Didn’t water ski more times?
Didn’t [fill in the blank with that activity you’re obsessed with]?
Don’t you think what you’ll really regret is that you didn’t spend more time with your family, with your kids, with your lovers? That you didn’t make love more?
I’m not saying you should make love and not do anything else. I’m not saying “all you need is love.”
What I wrote above is that I want to create a lifestyle where making love is central and everything else flows out of that.
In other words, I believe romantic love and making love should not be something you “tack on” to your busy life.
You shouldn’t just fit it in once the kids are in bed and you’re too exhausted to enjoy your time with your partner.
You shouldn’t leave it until no real connection is possible.
You need to make romantic love your priority.
You need to make it your purpose.
Everything else should just be what you do as an add on to this, not the other way around.
You owe this to your self. You owe this to your partner.
How would your life change if you truly put making love at the center of your lifestyle?
How would the world change if we all truly embraced romantic love as our purpose?
So what do you think? Could romantic love be your purpose?
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