What excites me in every workshop we conduct is the prospect of new learning from our audience. Last Sunday was no different from that intention. As Claire and I shared our insights about Beyond Romance workshop, we are equally rewarded by more insights that we can also share in our future workshops. First of the series was Topic 1, The Problem of Love. Here, we shared the problem as myths that have been causing us to misunderstood Love. In a nutshell, this problem is understandable in the lens that discern thin lines.
There is a thin line between two major and acceptable perspectives, realities, truths, facts, paradigms or worldviews. But basically, this thin line, like an unmarked glass in a middle of a certain space, may fool us as if there is no barrier. Without knowing that there is a glass, we might assume that we can walk through that space. It seems that such space has no boundaries because the very boundary that separates is invisible and transparent. In the same manner, Love and Romance, as we have discussed in previous articles, are both separated by a delicate thin line. They are both in the same space of truth of human experience, yet they are still separated by this unseen boundary, which distinguishes how different they are with each other.
Love and Romance are different because Love is the all encompassing, totally indescribable and infinite inclusive beingness, and Romance serves just one among many pathways of Love’s expression. However, they can be easily mistaken for each other because of the beauty they both possess, only the former in unchanging, while the other is subject to change. Using Love and Romance as a basis, there is a new thin line I have discovered, thanks to one participant who shared her personal take on Romance. She admitted that her life is a romantic one, and she enjoys being romantic as well. I perfectly see that there is nothing wrong to it, and a new insight dawned on me.
Love becomes clearer as we shift to seeing the romance of life in a wiser way.
Between Romantic and Romanticizing
Romanticizing is about assuming that every person, thing or situation is subject to three conditions: 1) they will not change; 2) they are always perfect based on our sense of perfection; and 3) they are the only right one to be pursued. Romanticizing is practically a dangerous perspective since every person, thing or situation is always subject to three truths: 1) they all change; 2) they are imperfect based on many patterns of perfection; and 3) they are just one among many to be pursued. By realizing these truths, a romanticized person, thing or situation may soon to disappoint, frustrate and disturb us, and by all means we do things to control them or make them perfect, or pursue them as the only way to experience life.
In contrast, being Romantic is enjoying the sweetness and beauty of life in simple and elegant ways. Seeing every person, thing or situation romantically is actually a humble way of accepting and acknowledging their changing, imperfect and unique nature. A romantic attitude is a graceful way of embracing whatever is at hand as a gift of the moment. And this is why people who seem to be romantic never lacks the sight to see the beauty in every person, thing or situation, however awful and disappointing it may appear to others.
The thin line between Romantic and Romanticizing is very obvious: Anything or anyone is “romantic” because it is a natural characteristic. A baby is considered romantic because he or she exudes effortlessly the magic of life in multiple ways: the smile, giggles, gentleness, tenderness, playfulness, etc. The same goes for that which we consider beautiful and wonderful. Romanticizing is an attempt to force, either mentally or physically, anyone or anything into having what it takes to be likable and beautiful. When it does not meet that intention, we try to change it or eventually reject it.
Romantic and Romanticizing are words with the same origin, and as words they are essentially synonymous in many ways. Both words describe perfection, wonder, and inspiration, all of which are attached to a particular person, thing or situation. These words both are keys to describe a well-lived, sensual life that seduces us to imagination and realizations. In a simple note, they are words to describe how Love unfolds. Seeing the thin line between them is a profound wisdom of appreciating ourselves, others and all there is. Love becomes clearer as we shift to seeing the romance of life in a wiser way.
Beyond Romance workshop Topic 1: The Problem of Love was held on August 27/28, 2011 at ISIS International , Quezon City. Topic 2: Transforming Romantic Emotions will be held on September 4, 1pm, at the same venue. For details, contact Ishilta at 0915 295 2826 or visit this Facebook page.