In a recent training that I participated in, the internationally acclaimed Soulmate Attraction Expert announced her divorce--explaining that it is now normal for women to have an average of five consecutive "committed" relationships/marriages.
In addition to her popular "attracting your soulmate" programs, she will soon offer her mostly female audience "conscious uncoupling" seminars ... so buckle up guys.
What happened to happily ever after, devotion and humility?
If we look at this modern and post modern relationship phenomenon from an integral perspective, we see a clear evolutionary pattern: As we know from the Integral and other development models, adults have the potential to grow through multiple stages of consciousness--from egocentric to conventional, rational, and pluralistic to Integral and higher stages. At each of these stages, we see different relationship patterns.
- Egocentric couples tend to be in co-dependent and often abusive relationships that are largely based on sexual attraction and mutually compatible pathologies.
- Conformist couples tend to be in long-term conventional marriages, sanctioned and held together by social and cultural norms, as well as religious conventions.
- Rational couples often stay together as long as the relationship serves their individual professional careers and goals.
- Pluralistic couples often focus on self exploration and self fulfillment, and stay together as long as the relationship serves their inner journey.
Relationships in these first-tier stages of consciousness are based on the fulfillment of the respective deficiency needs, and couples separate when their partner no longer fulfills their needs, or if one of the partners moves to the next higher level of consciousness (until memes do us apart).
Relationships between Integral and higher couples (approx 2% of the US population) are no longer based on need fulfillment through a partner, but on Being values and a shared vision for their relationship that is larger than each individual.
So instead of saying that The Future of Love is an endless cycle of attracting a "soulmate" and (un)conscious "uncoupling", we see that relationships in first tier consciousness serve as a conveyer belt for singles and couples to evolve into second tier consciousness where sacred lifetime "Mature Monogamous"* partnerships and marriages flourish. This is further evidenced by the many western spiritual teachers and evolutionaries in second tier consciousness who are in thriving and rewarding long-term marriages that share a larger purpose.
And this is what "Integral Relationships: A Manual for Men" is all about:
To provide a vision and road map for these new "Integral" relationships that can indeed last a lifetime.
If you don't have the manual yet, you may order a signed copy at a 50% discount at www.integralrelationship.com/shop. And if you already own a copy and have not given me your feedback yet I would appreciate to hear from you.
* See Robert Augustus Masters in Transformation through Intimacy: The Journey Towards Mature Monogamy on the page before the Introduction:
"The passage from immature to mature monogamy is not just a journey of ripening intimacy with a beloved other, but also a journey into and through zones of ourselves that may be quite difficult to navigate, let alone get intimate with and integrate with the rest of our being. But however much this passage might ask of us, it gives back even more, transforming us until we are established in the unshakable love, profound passion, and radically intimate mutuality that epitomize mature monogamy. And even if we don't end up in such a relationship, our having taken the journey toward it will immeasurably benefit us in whatever we do."