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3 Ways your spouse can help you become a zen master

You don’t need to meditate in a Turkish cave, study ancient scrolls or perform 16 straight hours of yoga in India. The act of marriage is the ultimate spiritual practice. 

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Elizabeth Gilbert traveled halfway around the world to find Ketut, a wise Balinese medicine man in her book Eat, Pray, Love. Luke Skywalker flew across the galaxy and landed his X-wing Starfighter in a swamp before finding Yoda in Star Wars. Could your wise Yoda be sitting on the couch, beer in lap, with his hand down his pants and his eyes glued to the game? Is your spouse your greatest spiritual teacher?

In a word: yes.

1. To live means to suffer

This Buddhist statement expresses the concept that because our fragile physical bodies inhabit the material world, pain is unavoidable. Pain — both physical and emotional — is a part of life. Loving others opens us to a windfall of potential pain — rejection, disappointment, fear or loss — especially when you have invested a lifetime with someone. There is an escape hatch to suffering and we can make it better.

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2. The origin of suffering is attachment

Attachment fosters suffering. It is easy to understand that concept when connecting attachments to physical objects, from your Prada handbag to your cell phone (OK, we are all attached to our cell phones). Attachment to resentment and anger is even more harmful when it comes to our spouse. That time he ruined your birthday? When you express your feelings and he accuses you of harping? When he doesn’t see things your way? What is marriage if not the act of releasing? The only way to find inner peace is to forgive past transgressions. To forgive he who leaves the toilet seat up is next to holiness.

3. Presence and awareness

You have forgiven, truly forgiven, your spouse for intentional or non-intentional squabbles, fights and resentments. Now, you are ready to be present with them. Presence and awareness provides space for discovery. And discovery is what keeps a marriage fresh. You see a funny and engaging new habit. He senses your openness and responds in turn. Before you know it, the two of you are giggling and making out at inappropriate places.

4. The natural state of oneness

Everything is connected. We are all part of the universal energy. This means that to love your spouse — or anyone for that matter — is to love yourself. Every warm hug, passionate kiss and loving embrace for him is a yummy hug, sweet kiss and snuggling embrace for you.

5. Physical transcendence

Transcendence is the goal of many spiritual practices. Sex is a doorway to the spiritual and supernatural; yet, few Westerners view it as such. Bodies wrapped, tangled limbs, sweaty skin, souls unite. You climax and suddenly your body exceeds all physical limitations. Open the door to transcendence on any morning or night of the week with your own personal Yoda. You’ll be so happy you did.

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Sasha Graham read tarot professionally for over a decade in New York City. She is the author of Tarot Diva, 365 Tarot Spreads and 365 Tarot Spells. Visit her site, Sasha Graham, for tips on filling your life with magic.

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