My first soulmate experience happened when I was 19 years old and it changed my life forever. I had never heard the term "soulmate" and really didn't know much about metaphysics at all. I was a Psych major at City College of San Francisco and was sitting on the lawn with friends when "she" appeared!
It wasn't just her physical beauty, to my libidinous teenage eyes she was absolutely the sexiest most stunning girl/woman I had ever seen, it was her "energy" that drew me in.
I walked over to where she was sitting on the lawn and asked if I could join her and to my amazement she said yes. Through my awkward stumbling attempts at communication, I found out that her name was Sheila and that she had just moved here from back east, Washington D.C. I think. In those days I was really anxious and self-conscious so I wasn't aware of the energy exchange going on between us, I was mostly focused on trying to impress her with my B.S.!
As we spent time together I discovered that she was a real free spirit, very independent and much more wise and mature than her 18 years. Being with her awakened in me something greater than the sexual attraction, infatuation and feelings of love that I was experiencing as we dated.
I recognized that something really big was happening, particularly when, on a lazy Saturday morning I experienced my first metaphysical "download". Of course at the time there were no personal computers so I called my experience a "thought acceleration".
I was laying in bed, half asleep, still lost in a slow reverie of thoughts like a trickle of water flowing over a dam when all of a sudden the dam broke open and there was a great onrush of images, thoughts and feelings that made me sit upright in my bed.
In a split second, it was as if an entire library of metaphysical knowledge exploded in my head along with an array of extrasensory abilities (which I discovered soon after).
This was my first spiritual awakening, an initiatory experience brought about by the catalytic power of connecting with the first of many "soulmates."
Something else happened with this first soulmate experience, I messed up the relationship by being more of a cellmate than a soulmate. My emotional neediness and insistence on her recognizing my brilliant insights as truth drove her away. I was blind to my own need to control the form of the relationship and I paid the price.
This great loss, drove me to find out what went wrong and after many years of workshops, therapists, gurus and quite a few soulmates I came to see how my inner cellmate was sabotaging my relationships, unconsciously trying to control the form and direction of the relationship.
Fortunately for me over the years I have learned to control less and relate more!
If you are interested in learning how to recognize and heal your inner cellmate and how to expand and nurture your soulmate qualities take the cellmate quiz and then read the soulmate solution.
You may be a cellmate if:
You think that a Grand Canyon trail ride gathering is a place where you can compulsively "share your truth" and turn everyone into your own personal emotional pack mule.
You've read a lot of books and think that you are a stand for "healthy relationships" but are actually standing on the event horizon of a black hole of emotional neediness, ready to suck the life out of anyone who get near you.
You need to give out more relationship advice than Oprah at a co-dependents anonymous convention.
You have a secret fantasy to be Oprah at a co-dependents anonymous convention.
You think that agreeing to disagree is the best way to handle any interpersonal confrontation... even armed robbery!
You want more security in a relationship than a prison guard in the Secured Housing Unit.
Your definition of a committed relationship is: When my partner does something that pushes my buttons, instead of having to feel my own pain I get them to change their behavior (good luck with this one!)
If you even paused for a moment at any of the above statements read on.
The Soulmate Solution
So what really is the difference between a soulmate and a cellmate? In many spiritual traditions the metaphor of prison is used to describe the human condition. In essence we all live to some degree as prisoners of our own misperceptions and beliefs. Basically the lies we tell ourselves form the bars of our prison and because we can't see our own misperceptions these become our blind spots. We can't see the bars and so we don't know that we are in prison.
It's these blind spots that we have that cause most of the problems and misunderstandings in our romantic relationships. But blind spots are not all bad and do provide a kind of psychological security blanket. And if we find someone with compatible misperceptions, life's not so bad. But we still are "cellmates" living in our common perceptual prison, unconsciously supporting each other's binding misperceptions.
A soulmate relationship is quite different. A soulmate relationship is a real spiritual partnership, where each one ardently supports the liberation of the other. It's a conspiracy to help one another to breakout of the prison of misperception. This is accomplished by gently helping each other to see into the blind spots that imprison us.
This may sound very complicated given that so many people have spent years in therapy and are still struggling with their issues. The actual process of mutual liberation is quite simple: in order to find a soulmate, you must become a soulmate. To be in a spiritual partnership you have to learn how to practice spiritual partnership.
Here is how you can learn how to become a soulmate by practicing spiritual partnership:
Practicing Radical Acceptance of All Parts of Self
We can only love and accept another person to the extent that we love and accept ourselves. We can learn to radically accept ourselves by recognizing, accepting and releasing negative thoughts and feeling about ourselves.
Listening with Compassion
Most of us listen, thinking about what we are going to say next, judging the other person or sometimes just plain spacing out. Listening with compassion is an inclusive kind of listening, in that it includes the types of listening mentioned above and a new kind of listening that involves the Heart, mind and body. Listening with compassion allows others to really feel heard and seen.
Speaking from the Heart
How many of us really tell the truth? We get so caught up in our stories that it's sometimes hard to tell our fantasies from what's real for us. Speaking from the Heart is a way of saying what's true for us without a lot of explanation or intellectual embellishment. It becomes very natural for us to speak from the Heart when we are speaking to a person or a group that is listening with compassion.
Letting go of Defensiveness
Our defensiveness is what blocks our ability to be intimate with others. Letting go of our armoring is one of the most powerful ways to enhance any relationship. When we allow ourselves to become open and vulnerable, we signal that we are safe to be with.
Becoming Emotionally Responsible
Life is very challenging and sometimes when things seem to go wrong, we can get pretty darn upset! Being emotionally responsible means that when we are upset, we don't take our pain out on others. But sometimes we just lose it, and at those times we need to apologize quickly and forgive ourselves for being human.
These practices may seem difficult at first, because we haven't been taught how to do them. You learn these behaviors by actually practicing them with others, especially with those who are a little more experienced than you are.
I wish you well in your soulful journey, my fellow soulmate!
My first Soulmate experience happened when I was 19 years old. We didn’t ride of into the sunset together, but our connection started me on my spiritual path.