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Monogamy, Spirituality, Integrity and Joy: A Young Man Asks

Reader Question:

I’ve  been reading about the chakras and their role in living a joyful life. I’d like to know more about the sacral chakra. I need clarification about relationships. In order to have a spiritual life, is it necessary to maintain a single relationship throughout life, or can we have more than one relationship?

Monogamy Spirituality Integrity Joy poster

Nancy's Response:

I think I understand your question. By relationship, I assume you mean intimate or sexual relationships.

A spiritual life can take many forms. With regard to sexuality (governed by the second chakra), some people choose celibacy, some choose a committed, monogamous relationship, and others choose to have intimate relationships with more than one person. I don’t think any way is right or wrong, and I don’t think the chakras have much to tell us on this subject, except that sexuality is an important part of the whole person, (even if one chooses not to exercise it).

Integrity Is The Key

Speaking personally, I believe the important thing is to maintain as much integrity as possible in your relationships, particularly the close ones. That would include honesty, mutual agreement as to what the relationship is about and honoring that agreement, negotiated rather than unilateral change, true kindness, caring and respect, maintaining equality in power, taking responsibility for mistakes, looking out for the well-being of the other, constructive communication. Hard to do! Full integrity in our relationships is both a spiritual necessity and for most of us a life-long work-in-progress.

And, integrity  is an important part of the trust that must be a part of a deeply satisfying sexual relationship.

Hopping from relationship to relationship is a shallow way to live, and it’s not conducive to developing emotional and spiritual growth and depth. However, having a number of deeply felt intimate relationships over the course of a lifetime, in which each party grows and develops, and in which a high level of integrity is maintained—I don’t see why that would necessarily be a detriment to a spiritual path.

Relationships Can Be A Powerful Spiritual Teacher

That being said, intimate relationships are a powerful spiritual crucible. They’re difficult, messy, challenging—a proving-ground in which we get to test and strengthen our pretty, clean spiritual beliefs and goals. They test our mettle, help us be real, help us grow in nearly every way.

They’re too demanding to have very many of them!

The Chakras Are A Unified System

Finally, no chakra exists in isolation. The needs of the sacral chakra, which for many people include sexual expression, do not exist in isolation from the heart chakra, which desires deep, true connection and love; or from the 5th chakra, which desires truth and integrity; from the 1st chakra, which desires security; or from the 3rd chakra, which desires right exercise of power, and so on. True joy comes not from satisfying the needs of just one chakra, but from nurturing them all. And a relationship that is truly nurturing to the full development of each partner—all their chakras— takes time to build. Once again, there’s not time in one life for too many of those relationships.

So, in summary. I don’t think any particular lifestyle is “mandatory.” But integrity is.  No integrity, no real joy.

Best regards,

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