What I see around me everyday is a seemingly growing culture of ambivalence towards marriage and just commitment in general. Children are born out of wedlock, marriages end in record numbers, and the new priority is career before all else. Religion’s authority over society is weakening more and more everyday, especially with the horrendous acts perpetrated by certain members of the Catholic church. How can we take anything seriously anymore?
The truth is, the world and society at large has spent the last few decades making a mockery of what values have caused societies such as the United States and Europe to prosper. With seemingly no one to trust anymore, how can young adults trust a marriage partner? Isn’t having children selfish, since there are so many starving children? Isn’t it greedy and arrogant to ask someone to give themselves to you forever? Doesn’t it seem like a lot of work to stay with the same partner your entire life?
Yes, yes, yes!
But that’s the good thing!
The reason why I don’t feel bad about saying yes to these statements is because the alternatives ask me to not acknowledge my own life and needs. As I believe everyone is on this Earth for a purpose, what sense does it make not the fulfill that purpose? One of the most rewarding parts of life is realizing everything that happens to you, you intended. Good and bad. You can assume responsibility for an orphan child, but it is not your acts that put the child into the world, you did not intend it.
This “greediness” of marriage and acknowledgement of your own humanity is paralleled by other characteristics.
Giving your life to marriage is the ultimate gift you can give someone.
Fancy dinner our? Hah.
New BMW in the driveway? Pff.
My entire freaking life? Whoa there.
After years of reading relationship literature I realized that gifting someone in order to receive something back, be it a relationship, or a kiss, or whatever, is incredibly selfish and manipulative. I give credit to David Deangelo for first steering me in that path. The person you are gifting doesn’t even get the gratification of the gift, because underneath your smile, they know you really want something in return. How selfish!
Marriage is sacred, it is more than a “contract”. Marriage is a bond broken only by death. You can choose to either have a happy marriage or unhappy marriage. It is epic and can sometimes be scary. It is everything the postmodern world has been harping against, true, unclouded decision.
But then something strange happens. The clouds open so your worst days are not that bad. Green and yellow shades highlight your brightest days more so than ever. Sometimes it seems as if God thanks you for such a gift to another human. The gears around you seemed oiled, as if the world wants you to continue and give life to a new human. The universe just keeps on thanking you more and more as if you really did one-up it. Somewhere in my wildest dreams, I remember predicting all of this. A happy marriage, kids, life in a sunny valley, wildest dreams.
Can you forget that there may be someone else out there for you? (There is). Can you acknowledge your own mortality and take the wild ride in store for you?