Everything that God allows to happen to us has some meaning
We all interpret love very differently. For me love, in simple words, is the condition when you shine for someone and are thankful that he/she accepts your light and care.
Some of us often cannot distinguish between infatuation and love. Infatuation is agonizing and passionate dependence on another person. Infatuation never comes from God because there is suffering in it. In a sense, infatuation is “Koschey disease”. Koschey Immortal, the character of Russian folk tales, is a creature whose life strength lies not within himself but elsewhere. This is a reason why his life is always in danger. This is what typical for infatuation state, that is, sense of our life lies in other person. Falling in love we take steps toward each other but at the same time we lose the point of support in our own selves.
Infatuation is a trap, an ecstatic and unhealthy condition. If a marriage occurs because of infatuation it won’t last long. Spouses tyrannize and torment each other demanding from one another impracticable things. Eventually someone’s patience will end and this person is going to say, “That’s enough!” Love from God is quiet, peaceful, sacrificial and minds the beloved one but not its own feeling towards the partner. Love from God is responsible and the creation of family is the logical completion of it (here I mean love between man and woman, of course).
Cult of infatuation and the inability to differ it from real love have led to the standards of the moral law to fall in our society; people began sexual experimentation connecting with each other before making the final decision to stay together. The special term “civil marriage” was created in order to justify this point of view.
This point of view brings a lot of pain to people. Is it okay to try another person out as if buying shoes in a store –“are we a good match to each other?”. At the level of human physiology and psychology, male sperm is that “glue” the Holy Scriptures talk about – “Shall a man leave his father and his mother, and shall cleave onto his wife: and they shall be one flesh”. After people “stuck” to each other it is very painful to “be torn apart”.
What we call “love”, “infatuation” or “passion” has emotional (psychological) component and somatic (physical) as well. Certain biochemical processes take place within our bodies. We sometimes take the intensity and acceleration of these processes for love. American scientists estimated that “gene of infatuation” lives for 1.5-2 years. It means that intensity of this feeling when we “fall ill” with another person is most powerful within 1.5-2 years in average. This period is given to a person so he/she could learn how to love.
True love becomes apparent in the moment when married people face the question “who is going to take out the trash today?”. The loving person will say, “I am”.
I noticed that many people who experienced the pain of rejection as children are unable to ask for love, care and tenderness. I know one girl who was raised by her mother till the age of six and after that she was sent to KinderCare. This girl felt very uncomfortable there. On coming back home, the girl would through her arms around her mother’s neck and say, “Mummy, love me!”. That meant to hug her for a half an hour. A child could say such words but we, proud adults, having a low self-esteem from all of the rejections think, “How can I ask for it?”.
It is very important not to be afraid or shy to open up your heart to another person – to a friend, husband or wife. It is important to be able to say, “I miss your love now. It is crucial for me to have you near by today. Can we spend the night like this: I will sit near you and hide my face in your shoulder? I will cry. Can I? And you will calm me down. I really feel rottenly, I admit it. I just want to be with you, want to be weak today”.
Too many people want to have a relationship of love but fear to let off their guard. They are scared to show their weakness and vulnerability. They want to make the impression of a strong person. That is why many people lose their love.
When we are not ashamed to show some weakness to our partner it is a beginning of a more deep relationship. Love is a greater intimacy with maximum openness to each other. Loving people are completely uncovered (on the physical level as well). Each of them is vulnerable for another at most. In this case, harmony and beauty of the intimate marriage relations created by God are truly there.
Nowadays people can strip themselves for each other but their hearts remain closed. People think that physical and sexual relations can make them closer. Nothing of the kind! This type of relations reveals our loneliness even more.
Once I had to marry one couple. It was my friend and his girlfriend, now his wife. Somehow I happened to overhear a strange words before their marriage. The girl said, “I love him as my future husband but I do not trust him and cannot be completely open with him”. It was a shock to me! That very night I said to the guy, “Tomorrow I’m going to marry you. But I’ve just heard something strange.” – “Really? I did not know she felt that way.” – “Maybe you could talk to her?” – “Why, I don’t want to spoil our moods before the wedding day!”.
There can be a lot of reasons for parting. Any woman in the depths of her soul craves for her husband to subordinate her which means to put her into the New Testament order: “The head of a woman is a man, the head of every man is Christ”. The campaign of feminists on the West arose from the rebellion and unwillingness of women to obey to men. For Russia, the best description of such phenomenon will be the term “spirit of matriarchy”.
If a woman does not see her man as a responsible head of a family, she, feeling anxiety and danger, will take this responsibility herself and become a head, manager and legislator, sometimes even a tyrant. Why a tyrant? Because female leadership is based on her feelings and male leadership – on logic and common sense. If a woman takes the leadership in a family then all her female nature cries out deep inside that “something is wrong”. In this kind of a situation, a man often behaves like an apologetic boy but not as a soldier able to take the responsibility.
Let us remember the Russian word “married”. Very few women today are married “to their men”. Today the situation is often opposite – men are married “to their wives”. This is where the root of the tragedy lies that leads many families to collapse and leaves children fatherless.
If a man possesses a real power in a family, a woman will be ready to obey even if her husband is tough and firm because she feels protected. In case a woman does not feel protected, she starts to complain, rebel, go off into hysterics testing how long a man could bear it. Sometimes such tests take place up to the very wedding day. Why does she do all these things? Here we have natural mechanism activated – she tests to see if he is going to bear it or if he is a worthy, strong man that is able to stop all this.
One of the reasons for women to leave men is autism of the latter, the condition in which men are too introverted. If most of the time a man is absorbed in his ideas or work or prayers and is withdrawn from his woman, if he does not pay enough attention to her, a woman can take it as a lack of love and indifference. The period of acquaintance and courting is given to us so we could realize to what extent we are able to stay with each other – for all 100%, 80% or maybe for 10%. I know one couple where the girl is open-minded and joyful person and the boy is somewhat “frozen”. I told her that if she marries him she’ll become a Snow Maiden.
In some cases it is good when people are similar by temper. In other cases opposites work good as well, i.e. people complete each other. But in any case, a good “dance” of relationships can happen when people open up to each other to the deepest level, when they understand each other and feel comfortable together.
As a rule, those people that received plenty of both father’s and mother’s love as children can grant love in all sorts of relationships. They do not worry about getting a compensation for it in return. People that suffered a lack of love in their family are desperate to have love in return. They cannot give or take love, some of them even become “vampires of love” waiting for a partner to make up for their needs, to devote them her/his life, time, attention and emotional power.
It seems that the understanding of how and where the true love comes from is beyond our control. Only one thing is for sure, namely that God is a source of such love. If God is a priority No 1 for you, you will look at your chosen one by His eyes, will love this person by His love and will never be trapped by infatuation. Your loved one will never become your idol, your meaning for living and in case this person decided to leave you God will able to give you the strength to go on without him/her. You should know He will never forget or abandon you.
There is a reason behind everything that God allows to happen to us. Even the loss of relations with the loved ones can be fruitful. Infatuated person sees the meaning of life in his/her partner. Suddenly the beloved one leaves. At such moments we feel as if a part of us dies, we feel abandoned. Very often having suffered a loss of a loved one we start to analyze our own life, think about the eternity, even immortality. I believe that sometimes God lets us get disappointed in others just to bring us back to the deeply-consciousness of who we are by ourselves, to remind us that He wants our love and only He can truly quench our inner thirst.
What happens to a man when he is in love? Why does he lose his manhood and leadership in a family? As we already said, God created the following foundations of the world’s hierarchy: “the head of a woman is a man; the head of every man is Christ”. Only God can evaluate and dominate over man. If this right to evaluate (“Am I a real man?”, “Am I cool?”) is given to a woman, often man loses himself and his leadership.
The question of self-appraisal is one of the centuries-old psychological issues. Who is the measure of your self-appraisal? Is it our Heavenly Father or the woman you are in love with? If woman, you are going to lose yourself and your spiritual connection with God and let yourself to fall under the influence of “spirit of matriarchy”. The one evaluating you is to become your leader.
If the emotional connection with your partner breaks, it means that God through this situation wants to remind you about what you are, as well as of your role in this world and of the importance of Him in your life.
Evmeniy (Peristyi), Abbot
Was the girl that left your Juliette? (Archpriest Igor Gagarin)
Once in true love we cannot stop loving (Priest Andrew Lorgus)
The feeling that is not everlasting cannot be called “love” (Priest Ilia Shugaev)