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Spiritual Partnership
by Ami McKay

"now I love you and you love me
(and books are shutter
than books
can be)
and deep in the high that does nothing but fall
(with a shout
around we go all)
there’s somebody calling who’s we
we’re anything brighter then even the sun
(we’re everything greater
than books
might mean)

we’re everyanything more than believe
(with a spin
alive we’re alive)
we’re wonderful one times one"

~EE Cummings

I love this poem. The poet captures the euphoria of love without dismissing the wonder of the individual. He doesn’t rave on and on about how he was lost before he met his love, or how he might consider his new mate to be as perfect as Aphrodite. Best of all, he throws away the cliched image of ‘I was half and now that I have met you I am whole.’

Thank goodness there’s no Jerry McGuire character in this poem saying, "You complete me."

Allow me to continue before you think me jaded as well as a naysayer to romantic love. The mathematics of this poem proves elegant and true. ‘We’re wonderful one times one.’ To me, this is the most important line and Cummings definitely saved the best for last. He is saying that one (whole being) times one (whole being) can also equal ‘one’ (whole ‘we,’ a whole relationship). This is the essence of any spiritual partnership (romantic or otherwise).

Looking for Love…

I’d like to introduce you to a different way of looking at romantic love. Although the term ‘spiritual partnership’ can apply to many types of relationships, I will focus on the romantic variety first.

We have been conditioned by our friends, family, fairy tales, the media, society, music and religion to feel inadequate if we don’t find the perfect ‘soulmate’ in life. Many of us have cried into our pillows just wishing we could feel whole, wanting to be made complete by a ‘better half.’ I’m here to tell you in the most comforting way… that’s a load of crap.

Being a ‘whole’ person in the deepest sense of the meaning can only come from following the path of your true purpose in life, from following your bliss. You can’t place the responsibility for your happiness on another person, it is not fair to them and it is not fair to you. That kind of relationship always ends in disappointment. If you are following your true path, then you will find authentic power within yourself and the nagging need for someone else (seeking external power) will disappear. As you continue on your path many different people will come into your life. All of them are teachers, all of them a spiritual partners, and some may even be romantic partners as well. All relationships, romantic or not, hold Cummings’ mathematical possibility of becoming a ‘we.’

What about Marriage?

In this day and age, divorce rates are high and people are puzzled as to how the traditional marriages of yesteryear can ever survive today’s fast paced lifestyle. Many couples marry because they are ‘in love.’ They have overwhelming attraction to one another and because they feel romantic love towards one another, they feel that they should commit their lives to each other. Close… but these couples need to take a closer look.

I hear so many husbands say: "she’s just not the same as when I married her," and I hear so many wives say "I don’t know who I am anymore, I lost myself somewhere along the way." Or the husband says, ‘it’s not fun anymore, this isn’t what I thought it would be’ and the wife says, ‘he’s so stressed out all the time, he doesn’t take time to be loving." How did two people who seemed to love each other so much, come to not know each other and then not even know themselves?

They became a ‘couple’ and stopped following their individual paths of bliss. Perhaps they stopped talking to each other about where they wanted to go in life. Perhaps they came to look at the bonds of marriage as prohibitive rather than engaging in an active spiritual partnership full of growth and cooperation. If the people involved are willing to trust, cooperate, share and love, spiritual partnerships can last a lifetime. If personal growth is left behind for the sake of marriage then uneasiness and an empty relationship are the results.


This past summer I went to a book sale at our local library. There in a box of various books was a sweet little six volume set titled, "Mother’s Encyclopedia". I was charmed by way the small hard back books fit neatly into my hands and decided I’d purchase them and take them home. The copyright is 1942 and the chapter headings alone scream of ‘leave it to beaver’ re-runs. Yes, there are even chapters called ‘The Father’s Role" and "The Mother’s Role".

Times have certainly changed. Unfortunately our spiritual understanding of romantic unions and relationships has been slow to follow. Many people still have certain expectations of what their spouse should ‘do’ and be within the relationship.

M. Scot Peck gives a striking example of this in his book "the Road Less Traveled". He recalls a couples group meeting in which he asked the members to share their thoughts on the purpose and function of their spouses…. "All of them defined the purpose and function of their husbands and wives in reference to themselves; all of them failed to perceive that their own mates might have an existence basically separate from their own or any kind of destiny apart from their marriage." When the group asked him to define his wife’s role in his own marriage, Peck replied, "The purpose and function of Lily, is to grow and be the most of which she is capable."

Closing thoughts…

Be true to yourself. Spiritual partners will honor the truth in you and come to your life as your journey requires. Blessings!

"but let there be spaces in your togetherness,
and let the winds of the heavens dance between you

Love one another, but make not a bond of love:
Let it rather be a moving sea between the shores of your souls.
Fill each other’s cup but drink not from one cup.
Give one another of your bread but eat not from the same loaf

Sing and dance together and be joyous,
But let each one of you be alone,
Even as the strings of a lute are alone
Though they quiver with the same music.

Give your hearts, but not into each other’s keeping.
For only the hand of Life can contain your hearts.
And stand together yet not too near together:
For the pillars of the temple stand apart,
And the oak tree and cypress grow not in each other’s shadow."

~Kahlil Gibran

©Copyright 2001 Ami McKay

Who is Ami McKay?

I am a storyteller, a singer of songs, a healing harpist & an artisan. I believe in Magic - the kind which crafted the gossamer breathing wonder of the Universe.

We are all a part of that whole. Sometimes we trudge through life & lend our hearts to forget. But that is not living.....

I hope to remind others of that.

Please feel free to contact me at: amimckay@yahoo.ca

Visit my web site:


Visit Ami McKay at her website:
Ami McKay



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