Comment: I humbly share some thoughts

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I humbly share some thoughts

Often I see people enter marriage for convenience--to end the pestering from family, as a show of achievement (a life milestone), to partake in conjugal delights, and even for a government tax reprieve. Then there are marriages that form from pithy love where happiness from pleasure of the senses or of the mind drives the temporal commitment. Such a state seems ephemeral to me as the senses dull and the mind wanders. And so it seems ironic that a marriage for convenience may sometimes outlast the marriage of the latter.

Then there is marriage with purpose. Purpose is our utmost goal. Of course if the purpose is for convenience, then any inconvenience would tend to dissolve the marriage. If not for convenience, why marry and for what purpose? How does a marriage with purpose compare to one formulated by our current popular culture? In my estimation, our popular culture equates happiness with pleasure and looks at discomfort as a vice. If purpose can be found in our popular culture, it is surely this: seek out happiness and avoid hardship. If it were not for its intrinsically self-absorbed sense of awareness, this hedonistic exhortation seems a most sensible mantra. Purpose, then, involves more than being self-aware; Purpose is about being fully aware and it invariably means asking what is the reason for life?

If the purpose for marriage is for rearing children, then perhaps we can count on the marriage to last eighteen years or so. A couple married with such purpose will find happiness in the development of their children through their triumphs and foibles. Notice that happiness here is not devoid of pleasure but can taste the joy in the growing pains of life. But when the children grow up, where does the marriage go?

If the purpose for marriage is for life long companionship, then perhaps we can count on the marriage to last "till death do us part." And yet, these secular soul mate unions derive their drive from maintaining an equilibrium of satisfaction (or dissatisfaction). For if the purpose is for companionship, the cycle will be a constant adding of salt and water to taste. And perhaps it is enough to live as play mates until our last breath...

But if we ask, what is the reason for life? We may wander on and ask, what is beyond this life? At this point we might ponder on the soul. For if there is nothing beyond this life, there is no soul and if there is no soul, then no soul mate. And the ebb and flow of play mates would seem the most sensible course to chart on the waters of Life. But if there is purpose to this life, it is assuredly to live for Love. The soul is a vessel that seeks to be filled with Love and shared for Love. If marriage is entered for the temporal trappings of love without the soul, when the trap is unexpectedly sprung, we see love come hither and then away. If marriage is entered for the Eternal, for Love, then our life is more directed and less likely to go astray. For once we have this general purpose, our specific calling will be easier to discern; a marriage shared by two soul mates becomes one shared by two soul ministers who will care for one another in good times and in bad, in sickness and in health, and thus becomes the support for a full and meaningful life.

Perhaps my thoughts are a bit esoteric? Maybe we can glean some wisdom from Kahlil Gibran and his thoughts on marriage.