Wisdom Workout

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Imaginative Perception

By Susan McNeal Velasquez
By Susan McNeal Velasquez

When we have a breakdown in our love relationships, our friendships or our familial ties, it often comes down to the loss of imaginative perception. We have lost the magic.

Yes, there are reasons why the relationship isn’t working. If those reasons were the only issues in the way, it would be an easy decision to end the relationship and get out or recommit, reestablish and get back in.

When we continually stockpile evidence against the accused yet never fully bring the case to trial, something more is going on.

But they lied, you say. They cheated. There is too much anger, rudeness, sarcasm, nastiness and criticism. He or she is weak, submissive, boring or too passive.

The whole relationship is crazy-making and confusing. It is overwhelmingly difficult.

Relationships become hopeless when we enmesh them in psychological labeling and name-calling. When the relationship’s home base moves from the heart and into the head, everything is labeled.

Each interaction is carefully categorized and filed in its appropriate place to be used as fuel to feed the blazing fire of pent-up disappointments, anger, righteous indignation and blame.

We fan the fire with one hand while doing a rain dance to the gods, hoping the heavens will open up and magically put out the raging flames of discontent.

Naming and categorizing deadens and diminishes our ability to fully experience anything. When we take up residence in the attic of our minds and then foolishly attempt to control and manipulate our relationships from there, we set ourselves up for failure.

A few skillless moves later and we are left with a love life that is like a puppeteer who’s marionette has gotten its wires hopelessly crossed.

We can only create a full, rich and fulfilling life when we come down from the attic and take up residency in the living room of our generous imagination, seated warmly around the hearth of our heart.

The heart sees receptively. The heart responds to nuances. It works in tandem with imagination. The heart and imagination walk hand in hand on the softer, slower, kinder and gentler side of the street. Heart and imagination care less about what a person has done and more about how they are.

What are the present longings, dreams, tastes, preferences, wishes and hopes of this person you used to love? What are the unique ways of this person underneath the protective shield of defensive behaviors?

Heart smarts has nothing to do with figuring out, fixing, rearranging or making something happen. The heart has the capacity to free the hostage, empty the jail, acquit the accused, let the past hurts and horrors drop by the wayside and start anew.

If something in you shrinks back in revulsion and screams no at the thought of giving up the struggle, stay tuned.

We cannot give someone else leeway until we are willing to give it to ourselves. How can we perceive another through our heart’s affections when we are shut down to our own longings, wishes, hopes, dreams and preferences?

Why would anyone make themselves visible and vulnerable around us if we automatically and habitually probe, push, interrogate, invalidate, judge and second-guess them and their motives? How can we expect anyone to consistently sit on the end of the relationship seesaw labeled wrong just so that we can remain elevated to the position of being right?

Until we explore our answers to these kinds of questions, we cannot move on.

When we settle into our inspirational, intuitive self, a new door begins to open. This door is marked wholeness. Holiness.

How whole are you? What are you longing for in your heart of hearts? Where is your tenderness, your wonder, your patience, kindness and gentleness? When was the last time you gave yourself a break by turning off your judging, analyzing and categorizing in favor of creative and imaginative sensing and perceiving?

Forget about “out there” for a moment. Turn your attention inward and perhaps if you listen closely, you will hear your heart whisper: “Here I am. Whole, perfect and complete in my ability to love.”

And then, little by little, we can begin the process of letting down, letting go, listening, feeling the gentle opening and tender receiving, renewing, regenerating and allowing the magic of love to return.


Susan is a local writer and author of “Beyond Intellect: Journey Into the Wisdom of your Intuitive Mind.” susanvelasquez.com




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