To Giovanni, my young Mexican friend
Nowadays, we do not write letters any more because we invented e-mails which are editable when writing and faster in reaching the destination. Imagine, in an hour’s time, you will be reading my letter! And because of internet, we meet virtually and become friends of language learning, which would have never happened only 15 some years ago.
You were asking me my point of view about the differences between the relationship now and that of before in the 80’s and 90’s. Oh, boy! What a big subject! I realize how narrow or biased my point of view can be no matter what I will say! But anyway, I would like to share them with you, not to say that experience means self-righteousness, nevertheless for the sake of language learning.
I know that you were asking about man and woman relationship, if just relationship, we can talk about different relationship such as the relationship between mother son, employees and managers, social relationship, you name it. That between man and woman is obviously the most interesting one which has been fascinating us, the most painful one by which we learn about love, care and reality, and also the most complicated one which involves endless aspects of our life.
I believe we share similarities no matter who we are and where we live. China, Mexico and Canada, now or 20 years ago, apart from all superficial or profound differences, we are all human beings, which determines that we can not be that different! First of all, the reason of forming a couple has never changed: natural biological attraction between the 2 sexes. As the result of this attraction, the relationship has been added an extra meaning such as taking care of each other.
A couple’s healthy relationship should always base on true love, but unfortunately, a big number of couples choose to stay for the sake of social pressure, family, kids, comfortable life style, financial liabilities or simply for the sake of saving all the trouble in going through the divorce. The more backward the society is, the more number of people to choose these above reasons to stay. That is why we had less divorce 20 years ago than now, which does not mean that they had more people enjoying healthy relationships.
My mom told us a sad and astonishing story. Her young handsome physical training teacher in junior high in the City of Xichang ( Sichuan Province ) was killed by the judicial system after his wife found out his adultery with one of his students and the student was driven out from the school. It is never a glorious thing for the teacher to have a relationship with his student while married even now, yet today, we would have kept his life in consideration of the pure value of life itself and we would have become more or less conscious of the reasons of his secret “immoral” relationship. On the other hand, people have also become more conscious of their positions and the better ways of expressing what they want…In another word, we and the system we have been building has become more conscious of who we are, what we want from each other and healthy constructive ways of problem solving…
In Quebec, again, this “Quiet Revolution” clearly separated sexual relationship from politics, work and moral judgement. The 15th Prime minister Pierre E. Trudeau had driven the government and the Catholic church out from people’s bedroom. He said that the government and the church have nothing to do with what people do in their bedrooms, which also gave rights to gay relationships. I should say that this small, quite unknown to other worlds’ francophone Quebec is very advanced in this aspect, where we see people having a couple of kids without getting married or couples break up so often and easily. Many people would say that Quebecois ( more francophone, while more traditional people or allophones like Jewish, Chinese or Arabs are trying hard to keep their traditions) seek to avoid unnecessary bridal expenses & divorce costs and loss as much as losing faith in marriage or relationship.
Just a few days ago, a friend said: ” I do not believe in relationship”. This remark is not new and it shows that people are lost after trying so hard but failed to find the “Right Person”. This disbelief also has become a modern cliche which is the source of hope losing. This can be seen as an intermediary status between liberation and destiny and a status before a graceful balance is found. Our society has evolved into a conscious and health-aiming world where we do not suppress our differences, we see no necessity to conform and we value and praise so much our individualism that any pressure from other than our own consideration or choice, any reason other than our soul liberation, any value preference other than our freedom are not sufficient to be the reasons for separation. This is the greatest revolution of all times and we are getting closer to our eventual purpose of life:
Life is precious,
Love has higher price,
yet for the sake of freedom,
both can be thrown away ( my translation. I will find the original).
Such is the poem of a hungarian poet: Sandor Petofi who described the eventual purpose of our life.
From this poem, we can say that our relationship with another person is not as important as our relationship with the dreams we cherish and the values we pursue! In Christianity’s words, that is the relationship with God. I try to avoid labels such as God so that I will be understood without any prejudice. Don’t we see, after many times of trying to make the relationship work, that people cherish the same thing will enjoy a long and nicer relationship? We do have a chance to find or meet the right person, but it will only work when both persons share similar goals and have similar energy to achieve them. That can be the solution to our relationship dilemma.
I see relationship first as a profound spiritual recognition of each other and hence a deep bond in soul and body. I see it also as a partnership or a corporation to make it work between 2 people who have similar goals in life with similar or different characters, similar mentality and level of energy. As of today, energy level and personal interests are as important as the sexual attraction, educational level or family breeding, because life will have to be lived, not talked or read only. In brief, life goes beyond and time extends it power within a profound relationship, with similar goals, energy and ways to achieve them and which nurtures the secondary love between the 2 lovers.
Simplicity is the eventual way to get to our goal between people in relationship. I believe in Chinese ancient Daoism which has evolved into such supreme philosophy of life: simplicity & liberation of souls. In saying so, it doesn’t mean that we understand what these words mean. The greatest of all is to learn to BECOME S I M P L E amongst life’s complication and complex situations, is to free ourselves from pointless accusations and detach our minds from any singlar past negative event or even mistake. All the fights between different believers, different social ethics and different moral grounds come from wanting to be right and have power over others, all the accusations such as lying, cheating etc between couples have blocked our minds in finding out the true reasons for misbehaving, in searching for where we really want to go and how we want to be there. We do not want to crash the relationship by putting labels on people so to put out the light of hope and possibilities for changes for better, and we would be unwise to give any judgement before we really get to know who they are and what the matter is. I see all our mistakes and misbehaving as ways of struggling to find out who ourselves are and whom we are living with…Simplicity helps unburden our souls so that they can see clearly through the fog of life to always grasp the essence of the spirit.
After all, the purpose of being in a relationship is to find a partner who can share the most what life can provide for our limited life span. At my age- an age when one knows his/her eternity*, when one does not give a shit about labels or the fact that I might be too direct because of my entrepreneurial spirit ( efficiency seeking for adding value on time or life)…I am conscious that my life is precious and important and so are yours, and that I am true to myself while offering to others my sincerity that I do my best to be kind and nice, that I try my best in solving problems in better ways than the usual unhealthy and indirect dodging, lying or cheating, and I give you all my heart and energy to be an excellent partner on our life’s journey no matter whom I am with.
Giovanni, you are only 24 years old looking for a relationship. I believe that you will meet some one who might not know what she wants in life, whom she really wants to be or how she will love you, but it doesn’t matter. The most important thing, I believe, is to be happy and grateful everyday and radiant your joy to other people, be active and of service to people, hence you will be well loved. I see that life is so great in front of you no matter where you go and with whom you will be.
Have a good night!
Your Spanish language student
( without review and corrections)
* Chinese saying: When we reach the age of 30, we will have established our career; when we reach 40, we no longer wonder or be perplexed; when we reach 50, we will know our eternity; at 60 our words become pleasant and at 70, we will melt into the eternity.