An unnamed ancient eastern mystic have penned that you “…should always stay at the beginning”. The beginning of a new relationship is sweet and filled with endorphin induced bliss. Equally when we first meet/fall in love with Jesus we are equally blissed out. All our attention is on this new found love, we breathe it, dream it, dwell on it, obsess about it, we are totally and one hundred percent present in it and because of our wholeheartedness we are mindful of it.
It has been suggested that one of the reasons for this passion is our unknowing, the endless possibilities of this new found love and the promise of an equally blissful tomorrow. Someone said “ignorance is bliss” and in this case it may very well be true, our curiosity and passion drives us to find out everything about this mysterious being we have encountered, this other.
Then something happens, the love travels from the heart to the head. We go from unknowing to knowing. The known becomes familiar and “familiarity breeds contempt”. Our thirst becomes sated and now we think that we know the other and with that we freeze the other in an image of our making. We simply stop the clock and act towards the other with our finished pre-conceived idea of who they are and what they are thinking often based on past experience.
The problem is that the minute we stop the clock, the minute we freeze something living it dies. Life is change and everything alive changes by the second, hour, day.
I think this is why the sacred text tells us that gods grace (undeserved gift) is NEW every morning, it is not an old recycled grace but a new vibrant living grace. I think this is why Paul exhorts us to “be renewed by the transformation of your mind”. I think it is why the bibles use of the word bara in genesis 1.1 is not a done deal not a finished thing but rather “when god began creating the heavens and the earth”, that is something ongoing still unfolding. Because anything that has stopped changing, transforming has stopped because of death. Or as Adavaitananda said in his lecture this weekend: “If you want a safe/unchanging relationship, go look in the graveyard”.
Life is change, and alive people change all the time, if we are to keep the passion and the first love in our relationship we have to realise that the other is not the same person today as yesterday, and if we cannot accept that god constantly changes (because a real relationship implies two bodies that relate, influence each other) then at least we must recognize that god as the infinite other can never be fully known and thus at least from our limited experience must be perceived as ever changing as god revels more and more of godself to us.
The idea of the static god, static person, static marriage or the static relationship is an idea that is so poisonous that it will kill whatever relation it is applied to.
If we want to “stay at the beginning” we must embrace the idea of unknowing and thus allow for constant transformation, constant change, constant adventure. This will keep us guessing, keep us humble and at the same time keep us alive.