Relationships by their very nature are based in the past and future. They exist as a construct of the mind.
We feel more secure in relationship because we believe others will be there for us in the future, which helps us escape from the pain of being alone. It helps us escape the pain of separation and the pain of living in a world where no one is truly present.
But this mechanism of escape will take you out of Presence and imprison you within the mind. Then you will be caught in the past. You will bring your incomplete relationships from the past, particularly with your mother and father, and project them onto your current relationships.
You will project all your unhealed wounds and unfulfilled needs into your relationships. Then your relationships will become contaminated with expectation, resentment, blame, guilt, judgment and issues of control.
Relating can only be in this moment. No past. No future. With relating there is no projection of the past onto the present. And there is no anxiety about what might happen in the future.
When you relate to someone, you are present. You are spontaneous and you have no expectations. There is no attachment because you are focused in the moment rather than in the past or future.
This does no mean that you cannot live with someone and share a life together. It just means that the focus will be much more on relating than on relationship.
With relating there is no ownership. There are no guarantees of security. You cannot be sure that the person with whom you are relating will be there for you in the future. But that keeps you alive and vibrant. It keeps you at the edge of the unknown. It prevents you from taking each other for granted.
In relationship, you gain security by owning each other. He is mine. She is mine. The ownership kills you and it kills the relationship. Ownership brings with it control, restriction and limitation which deadens you to life.
It is only by allowing yourself to live in a state of not-knowing that you remain open to life and feel fully alive. Each new moment is pregnant with the unknown. If you can live with the unknown, then sooner or later, you will enter into the unknowable.
Excerpt from “Words from Silence” (Revised Edition) by Leonard Jacobson. pp.156-157, 160.