Here’s your second soul-nourishing instalment from Kahlil Gibran’s spiritual bible, The Prophet – this time on marriage.
\\ Love one another but make not a bond of love: Let it rather be a moving sea between the shores of your souls.
Give your hearts but not into each other’s keeping.
And stand together yet not too near together:
For the pillars of the temple stand apart,
And the oak tree and the cyprus grow not in each other’s shadow \\
How Can You Apply This In Your Daily Life?
So next time you’re tempted to over-analyse, overbear or overcrowd to keep hold of love, reframe that thought and remember that healthy love leaves space to breathe, move and – just – wait – and – see.
Resist that temptation to be, do and have everything – together – all the time – for it is in absence and longing that desire takes root and appreciation grows.
And should you ever feel out of control, as vulnerability has us all at times in the hands of love, remember – it is in relinquishing control that we gain control – in trusting that we develop trust – and in giving that we receive.
“In 2009, when I was newly pregnant with my first child, we spent a week in France with three other married couples. In those heady days before children dominated our lives, we whiled away our week, jogging in the hills, drinking rosé at lunch and feasting well into the night. Five years after this idyllic holiday and, between us, six children later, we are the only couple of the four who are still married.
Last year, 118,140 marriages ended in divorce, with half of those in the first 10 years. Does this suggest the shock of parenthood is to blame? I spend my days teaching antenatal classes. The expectant mums in the Bump Class expect us to talk about labour, caring for their babies and how to breastfeed, but what they don’t expect is marriage guidance. I am adamant that the greatest gift you can give your baby is to take the time and energy to nurture your marriage. While having a child is certainly a good reason to stay with your spouse, your child will not be the glue that actually holds your relationship together.
On a daily basis I see women desperately trying to give their babies the best start in life. They spend hours practising hypnotherapy to give them a good chance of a natural birth. They splash out hundreds of pounds on the most comfortable buggy and, in some cases, hundreds of thousands on a private education. But so often they overlook what is arguably the most important thing they can give their child: a happy, stable home. And if a couple of hours a year can help achieve this, then why on earth wouldn’t you?”
Marina Fogle, The Telegraph
How Is Marina’s Article Relevant To You?
Ever wondered how you make a marriage last? How do you ensure that having children doesn’t drain the sparky dynamic that brought you together? What practical measures can you actually take to ensure you’re a survival story not a statistic? Read this fantastic article by Marina and Ben Fogle from The Telegraph on why marriage MOTs are the greatest investment you’ll ever make…
Cohabitation Or Marriage?
Should you have children outside marriage or after marriage? Isn’t having children a commitment in itself?
Apparently not, according to statistics released by the Marriage Foundation founded by Former High Court judge Sir Paul Coleridge.
What Do The Stats Say?
Research conducted by conservative think tank the Marriage Foundation analysed data from 40,000 households in the UK. This indicated that as many as 77 per cent of the couples surveyed who had children after they got married were still together. This was significantly higher than the 44 per cent of couples still together who had children before tying the knot.
What’s The Bottom Line?
Although it is a positive step that “the social shame of having children outside marriage” has been effectively eliminated, there is still value in “cystallising commitment before starting a family”, he claimed.
What’s The Way Forward?
In response to this study, he said the belief that cohabitation is as stable as marriage “should be eradicated by clear public statements and education”. Whichever party is in government following May’s general election should “tackle the worrying rise in family instability in the UK”, he added.
Whatever your views, the full article on Marilyn Stowe’s blog, a top UK divorce lawyer, makes for interesting reading…
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