Many people think of meditation as something lonely and even isolating, as if a dedicated meditator has to become some sort of hermit living on a mountain.
This couldn’t be further from the truth. In fact, relationships are often our best teachers, including romantic relationships.
When two people in love decide to walk a spiritual path together, they are in for so many surprises, insights and revelations along the way. And the relationship becomes so much deeper as a result of this inner dimension.
Yoga, meditation, silent meditation retreats and other practices, when brought into a relationship, are powerful tools for transformation.
If you’re ready to start this journey with your partner, I will share some advice on how to develop a practice together and how to make your relationship a spiritual practice in itself.
How to develop a practice with your partner
- Practice together
Simple and effective: just do your meditation and yoga together!
If you have a daily meditation practice, you know already that this time is when you are the most open. Going deep into yourself, you find the space that is at once so vulnerable and yet completely strong and loving.
When you go there with a partner, you form a subtle bond that goes beyond the external and the everyday. In the language of yoga, we could talk about the harmony and fusion of the pranic and astral bodies, the deeper levels of your being.
Sitting together in silence might be the most intimate thing you ever do with your partner.
You can experiment with sitting facing each other or side by side, and with guiding each other in meditation.
Yoga is also a wonderful way to connect with your partner and meet each other in a sacred space. You can do a synchronized practice but it’s not necessary. Just being in the same room and doing your own practice, the energy you build up together is greater than the sum of either of you practicing on your own.
- Take responsibility for each other’s evolution
Your partner is the one who knows you the best and probably sees you the most. You’re not wearing any masks around them (hopefully) and they’re too familiar with you to let you hide behind excuses.
This is why he or she is your best ally in strengthening your own practice, even – or especially – when you don’t feel motivated yourself.
As two spiritual beings on a journey together, take responsibility for each other along the way.
Discuss with your partner and agree to check in with each other about daily practice, classes or goals. Sometimes a reminder and some loving support makes all the difference between keeping a strong daily practice and slowly drifting away from it.
The beauty of being on a path together is that often, when you’re tired or feeling unmotivated, your partner will have the energy to encourage you and remind you why you wanted to practice. And when your partner is feeling down, you can be there to lift him or her up.
Another side of this is to call your partner out on it if you see them acting in a way that goes against their deepest values. Of course, do this with love and the intention to help them grow, not as if you’re policing them. And be open for them to do the same for you!
Once you feel as committed to your partner’s spiritual progress as to your own, you’ve developed something really powerful, a synergy that will carry both of you farther than you could imagine.
- Couples meditation
Along with your own meditation, you can explore meditation practices for couples to do together, such as eye gazing.
Eye gazing is an element of tantric practice but just on its own, it can open up a whole new dimension in a relationship.
Eyes are the window to the soul. Looking deeply and consciously into a partner’s eyes can be profoundly transformative.
It’s wonderful to practice eye gazing before or after making love, or after meditating together.
Start by sitting facing each other. You can sit close, almost knee to knee, and hold hands if you wish. Begin with eyes closed, connecting to your breath and bringing awareness into your heart. You may notice you and your partners’ breath naturally become synchronized, but you don’t have to force it.
When you both feel ready, open your eyes and lovingly meet each other’s gaze. Try to hold the gaze without blinking, dropping any expectations and stories. Just be present and look for that divine spark in your partner’s eyes.
- Do a silent meditation retreat together
Going through an intense experience together always creates a powerful bond. When that experience is a meditation retreat with your partner – even if you don’t interact during the retreat itself – it can bring a spiritual relationship to the next level.
There’s something special and almost magical about bonds formed in silence. Personally, I “met” some of my best friends in silent retreats and afterwards, before we even spoke to each other, the connection was already there!
Participating in a retreat with your partner allows you to bring the magic of silence into your relationship and to meet other in a new way: fresh, open and connected to your deepest selves.
If you feel called, you can of course simply both sign up for the same retreat, or find a meditation retreat specifically for couples.
For example, Meditation Retreat Peru offers silent retreats designed to bring couples closer together along their shared path, exploring dimensions of sacred femininity and masculinity along with yoga and meditation.
This sort of experience is perfect for deepening a relationship and jump starting your spiritual practice at the same time.
- Go on a spiritual couple holiday together
Along with going on an inner journey with your partner, you can create life-long memories with each other on a spiritual tour or holiday for couples.
What can be more heart-opening than visiting the most beautiful sacred places of the world, hand in hand with your significant other? Whether it’s to the banks of the Ganga or the heights of Machu Picchu, experiencing together the high energy of sacred sites is bound to bring you together.
If you want to take a tour or holiday package, look for one that has the right balance of spirituality, activities and free time. You’ll want to feel guided and learn something meaningful from the experience, but still have the space to integrate and bond with your partner.
At Meditation Retreat Peru, we also offer spiritual tours for couples in conjunction with silent retreats. This combination – seven days visiting sites around the Sacred Valley of the Andes, three days in silence on a remote island and three days relaxing on the shore of Lake Titicaca – provides the ground for both inner growth and a joyful shared experience to treasure for years to come.
After a journey like that, you and your beloved can go home relaxed and inspired, ready to meet each other with fresh eyes and open hearts.
A conscious relationship is one of the most beautiful things in the world. Whether you are beginner meditators or experienced practitioners, still in that honeymoon phase or celebrating your 50the anniversary together, building a spiritual practice together can only bring more joy, trust and connection, to each other and to life itself.