Ray Charles, reflecting on his wife’s experience of a career in which so much psychological and physical excess was channeled into his music, summarized her virtue with these lines:
You taught me precious secrets
Of the truth, withholding nothing.
You came out in front
And I was hiding.
And then offers this gift of insight to those that have not been so blessed:
I love you in a place
Where there’s no space or time.
I love you for my life
because you’re a friend of mine.
Genesis declares that a man and woman become “one flesh”, but the truth is far deeper than that.
For most of us, the lure of sex is the slippery entrance to these mysteries. Particularly in our early adulthood, when embroiled with our peers in the undifferentiated spray of lusts that makes it almost impossible to sleep, we often surrender to temptation. While those early experiences are exhilarating, they end results are often not pretty. The young wife of the angry peer in graduate school came down with uterine cancer; the female lawyer paid for the extortion made possible by the easy access of college couplings with hands crabbed by the hatred of wives; the pedophile who offered his services in breaking the link between mother and son – all are reflections of the failure to graduate from the power and thrill of disorganized coupling into management of the garden of the soul.
It is the latter that Charles celebrates in the second stanza above. Women feel things, men change them. The partnership that flowers when we recognize that duality is incredibly powerful. Love takes up camp in a place outside of space and time, but from which every moment can be touched.
Once it is established, that kind of binding is almost impossible to break – not even death sunders it.
People with past life experiences relate that they recognize their lovers and family. As Paul Simon put it in “Senorita with a Necklace of Tears”:
I was born before my father
And my children before me
And we are born and born again
Like the waves of the sea
So what happens when a couple, from that place outside of time, looks into the future and sees a planet with too many people? Are they to surrender the work they each do on the other’s souls? Work that can only be done when incorporated?
I went to school in Berkeley, and spent a fair amount of time with gay and lesbian couples. I almost always saw a pairing of masculine and feminine spirits. The physical inconvenience was a sacrifice that they had made.
They love each other. Get over it, people.