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Embracing the Beloved

Relationship as a Path of Awakening
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Paperback Book
January, 1996
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$19.95 CAD
Banyen's Description: 

Stephen and Ondrea Levine have devoted more than 18 years to investigating the mind-body relationship, particularly as it relates to the states of healing, dying, and grieving. Their work has affected healing and medical practices worldwide; it has touched many pilgrims very deeply . . . in the land where we merge, and heal, and share the living waters. Now, in Embracing the Beloved, the Levines turn their attention to what has been “our most significant spiritual commitment—our own relationship.”

Focusing on human relationship, romantic and familial, is a natural progression of their work in the areas of healing, meditation, and dying which Stephen has written about in his earlier books—and which Stephen and Ondrea have been sharing in their rare workshops.

Their insights and anecdotes will resonate with many of us. It takes courage to nurture a relationship, and the Levines know how difficult it can be to take the first step: to examine ourselves clearly. Even more vast a leap is to cease contemplating “the other person” and to focus instead on the third party, the relationship itself—which is the sum greater than its two separate parts.

When we discover that relationship can be a spiritual practice as powerful as any, combining the explorations of the body, mind and heart into a single practice, there may develop, at first for moments and then days or even years, an implacable connectedness and psychic interbeing. This mystical union is the fruit of a conscious, committed relationship.

Such relationships are rare and worth all we can give. They arrive on their own schedule. In the beginning they require all you have. As they ripen, they necessitate all you are.

Interspersed with “Dyad Beloved, Healing, Bonding, and Forgiveness Meditations,” there are chapters with titles such as Completing Birth, Relationship as Healing, In the Boneyard of the Beloved, I and Other, An Experiment in Mystical Union, Levels of Conscious Connection, Softening the Armored Heart, Unfinished Business, Learning to Love your Parents, Who’s in Control Here? and Endgame—Separation, Death and Conscious Divorce. Other meditations offered include ones on afflictive emotions, loving kindness, mindfulness of process, and the grieving heart.

“If you aspire to transform an intimate relationship into a tandem inner journey towards spiritual realization, Embracing the Beloved is the most subtly articulated ‘how to’ book available.” —Ram Dass

The distance from your pain, your grief, your unattended wounds, is the distance from your partner. And the distance from your partner is your distance from the living truth, your own great nature. Whatever maintains that distance, that separation from ourselves and our beloveds, must be investigated with mercy and awareness. This distance is not overcome by one “giving up their space” to another, but by both partners entering together the unknown between them. The mind creates the abyss but the heart crosses it.

A conscious relationship teaches us to treat ourselves and others as our only child. And to do it mindfully. It does not break the heart. A conscious relationship is as healing and life-affirming as an unconscious, old-style relationship is at times harmful and life-denying. The harmful effect of an unconscious relationship is that it keeps us so small, dependent on external circumstances for our happiness. More needs than gifts are brought to such an entanglement. But a conscious relationship offers the possibility of relating across the gulf of I and other all the way into the heart of our beloved. A conscious relationship allows us to remain conscious while in relationship. It’s a whole new ball game.

Stephen Levine’s other titles, all recommended, are:

·    A Gradual Awakening

·    Guided Meditations, Explorations & Healings

·    Healing into Life and Death

·    In the Heart Lies the Deathless

·    Meetings at the Edge: Conversations with the Dying, the Healing & the Healed


Publisher’s Description: 

Stephen and Ondrea Levine have devoted more than eighteen years to investigating the mind/body relationship, particularly as it relates to the states healing, dying, and grieving. Their work has affected healing and medical practices worldwide. Now, in Embracing the Beloved, the Levines turn their attention to what has been "our most significant spiritual commitmentour own relationship."
In this groundbreaking book, they demonstrate how to use a relationship as a means for profound inner growth and healing. Their insights and anecdotes will benefit all who are drawn to looking inward, and all who seek a relationship as a path for spiritual renewal and merciful awareness of life.In almost two decades of work on the mind/body relationship and our knowledge both of healing and dying, the Levines have become world-renowned, earning the praise of Elisabeth Kubler-Ross and many other experts in the field. Here they explore the challenges and comforts of relationships to show how commitment and communication serve as nourishing wellsprings of spiritual renewal.

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