OPINION: Jewish lessons in love for National Marriage Week

OPINION: Jewish lessons in love for National Marriage Week

By Rabbi Joseph Kaye, life coachJoseph Kaye - Life Coach & Educator

No one likes to argue with their spouse, and for sure a couple that is always arguing is unlikely to be on the cover of Good Marriage Weekly, but the reality is, ‘words’ are essential to any relationship.

If you have nothing to discuss, it is because you are no longer sharing the vision of living and growing together. You are geographically together, but emotionally worlds apart.

Unfortunately many couples feel they have to choose to either argue or ignore – is there no happy medium? What if there was just one idea that could change the dynamics of our relationships, how incredible would that be?

National Marriage Week is a great time to try and figure out that concept and it all starts with Elvis.

Dr. Norman Weissman, the pathologist who compiled the toxicology report after Elvis’s death, testified that he had never seen so many drugs in one body.

When asked what could possibly justify such a monstrous, life-threatening routine, David Stanley answers by quoting Elvis himself: ‘I’d rather be unconscious than miserable.’

What was it that Elvis really wanted in Life? Emotions!

As human beings we crave a number of emotions.

We all want to feel a sense of significance, excitement, beauty, self and inner worth, security, and growth.

Some may feel a stronger need for significance, while others may have security high up in their pecking order.

Envision your life for a second without these emotions; I’m sure it’s not an appealing image.

I guess you are wondering what this has to do with last week’s National Marriage Week, relationships and Elvis? Everything!

In relationships and marriage most people tend to depend on outside sources to cater for their emotional needs.

Take feeling secure for example, some people will expect their job or their spouse to create this emotion for them. Most of the time, the only cardinal sin their spouse did was not to provide the emotion that they expected them to instinctively supply.

That all being said, there are three levels to emotional fulfilment in ascending order. The lowest level is God forbid living the Elvis experience, catering for ones emotions through destructive elements. The middle level is using outside elements like our jobs, clothes, standing in the community and our spouses. The greatest level is to cater for our own emotions from within.

Where do we see this last level playing itself out each week?

On Friday night when we bless our kids. The blessing we give to our boys is to be like Joseph’s sons, Menashe and Ephraim. Why them? Why not Abraham or Moses?

Think about all the sibling rivalry with Cain and Abel, Jacob and Esau and with Joseph and his brothers. Menashe and Ephraim were the first two brothers to get along, even though Jacob gave the greater blessing to the younger brother, Ephraim, there was no protest from Menashe, not a word.

The healthiest way to raise children is to teach them that they are unique and beautiful and that no two children are the same.

Menashe understood his uniqueness, he felt confident, worthy and significant. He was living from within, not relying on outside elements.

Consequently, he understood that if Jacob didn’t give him the greater blessing, then he obviously didn’t need it in order to be the best Menashe.

That is why we bless our sons to be like Menashe and Ephraim, emotionally healthy and living their uniqueness, thriving from within.

Tragically, unlike Menashe and Ephraim, most of us are not independent when it comes to our emotions and are living life in the middle level.

Kitov is a registered charity that is entirely focused on relationships and have successfully been dealing with this challenge for the past four years.

At Kitov we educate and engage individuals and couples with ideas that will improve any relationship.

Through Kitov’s seminars, weekends away and one to one sessions we show people how to access life from within, to embrace their uniqueness and to experience the third level of emotional fulfilment.

This enables people to cater to those much craved emotions from within, so they do not have to rely on outside factors, spouses, fiancés and partners.

The less you need from your partner, the more you will be able to give. That is the secret to a blissful relationship.

To quote the inspirational Nick Vuijic, ‘Life is not about having, it’s about being’.

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