Whenever I’m invited to be the celebrant of someone’s wedding, there are three key questions I ask them to answer prior to making plans for the wedding ceremony.
The first question asks them about their vision of their marriage, about their relationship together. I invite them to consider the dreams of who they see themselves becoming and how much room for becoming have they allowed for themselves.
Becoming is a state of being that invokes a vision of the future. It invokes the unfolding potential expression of who we can be. This is an important question because if couples haven’t considered the state of becoming as having a major influence in their lives and marriage, they will often find themselves feeling betrayed. “He wasn’t like this when we got married” … “I don’t know who she is anymore – that didn’t used to matter to her”. The values and ‘vows’ they make to each other now must have enough intention, awareness and commitment to the space of who they are yet to become. The language must include a level of openness, invitation and inclusivity in the shared sense of vision, of purpose and values that will take them into an unknown future when life brings them what they didn’t imagine.
The second question asks them about who they are now – with each other as well as on their own. I invite them to note the goals and shared values which support connection, intimacy and trust with each other in this journey they are choosing together here and now. It is both delightful and challenging to share one’s most innermost self with another. This state of being is here and now. It’s the fullness of the moment and all that one is right here, right now. I invite them to sink into, to truly become vulnerable to each other at the level of their truth and be together. If they can’t be together here and now, how will they survive the ‘becoming’ together in marriage?
And finally, the third question asks them to consider the community who supports and joins them in their being here and now and who holds a positive vision of their becoming together. We never get anywhere by ourselves. Business leaders affirm this wisdom, as do educators, politicians and spiritual leaders. We know that you need a ‘village to raise a child’ because the responsibilities, skills, challenges and blessings to raise a child require a whole community. It requires a community to bear witness, affirm and support this incredible life adventure. No less so for marriage success.
With thoughtful responses to these three questions, we then begin to discuss the ceremony, the rituals of joy, blessing and meaning. We talk about this ceremony as one that goes with them as an ongoing blessing, rather than a one-day event.
These same questions or variations thereof, share many of my conversations with people in soul coaching and whole life therapies sessions, in Reiki practice and meditation training, and now in Peace Circle.
When we share heart-felt stories in Peace Circle, we often weave between the worlds of being and becoming, between the presence of the moment and the vision of our best future. The power of circle is the compassionate, confidential, listening and truth-centred speaking qualities of being community together as we weave between these states of being and becoming.
On Friday, I attended the annual general meeting of my professional organization where the president spoke to the experience and value of ‘communitas’ in our organization. In her address, Christina Becker stated:
Communitas refers to the unstructured state in which all members of a community are equal allowing each member to share a common experience, usually through a rite of passage. This is different from the structure of community and its secular roles. Communitas reflects that element of a shared experienced which verges on the sacred.
We are standing at one of the most challenging crossroads in human history. Our past is unable to predict our future because there is so much change. I can’t help wonder where the ‘communitas’ is within the society and where we will find it moving forward.
It is this ‘communitas’ that couples require to be vibrant and supported in their marriages. It is this ‘communitas’ that I experience in our monthly Reiki gatherings. It is this ‘communitas’ I envision in our Peace Circle as visionaries gather to create new stories, transform old stories and express their best stories of who they are. It is also this ‘communitas’ that is necessary for visionaries who are committed to become leaders of ‘peace on earth’ in ourselves, in our world, with each other and with all sentient beings because life is changing so fast. The spirit of community in Peace Circle is not just a one time event.
This spirit of love, vision and peace weaves and moves like the Great Circle of Creation empowering and transforming our being and becoming as together we create and build peace on earth. Let’s start sharing our ‘being’ together so we can inspire the best ‘becoming’ together on our incredible planet.