Marriage

I am acutely aware of the fact that the marriage between mathematics and physics, which was so enormously fruitful in past centuries, has recently ended in divorce.

Without love, marriage becomes, for man or for woman, a source of gratification, of conflict, of fear and pain. Love comes into being only when the self is absent. Without love, relationship is sorrow, however physically exciting it might be; such relationship breeds contention and frustration, habit and routine. Without love there can be no chastity, and sex becomes an all-consuming problem.

Art is a marriage of the conscious and the unconscious.

When people get married because they think it's a long-time love affair, they'll be divorced very soon, because all love affairs end in disappointment. But marriage is a recognition of a spiritual identity.

The problem of unmet expectations in marriage is primarily a problem of stereotyping. Each and every human being on this planet is a unique person. Since marriage is inevitably a relationship between two unique people, no one marriage is going to be exactly like any other. Yet we tend to wed with explicit visions of what a “good” marriage ought to be like. Then we suffer enormously from trying to force the relationship to fit the stereotype and from the neurotic guilt and anger we experience when we fail to pull it off.

No long-term marriage is made easily, and there have been times when I've been so angry or so hurt that I thought my love would never recover. And then, in the midst of near despair, something has happened beneath the surface. A bright little flashing fish of hope has flicked silver fins and the water is bright and suddenly I am returned to a state of love again — till next time. I've learned that there will always be a next time, and that I will submerge in darkness and misery, but that I won't stay submerged. And each time something has been learned under the waters; something has been gained; and a new kind of love has grown. The best I can ask for is that this love, which has been built on countless failures, will continue to grow. I can say no more than that this is mystery, and gift, and that somehow or other, through grace, our failures can be redeemed and blessed.

The marriage bed is the most degenerating influence in the social order.

The major problem of life is learning how to handle the costly interruptions. The door that slams shut, the plan that got sidetracked, the marriage that failed. Or that lovely poem that didn't get written because someone knocked on the door.

It is not possible for one person to meet all of another's needs and marriage partners who expect this soon find each other wanting.

You tend to have far more real, intense friendships when you are single, perhaps because you can be more honest when you do not have the marriage or someone else's feelings to protect.

If one of the problems of marriage is that safety can lead to complacency, then one of the advantages of being single is that one is never safe enough to grow complacent, and constantly having to prove oneself often leads to growth.

A good marriage would be between a blind wife and a deaf husband.

People often feel unable to get out of a distasteful or unhappy situa-
tion. They assume they are trapped in a job, in a community, in a
marriage, family, or a way of life. They do not see the alternatives
of looking for a new job or improving the one they have, of moving
out of the community, of changing their marriage patterns, of break-
ing off a relationship, or of loving and disciplining their children
more effectively. They limit their perception of the problem, not
seeing possible options or an obvious solution. They use one narrow
approach and repeat this approach over and over even though it
obviously does not resolve or change the situation.

None of this can actually be happening. If it makes you more comfortable, you could simply think if it as metaphor. Religions are, by definition, metaphors, after all: God is a dream, a hope, a woman, an ironist, a father, a city, a house of many rooms, a watchmaker who left his prize chronometer in the desert, someone who loves you - even, perhaps, against all evidence, a celestial being whose only interest is to make sure your football team, army, business, or marriage thrives, prospers and triumphs overall opposition.

Religions are places to stand and look and act, vantage points from which to view the world.

So none of this is happening. Such things could not occur. Never a word of it is literally true. Even so, the next thing that happened, happened like this...

Religions are, by definition, metaphors, after all: God is a dream, a hope, a woman, an ironist, a father, a city, a house of many rooms, a watchmaker who left his prize chronometer in the desert, someone who loves you - even, perhaps, against all evidence, a celestial being whose only interest is to make sure your football team, army, business, or marriage thrives, prospers, and triumphs over all opposition.

Man's new sense of pity began to interfere with the ruthless workings of nature. The only method compatible with our notions of civilization and the race is to prevent the breeding of the unfit by sterilization and the deliberate guidance of the mating instinct . The trend of opinion among eugenists is that we must make marriage more difficult. Certainly no one who is not a desirable parent should be permitted to produce progeny. A century from now it will no more occur to a normal person to mate with a person eugenically unfit than to marry a habitual criminal.

Life is insecurity and nothing is wrong in it. In fact, life cannot be otherwise. Death is secure, life is insecure. Marriage is secure, love is insecure. Marriage is dead, love is alive. The more alive you are the more your life remains in insecurity, because the livelier person will be exploring the unknown, he will be adventurous. It is life’s nature, its law, its very intrinsic soul. But the priest has exploited it. He has given you consolations, securities, insurances, not only for this life but for future lives too. He says, “Don’t be worried. If you follow a certain code of conduct, if you cultivate a certain character, if you follow the commandments given in the scriptures, then you need not be afraid. Then God is going to reward you. You will be punished only if you go against the convention, against the tradition.

What maintains the marriage and what is it? Only the knowledge of the hearts, that is its beginning and end.

Love makes fools, marriage cuckolds and patriotism malevolent imbeciles.

That is what marriage really means helping one another to reach the full status of being persons, responsible and autonomous beings who do not run away from life.