Self-centered versus Ego-centered relations. Self-centered means that the focus is mainly on reflecting on the inner effects of the relation with the outside world and growth expectance is based on the development towards Unity and realizing True Nature. Ego-centered means that the focus is mainly on the outside world and the expectance of growth is based on satisfaction through material and immaterial goods, like money, power and status. Self-centered relations include the partner as a crucial part of the possibility to reflect, the other is the mirror. You appreciate the partner even if you do not like what you see from time to time but you respect and do not feel threatened by the personal grow process of the other. You can support that process in a, more or less, passive way like the bed supports a river.  The focus is personal growth for both and with it the relation will also grow. In this relation, the recognition of the Personal Essence of the other is what we can call Love. This is a strong motivator to continue exploring one’s own Soul’s experiences. Ego-centered relations are based on need. Where Self-centered relations enrich, the Ego-centered deprive. The focus is on gaining money, power and status related things. On the outside he or she may look like a successful person while on the inside the person is depleted from its Self. In an extreme Ego-centered relation  abuse of alcohol, drugs and domestic violence are likely, people use each other, blame each other and in the end often hatred is what leads to divorce. So much for what they called love in the beginning. Divorce is a way out but in fact nothing is resolved or gained unless there is serious reflecting on the personal contribution to the failed relation. In a non-extreme Ego-centered relation there is relatively little awareness on personal existence and development. People seem to accept how their life is floating in the doldrums, a little bit depressed, a little bit happy, a little bit dead and a little bit alive. Partners often have an unspoken agreement to not bother each other with all the’ little bits’. When one of the partners starts to express more desire for self development, this will bring nasty waves into the illusionary calm of the relation. This can be a wake-up call for the one who stayed behind and then the balance can start to shift from Ego centered to more Self-centered. It is obvious that most relations have a mixture of Ego and Self-centered characteristics. Here, affection plays an important role, it can help you to see what part of the other really affects you, and this teaches much about your true desire. Normally, what really affects you is the recognition of personal Essence in the other person, that is what we call love. Nevertheless, it is balancing on a high wire where we need to invest in awareness and reflection all the time. The main change is probably reflecting on you, yourself, in the situation - instead of blaming the other or the situation for your frustration of not achieving what you desire deep within. Understanding that you are responsible for all that happens in your life will help you to make inner changes, instead of sending you wife or husband, boss, child or dog away into the street and out of your life, take a time-out to look at yourself. Matheus Noordeloos
Soul-Care - Article