In my theory of Selfhood, I identify three fundamental constituents that define who we are when there’s no audience. Joy, belongingness, and companionship. But how can they exist in the absence of someone else? I argue that, rather than finding these conditions in otherness, we bring them to a relationship as coauthors: we offer as much as receive.
In the terrain of Selfhood, joy is determined by the significance we give our actions, belongingness requires permission for inclusion, and companionship is the quality of how we treat ourselves when no one is looking. These three attributes need to be cultivated before we enter a relationship. If not, we sustain the delusion that otherness is giving us something we lack.
But, although Selfhood thrives when it attains competence in these three domains, a partner expands the horizons of meaning by allowing Me to experience You as Us. Then We, becomes potentiality for the best in US. I can be at peace with my aloneness without loneliness, but when you enter my world, peace is elevated to passion.
We can be sufficient in our Selfhood, and If love enters our path, we can move mountains. But if love never comes our way, we can let the mountains cry for us without losing faith in our journey. Such is the way of the Drift.
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