Are you a good lover? I am talking Lover, like the Archetype, not asking about your physical prowess!
What’s an archetypal Lover? Well, we all have our personal unconscious that is made up of our personal experiences. Our behavior is governed by the meaning we make from these experiences. We are also influenced by the collective unconscious. This is the energy of all humankind since the dawn of Man. The archetypal Lover comes from the collective unconscious and lives within us all.
You can think of all archetypes as being a triad. The shadow has a positive and negative side. When I say positive an negative, I don’t mean good and bad. I am talking about polarity, like masculine and feminine. Then there is a healthy version.
The positive Lover is also called the Addicted Lover. This energy is eternally restless, searching for that one thing that will make him feel alive. He’s romantic and has a hunger that is never satisfied because his expectations are unrealistic or he doesn’t know what he wants. He falls in love with everyone then despairs when it doesn’t work out. This lover collects experiences but doesn’t connect with them. He obsessed with objects of desire. He is always on the chase, but is never satisfied. This Lover is too much.
The negative Lover is also called the Impotent Lover. He is just the opposite. This guy has either been burned by love or fears never finding it, so he spends a lot of energy withholding love or keeping it at bay. He sees only grey in life and is often negative. He’s got no passion for life, no libido, and too much discipline. He can be prudish, and doesn’t allow himself to enjoy all that life has to offer. This Lover is too little.
These shadows live within all of us. Even if we shine and stand in our strength most of the time, we don’t “grow out of” our shadow. We live in a dualistic universe, so “darkness” can never be conquered. It is a part of the fabric of being. So, if you find yourself expressing your Lover archetype in one of these ways, just be mindful of it. Learn that there is another way of being and strive to live in that path more often.
The healthy Lover is a lover of life, family, friends, and God. He’s just right. He expresses emotion, feeling, idealism, and sensuality. He feels alive and connected to the world. He’s intuitive, empathic, and social. He doesn’t withhold love nor does he confine it to its physical expression. He doesn’t chase it because there is confidence that it’s always here and there is always enough.
When you are a healthy lover, life is juicier. You see love in sunrise, a baby’s smile, your partner’s eyes, freshly washed fruit, or the dew on a blade of grass. It’s not just about romance. It’s about life. And being a good lover doesn’t only benefit you. Since the collective unconscious is made up of every one’s experiences, as you become more healthy, your energy creates a present moment that makes everyone else healthier too. When you are a good Lover, every breath becomes an act of love making.
How to Become a Good Lover
Many times we go through life asleep. We aren’t aware of our growth points because we aren’t paying attention. We don’t know how we feel. Maybe we don’t know what we think. We blame other people. We go through the motions. Or sometimes we’re just numb. When you practice mindfulness, you’re more self-aware so you are more likely to be able to say, “Hey, I am in my shadow. What do I want to do now?”
Talk to your Lover
Talk to your Lover through journaling. When you see that your Lover has been out to play, whether this has been in an affirming way or a non-affirming way, writer to her. Tell her what you saw. Tell her how it impacted you. Be curious about what made her show up in the way that she did. Ask her for forgiveness, tenderness, understanding, courage, or whatever it is that you need to help you. Remember that all archetypes exist to empower you. Even when they seem destructive, their purpose is to teach, express, protect, or do something beneficial for you.
Listen to your Lover
When you are finished writing to your Lover, take a deep breath. Clear your head. Read what you wrote, and respond as if your Lover is writing a reply. Really get into the head of your Lover. Let her speak. Then listen to what she says. This may seem fanciful, but you always have the key to understanding and healing yourself. Always.
Use This Information
Once you have have some dialog on paper, read it. Use this information to help you get to know yourself better. If your Lover has given you some helpful information, act on it. If your Lover hasn’t given you helpful information, become better at observing and asking questions. Get curious. This often leads to much better responses than approaching from a judgmental or emotional stand point.
If you don’t get great answers right away, be patient. Sometimes you need to develop a relationship before your inner Lover will give you useful information. She may not trust you. Be patient. It will come.