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Failure of the Dream

I was reading an article by Amrit Desai wherein he discussed optimal disillusionment. A few paragraphs really caught my eye:

We tend to believe that love ends when dreams are demolished. In reality, the shattering of dreams is the opportunity for the emergence of true love. . . in these situations, what is perceived to be the failure of the relationship is, in reality, the failure of the dream . . those who are committed to spiritual growth are determined to use the failure of the dream as an opportunity to enter into an authentic relationship. 

We all let each other down. Institutions and organizations, like people, can disappoint. Ideally, we get let down softly, gently. This is what psychologists call "optimal disillusionment." It's a gradual process. Not as painful as say "ripping off a band-aid," or some huge, shocking revelation.

I like this idea. Burn down the dream so you can build on reality. Since reality is the truth, why would you want to build your mansion on anything else?

I think of my many relationships where the failure of the dream was devastating. In fact, I can say my first marriage is a case in point. The failure of the dream led to the demolishment of our marriage. Love did seem to end. I can now see, in hindsight, how an authentic relationship could have emerged out of the ashes of our dreams.

I'm grateful I could carry these lessons into my new relationships. Relationships don't die. Dreams do. So expect disillusionment for any time you get intimate--truly up close and personal--with anyone or anything--people or organizations--you are going to get close enough to see the imperfections. The dreams will die, but remember the failure of the dream will lead to deeper, more meaningful relationships and experiences.

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