The search for salvation takes place outside of your interior experience. Savior searching is the effort to locate an individual or circumstance that can deliver you from your discomfort. The search may be for a perfect mate, home, job, or automobile. It may be for money,fame,education, a slim or muscular body. The salvation appears to come from different sources for different people. In no case does the salvation come from within.
Romantic attraction is the experience of locating a savior. She has everything that you need to complete your life. He is charming, strong, handsome, and capable. She is warm, caring, gracious, and lovely. The attraction is to the capability that the individual has to solve your problems, eliminate your inner struggles, and bring your experience to a new level of comfort.
The breakdown of romantic attraction – the end of the honeymoon- begins when the savior cannot deliver. Since both individuals in a romantic attraction view the other as a savior, this disillusionment is shared. Each sees in the other characteristics that were not visible previously, such as a quick temper, melancholy inclination, fear of expression, insensitivities, and vulnerabilities. These characteristics were present throughout the romantic attraction. As they become visible, the illusion of salvation in the form of another individual begins to unravel.
The more it unravels, the more the discomforts that occupied your attention before the romantic attraction reappear. Your life continues, but with the addition of a companion. Your jealousy, fear of people, anger, and self-doubt return. They disappeared during the romantic attraction. The promise of salvation- like a morning fog- obscured them, but did not remove them. When the fog evaporated, they were still there. They will continue to be there until you address them.
The search for salvation takes your attention away from what you feel and places it on external circumstances. Emotional awareness is put aside. Your anticipation of a life without pain temporarily replaces the pain that you feel. That is the power of a romantic attraction- the promise of permanent release from pain. You place upon your saviors the responsibility for doing the work that only you can do. Your work remains undone.
When you feel you may be looking for a savior again,stop and feel what you are feeling. Then ask yourself this question, ” Do I feel this person, situation, or thing is the answer to my well-being?”
This is the pursuit of external power. You achieve,dress and speak to influence others. You strive manipulate and control them through your appearance, the things that you own, your skills, aptitudes, and accomplishments. You value yourself only as much as they value you. When others do not approve of you, your sense of well-being diminishes or disappears. When they appreciate you, you feel grand. Romantic attraction mutually fulfills the need of both participants to be appreciated. It allows them to feel buoyant. They appear to themselves as attractive. They feel sexual. Their walk is lighter, they laugh more easily, and they enjoy their lives.
When the romance ends, they plummet into despair and self-doubt. They rage or withdraw. These, also, are attempts to manipulate and control. They hope to regain the affection that they have lost, and the self-image that accompanied it. External power can be lost, gained, inherited, earned, and won. It comes and goes. She loves me; she loves me not. The difference is joy and exuberance on the one hand and pain on the other.
Every attempt to place your salvation in the hands of another individual is an attempt to escape from painful emotions. You relinquish responsibility for your emotions and their creation. You look upon yourself as a victim and depend upon someone or something to save you. You see your painful emotions as punishment, unjust or random. You attempt to separate your intentions, thoughts, words, and actions from your emotional experiences.