According to Plato, humans began with four legs, four arms and one head with two faces. To punish us for our pride, Zeus took a lightning bolt and divided man in two, causing us to mourn and walk the Earth in misery longing for the other half of our soul. According to the legend, when we find our soul mate, we will know the moment our eyes meet. We will have a total and complete understanding of each other and when we come together, we will know no greater love or joy.
The idea of a soul mate has been romanticized in movies and books. It has been the topic of discussion in dorm rooms and reception halls. The Internet is filled with article after article describing how you can find your soul mate and how you can know him when you find him. I, on the other hand, am going to say something a little unconventional and declare to the world that we need to stop looking for our soul mate. I didn't marry my soul mate and neither should you.
Here are six reasons why I didn't marry my soul mate.
1. I am not half a person and neither is he
I am an intelligent, confident woman. I was 24 when I got married and I did not in any way feel that I was lacking as a person. I have my own opinions, my own ideas, my own talents and my own goals in life. Many of those are different than my husband's. He is an intelligent confident man. He has his own opinions, ideas, talents and goals. Some of our interests overlap, some of them don't. That is because we are both whole people. We do not need the other one to complete us. We complement one another instead.
2. I do not need anyone else to make me happy
If you are looking for someone outside of yourself for your own happiness, then you are going to be in a lifetime of trouble. Happiness comes from within and if you believe that finding a soul mate is going to automatically make your miserable life a happy one, you are going to be disappointed. Not only is this unrealistic, but it is unhealthy. You begin to think that if the person you find isn't making you happy, then he must not be your soul mate. That kind of thinking is dangerous because you will forever be looking for others to make you happy instead of looking inside yourself. You are the only one who holds the key to your happiness.
3. Every marriage takes work
According to Plato, soul mates will have a complete and total understanding of each other and will be completely unified. This is a very dangerous belief to have when coming into a marriage. In even the best of marriages, there will be disagreements. It is bound to happen when two separate people come together to build a life as a couple. There are going to be times when he is not going to understand why she is crying again and there are going to be times when she is not going to understand why he can't possibly miss the big game. No marriage is void of the difficulties that come from two worlds coming together. All marriages take work, even the good ones. That's what makes them so good.
4. I am in charge of my own destiny
My happiness is not determined upon me finding the one person out of the 7 billion people living on this Earth who is supposed to be my other half. My happiness is dependent upon my choices here and now with the man I chose to marry. I made a commitment to him on the day that I married him that I would share my life with him. That means that every day I would continue to make the same choice. What I do both in and outside my marriage very much defines not only who I am but what my marriage will be. It is up to me to decide if my marriage will be successful. Of course, my husband's choices also come into play, but the future of our marriage is very much dependent on us and not on destiny.
5. Life is not about coming together, but growing together
According to Plato, when we come together with our soul mate, we are finally whole. The cycle is complete and we live together in unity, love and perfect joy. The day I married my husband was the first day of the rest of our lives together, but it was anything but complete. In these 14 years we have lived together, we have learned together, laughed together, loved together, and grown together. Like two vines intertwined and reaching upward, we are ever growing, reaching, expanding and developing into something greater. As our hearts and lives weave closer and closer together, we are slowly becoming one. Both time and patience have been our greatest allies.
6. Zeus is a myth but God is real
I truly believe all the talk and fascination on soul mates is Satan's way of distracting us from the truth. If he can make us believe that there is only one person out there for us who we can truly be happy with, we will never know that true and lasting love and happiness can be found when God, our Heavenly Father, and His Son Jesus Christ, are the foundations of our home and our marriage. When we learn to put their truth and teachings first in our lives, and learn to live by their spirit, we will not only know love, but we will know a pure and lasting love, a love that will span beyond this life and live through the eternities.
I didn't marry my soul mate. I married my best friend.