Iyest Love I&I
I do think it can be successful, being in relations with partners outside Rastafari. Even within Rastafari there are people whose practices and views vary vastly. I think mostly finding the person you vibe with, see eye to eye with, feel mutual love and respect, feel you both build each other up, and so on, that's more important.
I have been in some relationships with men who are more on the end of Buddhism or of Ifa, or of Ethiopian Orthodox, and those relationships did not work out for totally separate reasons than the religious/spiritual aspects. Yet I found it very gratifying to learn about their spiritual views. And I have been in relationships with Rasta men, some of them very peaceful, some of them very egoistic. Those relationships didn't work out for reasons totally aside from the fact that we share Rastafari as a spiritual orientation.
Today I share a beautiful relationship with a Rastaman and I think our relationship does work for many reasons aside from sharing Rastafari in common. Actually I first met him before I even knew what Rastafari was, he was the original Rastaman for me haha, but he never did try to teach me or convert me, he just lived his own life and over time I made that trod totally separate from his influence, even when we were not together. I was 21, I was just a party girl, I was all kinds of living in babylon. After we got together I was off doing my own thing and then something in me shifted and he found me a year or two later, dreadlocks, Ital, living clean, and that was really where our relationship took a more serious turn, not because he would rather be with a Rastawomban but because I had reached a state of maturity where I could have a serious relationship.
And just sharing Rastafari does not even mean our Livity is the same. For example I am a very happy plant base eater and he is totally fine eating fish and sometimes egg or milk, he is not strict about it at all. It's something I just shrug and accept because the love and the kindness and the things we have faced together and support each other through are so much stronger to me than those details. And that's not to say the relationship is perfect. We do have challenges. We just always seem to make it past the hurdles and there is a deep connection that draws us together. I am sure were he some other religion and we still shared all those same feelings, the relationship would still work.
I guess the idea of soul mates is trite but when you have that union where you feel like just being together is heaven and you two are god and goddess together in unison, when you feel like you invented love and you're the two divine cosmic lovers of the universe haha sounds crazy but that's how I feel, I guess that is what soul mates means? And I think it transcends a lot, it transcends space and time, it transcends religions for sure - that's my experience. Who knows if it's even the same for everyone, who knows if it's even the same on his side, I'm not inside his mind so I can't say for him what his experience is like. But for me I know I would want to be with him even if he was like agnostic or another religion - as long as he still had that positivity and faith inside of him which is integral to who he is.
I remember when I went to Ethiopia, I was sad to leave him, thinking I would never see him again, and I was sad to find myself not pregnant because we had tried and I had wanted to take a piece of him with me even if he did not come with me. He told me at that time "As long as there's life, there's hope." Now we are here 8 years later and we've had multiple pregnancies and losses and now we're still working, seeing doctors, to have that child we were always trying for. So he was right, even though at the time I thought the chapter had closed on our love, life brought us together again. As long as there's life, there's hope. I'll never forget him saying that to me and it really is a picture of who he is. I think as long as he had that beautiful hope inside of him, regardless of the label he wanted to put on his religious orientation, I would want to be with him.
All of that to say yes - I think true love, deep love, everlasting and otherworldly and unconditional love, can happen outside Rastafari, and I hope all people can experience love on that level in their own relationships whether the religious/spiritual label is the same or not. And it's a daily thing and a constant thing to work at it, to come to greater compassion for each other, to learn to be more selfless and more empathetic and to get to know the person on a deeper and deeper and deeper level. At some point we're beyond religion, we're beyond flesh, we get to the point of seeing that person as a soul and just wanting that soul to be at peace and be a part of the healing of that soul's pain, and feeling mutual care on the same level. It's something I think can only happen with a mix of chemistry and timing and humility and patience and all of the magic in the universe that created love in the first place.
Garveys Africa I wish the I well on the journey to love, whether to Sudan or elsewhere, I know the I have the right womban out there that will inspire the I to even greater heights and even greater knowledge of self, and I hope for the I more Love and more Life in the union that is to come!
Selah Say I