From time-to-time we meet someone special with whom we share an instant and intense connection.
It can feel as though we recognise their soul, a look in their eyes, or their energy powerfully magnetises us to them.
There may be various things that attract us to a certain someone: It may be the tone of their voice, how they dress, the smell of their skin or something significant that is said that sparks a flame deep inside which very quickly turns into a raging inferno.
All too often these are the first signs we are about to engage in a karmic relationship.
The person feels very familiar and we feel as though we have known them before—possibly from a previous life, which can feel very alien, especially if we do not believe in reincarnation.
We often get these feelings with certain friendships, but when it happens with a love interest the attraction and emotions are heightened to a new level. We may feel cravings to be in their company, to get to know more about them and to discover why their soul just seems to slot straight into the jigsaw puzzle next to our own.
A karmic relationship may often be abusive, either verbally or physically, and it is up to us to ask ourselves why we are accepting this behaviour and ask ourselves why do we feel so unworthy that we are allowing someone else to treat us so badly.
We cannot point the finger at anyone else, we must look at ourselves to discover why we are giving people a place in our lives if they are not deserving of it. Other people’s treatment of us ia a reflection of who we are, so when we let someone into our lives and allow them to treat us badly, we are not caring or loving ourselves enough on the inside, as otherwise we would remove ourselves from them as a means of protection.
Often negative behaviours can feel comfortable and familiar, as we may have experienced them at an early stage of our lives. Just because we recognise them and they resonate with something inside us, does not mean that we should be accepting them now that we have the choice to walk away.
Anger and rage may also be very common behaviours in a karmic relationship and it could feel as though any small thing can rub us the wrong way to cause an illicit and irrational response. Again, this is due to past experiences triggering similar responses.
It is imperative to learn why we are allowing ourselves to behave in such ways and to look inside ourselves to find out what we have tucked away that is preventing us from having a calm, peaceful and loving relationship. We cannot blame others for our reactions. It is entirely up to us to acknowledge our behaviours, heal the hurt and change our wiring, responses and perception so that we stop allowing past experiences to influence our present.
We may try to gain some control over the relationship by using emotional manipulation or temper tantrums to get our own way. This is very often because we are in fear that we are going to be hurt in some way and we wrongly believe that we can control situations as a way of avoiding pain and trauma. It is the opposite. We cause more pain to ourselves by holding on too tightly to something that realistically we have very little control over. We cannot control someone else’s feelings towards us and it is not our place to control someone else’s life.
Finding out what it is that we are so afraid of and healing the parts of us that feel so insecure is the way to remove control. Often low self-esteem and self-worth are responsible for controlling behaviours. Similarly with jealousy and possessiveness. All of these traits will very likely rear their head in karmic relationships, with each one of them being a result of a lack of inner belief and worth.
Rather than allowing relationships to replay all our battles again and again and letting our demons surface, we must take a good look at why these feelings of resentment and bitterness are simmering underneath in the first place. When we do this we can acknowledge the emotions, give love, care and attention to them and accept that we are a blend of darkness and light and it is okay to have these feelings, as long as we have power over them and not the other way around.
When we are in a karmic relationship it will feel very different from a soul mate relationship, as we will constantly be questioning our reason for staying. It is as though we know we have lessons to learn and patterns to break and we choose this partner as a way of helping us to understand more about ourselves by role-playing different characters until the answers are unveiled.
The relationship will likely not feel authentic and there will be very little trust, loyalty or respect for each other, as we won’t see the other person as a life-partner or someone who is going to be a permanent part of our lives. This sounds like a very selfish type of relationship, and in many ways, and at various levels, it is. The relationship is a stepping-stone to reach the next stage and there will be an underlying resentment for one another for showing us who we are, when we are very often not ready to see it.
These types of relationships are very common when we have a lot of work to do on ourselves and when we are functioning on a very low frequency. These relationships push us through what we previously believed were our limits and test our extremes so we are compelled to search for our true purpose and meaning for our lives.
It is very often through a karmic relationship that we learn more about what we do want from a future relationship as we learn more about ourselves and as we experience the struggles of working through a relationship with someone who is not right for us.
When we have completed our cycle of karmic connections and stopped attracting repetitive lessons we will have an awareness and a profound sense of what it is we want and need out of our lives. Some people may work through karmic love relationships very quickly and attract a soul mate, however they will possibly still attract karmic friendships or be in karmic battles with family members.
We all have different lessons to learn and each lesson will present to us in its own unique way. Recognising it and understanding it so that we are fully conscious to the reason for it being in our lives is the most powerful way we can break it down so we understand and resolve it rather than keep playing out the same script, just with a different cast.
The relationships we have around us should be healthy and nourishing ones and until we are fully aware and awakened as to what it is we have to learn and why we seem to be on repeat, we will remain stuck in the same cycle playing out the same patterns time and again.
All this being said, it does not mean karmic relationships cannot turn into loving, genuine soul mate connections; it just means that a lot of self-acceptance, awareness and inner work needs to be done before it can move into this stage.
A karmic relationship can be difficult to break free from as they can feel addictive and we may feel compelled to stay to work through the patterns, untangle the mess and unravel our stories together. However, unless both people are prepared to do the work, it can just mean finding ourselves tied in a tighter knot. These relationships are not our destiny, they are not our fate, they are simply our past being presented to us over and again until we learn what it is that we need to learn and are willing to make the right decisions for a balanced, healthy and chaos-free future.
Change can be difficult as lovers, friends and family members may want to remain in the character roles that they feel have been set out for them. When one person steps away from this, they have the choice to either let go and allow the other person to find their wings and fly or to rise up to the challenge so that they too can create the changes needed to thrive.
If we are not co-dependent and are not feeding off past trauma, we do not need a relationship to figure out our karmic debt, we are strong, secure, independent and capable of renewing and relieving ourselves from the debt alone.
All too often we are just terrified of that which is unfamiliar. However, when “unfamiliar” means breaking away from karmic relationships and finding a true and authentic relationship, we will find it to be the least terrifying, most beautifully peaceful, deliciously nourishing and overwhelmingly loving thing we will ever do for ourselves.
Author: Alex Myles
Editor: Travis May
Photo: Flickr/Yoel Ben-Avraham