The Unreachable Star; Polyamory and Growth
by Somerset

Somerset is a man in his seventies who has only recently begun to search for compatible women for open relationships. He prefers sexual variety and treasures his independence. This is the second in his Potentially Polyamorous series, in which he explores open relationships. The entire series is archived for reference.

In response to a question about monogamy, Bishop John Shelby Spong, while admitting that “I do not think that monogamy is natural, especially among males of any of the higher mammals,” recently said, “I would not trade the depth of love and trust that a monogamous relationship creates for anything,” adding, “I do not believe the pathway to that deep human experience can be found in multiple relationships.” In this article I’ll offer a few reflections on these comments.

The moot points (taking quotes from Spong) are these: Is it possible, is it practical, for some persons, male or female, to be able to have an “ultimate” relationship, to have an “ultimate level of commitment” with more than one lover concurrently? Is it possible or practical for a polyamorous relationship to elicit “in those who follow it, a new dimension of consciousness that makes them more deeply and fully human”? Can the polyamorous find such new dimensions of consciousness? What might these be?

In an interview with Jessica Roemischer, titled "Sex, Immortality, and the Future of Women," Barbara Marx Hubbard stated that she could discern a “new perspective on the postmenopausal years,” one that may provide “a higher evolutionary purpose for sex beyond that of reproduction,” one that could engender “a new being - sensitive to spirit, capable of self-healing, self-generating, and self-evolving.” She coined the term “regenopause” for this phenomenon.

I accept the possibility that a high quality polyamorous relationship, at a high level of commitment, is entirely feasible for some persons, young or old, so that this possibility does not necessarily have to wait for the postmenopausal years. Are ultimate levels possible? I don’t think so, at least not during this lifetime. Are higher levels possible? I think they are, but they’re generally not easy to attain. The issues that are involved within polyamorous relationships are extensive and are certainly not for the faint-hearted or the insensitive.

An important ingredient in human relationships is that they enhance opportunities for the partners to grow. Because each partner is, in essence, an individual, growing at his or her own pace and in her or his own way, physically, mentally, and spirituality, the time will almost invariably come, in almost all relationships, for each partner to wish to grow in some ways that differ from the preferred ways of their partner. The question then arises: Is it necessary, for the physiological and psychological health of the partners, that they separate?

I would say, “not necessarily.” They still have the option of expanding their relationship to include others. The Christian scriptures say that we should love our neighbor as ourself. The questions I've noted become particularly relevant for polyamorous persons who don’t want to have children, are beyond childbearing age, are separated or widowed, or who simply prefer to live the single life. I accept the possibility that, in special circumstances, the term “love”, in that context, may include intimacy with more than one person concurrently.

I’m striving to be worthy of the challenges of a higher calling, based upon polyamory, as circumstances emerge that make that lifestyle appropriate and uplifting. For most of us, most of the time, this may seem to be an impossible dream. Do some of us have the wisdom, the perseverance, the sensitivity, the spiritual courage, to reach that unreachable star?

I would like to think so.