Hum Same-Same Hain

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Are Same Tastes and Likes Really Important in a Marriage?

“We like the same things, it’s like we were made for each other,” announced a chirpy twenty-five year old newly married bride. Her eyes widened as saucers at the implied divine intervention working overtime to find her a ‘match made-in-heaven’. Her husband looked on visibly smitten by his wife, wearing perfectly colour coordinated, mauve Chinese-collar shirt to match his trophy wife’s skirt. Who picked up the shirt was an easy guess. I smiled benignly, although thoroughly confused as to how long the phase of sameness and seeming agreement would last? and how would they face the reality once it comes out – (after the mating rituals are met) that they are two perfectly functional individuals with tastes which perhaps might not be as ‘same’ after all and that it was perfectly ‘fine’ to be different.

Even Siamese-twins, given the fact they are made up of literally the same cells, and get same environment at home, have a distinctive individual personality. So why is it that when the question of choosing a life partner comes along, we get obsessed with finding one who has the exact same tastes and likings? I understand that there has to be some common ground for two individuals to like each other and consequently fall in love. But if we just marry mirror images of ourselves, doesn’t that make us narcissistic and perennially self-obsessed?

The famous Ying-Yang to Ardhnarishwar (the composite androgynous form of the Hindu god Shiva and his consort Parvati) celebrates the perfection in differences. They try to show us that true completeness can be rewarding and should be celebrated by acceptance of the said differences. So why is that in real life the moment a spouse (either one) seeks his/ her own individuality by displaying their disdain over the other’s choice the person is called insensitive and a more common dialogue then rules the larger part of the marriage “Tum badal gaye ho” (you have changed). To which I feel what a correct response would be – darling he/ she was always like this, but you saw what you wanted to see (a Robert Pattinson with taunt biceps, or a Jennifer Lawrence in bikini)

So take life partner’s difference of choice in your stride rather than fight and cry over them. Celebrate them. Rise as an individual rather than as a shadow or the controller. Now that’s fun. Isn’t it? I want to share what Khali Gibran said about marriage and the subtle beauty of individual growth which feeds it.

On Marriage
Kahlil Gibran

Love one another, but make not a bond of love:
Let it rather be a moving sea between the shores of your souls.
Fill each other’s cup but drink not from one cup.
Give one another of your bread but eat not from the same loaf
Sing and dance together and be joyous, but let each one of you be alone,
Even as the strings of a lute are alone though they quiver with the same music.

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