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Love Between Equals: Relationship as a Spiritual Path

April 17 @ 7:30 pm - 9:30 pm

Friday Talk:

We want a new kind of love in the 21st century. In relationships, we want to be treated as equals and to be seen and known for ourselves. Equal and reciprocal love between adults, in marriage and committed partnerships, is in many ways more problematic and unhappy now than ever, after decades of struggle for gender equality and sexual freedom. Marriage has moved from being a vow of impersonal loyalty (“in sickness and in health, until death do us part”) to a vow of personal desire (“as long as this meets my needs”). 21st century love requires new psychological and spiritual skills that are go beyond secure attachment or “improved communication.”

This presentation introduces you to “personal love” and its unfolding from falling in love into disillusionment and toxic unconscious communication, and finally into the path of true love as a mindfulness practice. Wanting to be respected, cared for, and witnessed by a partner whom you do not control offers both the opportunity for psychological development and the potential for escape into addictions. As we will see, chronic projective identification requires the creation of a “mindful space” in which partners relate as adults who recognize and take responsibility for their own thoughts and feelings.

Related Workshop: Love Between Equals: Relationship as as Spiritual Path

Polly Young-Eisendrath, Ph.D.,  is a Jungian analyst, psychologist, and psychotherapist in private practice. She is Clinical Associate Professor of Psychiatry at the University of Vermont and the founder and director of the Institute for Dialogue Therapy. She is past president of the Vermont Association for Psychoanalytic Studies and a founding member of the Vermont Institute for the Psychotherapies. Polly is also the chairperson of Enlightening Conversations, a series of conversational conferences which bring together participants from the front lines of Buddhism and psychoanalysis. Polly has published sixteen books, as well as many chapters and articles, that have been translated into more than twenty languages, including The Self-Esteem Trap: Raising Confident and Compassionate Kids in an Age of Self-Importance and Love Between Equals: Relationship as a Spiritual Path.

Purchase Workshops


April 17
7:30 pm - 9:30 pm
We offer Continuing Education Credit through NASW. The fee for CEU credit is $5 for the lecture, $10 for the workshop, or $10 for both the lecture and workshop. To obtain credits, please sign up before each lecture or workshop at the CEU table in the lobby.


Unity Church of Portland
4525 SE Stark
Portland, OR 97202 United States
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Ample free parking.


Unlimited available
Friday Talk: Young-Eisendrath - Love Between Equals$20.00