The Higher Stages of Couple Love

Jeff Salzman Free, Love & Intimacy, Perspectives, The Daily Evolver, Video Leave a Comment


This is a sequel to last year’s popular Valentine episode featuring Dr. Tom Habib. An integrally-inspired clinical psychologist specializing in couples therapy, Tom has mapped what he calls the “couple’s line of development,” which describes the predictable stages a couple typically grows through — and where they may get stalled.

The adventure of love generally starts with sexual chemistry and illusions of safety, an intoxicating stage that some people replay through multiple partners. At the next stage a more committed couple seeks to build a life together by assuming roles such as mother/father or provider/supporter. If they are able grow into the third stage, it will be into some form of relational partnership based on a flexible roles and mutual respect.

In this episode Tom focuses on top two stages of couple development, which he calls first love and spiritual love. First love corresponds with integral development and is created by an active appreciation of one’s partner, as well as the intentional development of a we-space in which more aspects of each person are embraced. Spiritual love emerges as we grow together beyond personal indentification and find within each other the eternal Beloved.

Tom’s vision is both beautiful and instructive in helping us to grow in mutuality with our intimate partners.

Tom Habib joins us from his home in San Juan Capistrano, California. You can find more of his work at dr.tomhabib.com.

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About Jeff Salzman

Jeff Salzman worked with Ken Wilber for several years in building the Integral Institute. He is a co-founder of Boulder Integral, the first bricks-and-mortar venue dedicated to the development of integral consciousness. These days Jeff provides integrally-inspired commentary on politics and culture on Integral Life and The Daily Evolver.

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