I often refer to this as The Soulmate Ceremony.
Soulmates and weddings. Some would think they were the same thing. After marrying almost 3000 couples I can definitely say that's not true. Marriage is a legal contract. Love is something that makes that legal contract easier to navigate and manage. Couples can have great love affairs and enriching relationships with or without a marriage certificate. Couples can also have a great marriage without talk of such love. Each and every couple defines this for themselves. Personally, I've followed the entire path of soulmates back to myself. The greatest true love affair anyone can have is with themselves. A lasting relationship is up to the individual.
This particular ceremony was written by a couple who did share the same passions. The groom was from overseas so they felt the hand of fate and destiny. I married them in their home that was filled with artwork they had both created. The words and the sentiment are beautiful.
Marriage symbolizes the intimate sharing of two lives. This sharing must not diminish, but enhance the individuality of each partner. You do not shed your individuality, for that is what brought you together in the first place. Marriage is the loving declaration that you should be no other than yourself.
A lasting marriage is not stagnant. The relationship and each individual are continually growing and developing. Your understanding of each other deepens and evolves. It is not this ceremony or the state of being married that will truly join and hold you together, but your ongoing commitment to your relationship and to the kind of life you wish to make together. In this way, your marriage will not be just a symbol; it will be more than that. It will be an action, something you work actively on every day.
We express this as a gift shared by these two people who are in love, but just as importantly, it is also intended to support, enhance and contribute to the relationship they have together and individually with each of their children.
Some thoughts about life and love by the incomparable Bob Marley:
Only once in your lifetime, I truly believe, you find someone who can completely turn your world around. You tell them things that you’ve never shared with a soul and they absorb everything you say, and actually want to hear more. You share hopes for the future, dreams that will never come true, goals that were never achieved and the many disappointments life has thrown at you. They are not embarrassed to cry with you or laugh. They build you up and show you the things about yourself that make you special. There is a quiet calmness when they are around. You can be yourself because they love you for all you are. In their presence, there’s no need for continuous conversation, and you are quite content. Things that never interested you before become fascinating. You open your heart, and experience a love and joy that you never dreamed possible. You find that being vulnerable is the only way to feel true pleasure and it’s so real it scares you. You find strength in knowing you have a true friend who will remain loyal to the end. Life seems completely different, exciting and worthwhile. Your only hope and security is in knowing that they are part of your life.
Groom would like to say a few personal words to Bride....
Bride would like to say a few personal words to Groom...
This is the point in the ceremony where we usually talk about the wedding bands being a perfect circle, with no beginning and no end. But we all know that these rings do have a beginning. Rock is dug up from the earth. Metal is liquefied in a furnace at a thousand degrees, then molded, cooled, and painstakingly polished. Something beautiful is made from raw elements. Love is like that. It comes from humble beginnings, made by imperfect beings. It's the process of making something beautiful where there was once nothing at all.
Bride and Groom to repeat during ring exchange:
This ring is my promise to accept your imperfections and appreciate all that makes you unique and beautiful.
May all your days be blessed with love and friendship. May each day and night of your lives be a new beginning.May your home be filled with laughter and the warm embrace of a summer’s day. May you find peacefulness and beauty, challenge, and satisfaction, humor and insight, healing and renewal, love and wisdom, as in a quiet heart.
May you always feel that what you have is enough.
I now pronounce you married!