For those who regard spirituality primarily as a journey toward wholeness, love is an essential training ground. Intimate relationships bring out the best and the worst in us. Partners are drawn together by desires, dreams, and shared pleasures; then, they improvise a relationship to navigate the sometimes treacherous waters of communication, career, finances, aging, and more. The daily working out of two-become-one is a deeply spiritual endeavor.

Daphne Rose Kingma is a psychotherapist whose practice over the past 25 years has helped hundreds of individuals and couples understand and build up their relationships. This poetically written manual explores the emotional and spiritual dimensions of love. "Your relationship is a precious jewel. Not everyone has been given such a gift. Treasure it, hold it in your hand and up to the light, and let its extraordinary beauty open your heart and transform your life."

In the first part of the book on the emotional path to love, Kingma offers advice on listening for the message under the words, walking a mile in your sweetheart's shoes, kindling the romance, tying up emotional loose ends, sharing your dreams, and holding each other in the light. We especially liked this comment: "Sanctifying your relationship means seeing it not as an act of self-indulgence, but as an offering of love that you deliver up with joy to the fulfillment of its higher meaning."

The second half of the book probes the spiritual aspects of a love relationship with ideas on creating depth, finding meaning, and enhancing intimacy. Kingma is cogent in her celebration of seeing your beloved as a spiritual being, practicing the art of empathy, and being available to the mystery. The Book of Love is a fine resource for couples who want to experience the full spiritual adventure of love.

Try a Spiritual Practice on Love