On this page, I will repost insightful comments from readers, as they are contributed.
Rohan had this to say about the importance of conscious intent in building, creating, and negotiating honest and mutually-beneficial relationships:
The issue is not how many people you have sex with, or whether it is consecutive or concurrent, but rather the quality of the relationships. It’s about living and relating consciously with others who want to do the same.
Emily, “a happy reader and commenter” had this to say about how polyamory can be viewed in terms of spirituality, as well as how music can be an analog to living poly:
People are polyamorous in as many varied ways as people are spiritual. Few people are spiritual or poly in exactly the same way another person is, but there are common themes. People who have similar spiritual ideals come together and put together a creed that is common to them all. The same goes for polyamorous people. I would argue that, composing a creed of sorts in regard to polyamory is like composing a piece of music.
A piece of music is created over a period of time, whether short or long, and how long it takes to compose a piece is often indicative of its nature and intent. Something improvised on the spot for a single performance might never be played again, but there’s a certain beauty in its short-lived nature. Meanwhile, there’s a different appreciation for something that comes together slowly, over many years and lots of mistakes and rewriting the piece as it evolves with the composer’s life. That’s like how people come together and create a creed. It may be short or long lived, but each has its own sort of appeal to different people.
In addition, music can be played by people other than the composer. Depending on the piece, its often required. I took seven years of concert piano lessons when I was younger, and there was something fascinating to me about the idea that, in the entire history of the composition I was playing at any point in time, nobody has or ever will play the piece exactly the same as I would. Similarly, I’ve done a lot of reading on polyamory and various polyamorous lifestyles and creeds. I’ve “played” some of the ideas, but, in living my own life, I’m living it slightly differently than anyone else has lived it, composer included. Those small differences are indicative of unique individuals and, to me, echo the way that music is interpreted and played differently by different performers. This is not bad, but a part of how the music or creed evolves as it passes through different hands. There will be overarching themes through both that connect music of similar styles and intents and polyamory as a whole.
As one last example, my high school band was playing an adaptation of Dies Irae for one concert. As an extra treat, about a week or two before the concert, our director managed to bring in the composer of our piece for a rehearsal to listen and give feedback. For the first two play-throughs, he simply listened. After that, he stood up and gave his feedback. He’d never heard his piece played like we were playing it before. We’d changed things, as a band, in ways that were now how he’d intended his piece. However, instead of trying to drag us back to how he originally composed them, he said that our “version” was good. It had grown out of his original, and was almost the same, if only because we were playing the same music, but those differences in playing style had made the piece our own. In the same way, we take in ideas and influences from other creeds and “play” them, but there will be small differences that tie it to the individual “performer.”