The Mystical Marriage
Ten Laws Of Love for the New Couple
An interview with Seana McGee, M.A. and Maurice Taylor, M.A.
By Dr. Maryel McKinley, PhD, C.A.D.C.
I met Seana McGee and Maurice Taylor in the pressroom at the LA Whole Life Expo when I was filming for Wisdom TV. They were so magnetic and charismatic, that I thought I would love to interview them for my TV show Choices. We stayed in contact and as it turns out we were both recruited by Deepak Chopra for Mallika Chopra’s brainchild and multi-media organization, My Potential. They are the official relationships experts, and as many of you already know I am on the faculty as the addictions expert.
So our paths crossed twice within a short period of time. I knew they would be perfect for the relationships issue of Awareness Magazine; I could just picture their gorgeous glowing faces gracing the cover like a beacon calling to all of us who are hungry for what they have: a relationship that works!
They have actually discovered a whole new paradigm based on insights from their own personal marriage and as therapists. This new way of relating has been dubbed by Seana and Maurice as “The New Couple.”
“The New Couple” is not only a book, but also a way of life that teaches us how to relate in a more profound and effective way, not only in our love relationships, but in all our relations with others. “The New Couple” is based on The 10 New Laws of Love, which have been carefully and brilliantly communicated in their books, audiotapes and powerful workshops.
Seana McGee and Maurice Taylor are known as two of the most successful therapists for couples around the world. They have had private practices in Asia and the U.S., and have treated thousands of couples from more than 50 different countries and cultures. Their private practice in Singapore was endorsed by governmental officials, where they were known as the most effective and successful therapists in that part of the world. Couples literally flew in to seek treatment all the way from Pakistan, Australia, Hong Kong, etc! They were even featured on Asian MTV!! Now that is breaking the cultural barriers!
To me, this shows that what they teach really works. If it can cross cultural and language barriers worldwide, it must be something that is here to stay, and that the world has been waiting for far too long!
I hope the readers of Awareness Magazine enjoy the following interview as much as I did. I wish I could transcribe the entire 2-hour interview, but space will not allow, so I will do my best in providing the readers with the most representative parts of the interview.
Dr. Maryel: Hi Maurice and Seana, how is my favorite couple?
Maurice/Seana: We are doing great! In fact we are preparing for our workshop in England later this month. We just found out that our book has been translated and is selling well in Brazil, and that an agent in Israel is wanting us to translate it into Hebrew so we can do seminars there.
Dr. Maryel: Wow, you really are an international New Couple!
Maurice/Seana: Yes! We are also involved with the Hoffman Institute, which has Joan Borysenko and Sirah Vitesse on the board! They have organizations all over the world where they book our workshops.
Dr. Maryel: I was just listening to your tape on “The New Couple” where you talk about the old paradigm of relating like being in a trance.
Seana: Yes, the trance of tradition.
Maryel: You also say how if we have a peaceful loving couple, we will have a more peaceful loving world; it looks like you are literally helping people on a global scale!
Seana: Well, we’ve always seen the world as being one big family. My initial work was with the United Nations, thinking I would be able to contribute in a big way to bringing peace in the world. I ended up walking away from that job because of the infighting and lack of ability to resolve interpersonal conflicts. That’s when I switched paths and went to graduate school to study Psychology. I met Maurice in my Family Therapy Class!
Maryel: How incredibly romantic! They should make a movie of your life story! Maurice, how did you get interested in Psychology? Maurice: Well, actually I was being groomed to be a congressman! I was a little naive, even though it was 1978 and the country was still reeling from Watergate, I had the notion that institutional change could produce a global result of peace, better living circumstances for all people. I left Washington D.C. very disheartened. What I learned there was the main way people related to each other was through hostility, intimidation and psychological war!
Maryel: It’s amazing that neither of you became jaded, that you moved forward and found your true calling and an avenue that would provide the opportunity for you both to help heal the world on your own terms! Seana, when I listened to your audiotape series, I was particularly impressed about your reaction as a child when you tried to help your parents have more intimacy.
Seana: I was so saddened by my parent’s unhappy marriage that I did a poster campaign to try and bring them closer. So I did a picture of them kissing under the mistletoe, a picture of them in bed together, and a picture of them getting married. But it didn’t work; my mother got very upset and tore them off the wall. She interpreted it exactly opposite. She was her own inner critic that was telling her she was not good enough as a mother and wife.
Maryel: That must have been very traumatic!
Seana: It was Maryel, but I have to tell you that I never gave up!
Maryel: I’m sure all the couples in the world who have been helped by you are happy about that!
Seana: As an Addictions Specialist, Maryel, you should know that I did the same thing with my alcoholic father. I removed all of his scotch bottles when I realized one day that he was poisoning himself and killing his family. So I relabeled his Johnny Walker scotch bottle and put new labels on them as toxic, that he was killing himself and his family. When he came home from work I excitedly said “Daddy, look what I discovered, this stuff is bad for you!” He went sheet white and never mentioned it again, just kept on drinking.
Maryel: Talk about denial! What about you Maurice, when you were 12 you tried to help your mom’s marriage?
Maurice: Yes, I knew my poor mother was so emotionally neglected; her mother died very young as an intergenerational victim of genocide (Armenian) my father did not know how to listen to her. Ironically they were both Psychologists, but they still didn’t have a lot of relationship education, so my mom’s emotional needs were never addressed. Even though she was smart as a whip, she played the doormat. I learned very early on about the unbalanced nature of relationships.
Maryel: I concur with what you said earlier about codependency being at the root of all our problems and all our addictions. That is why I am so excited about the work you are doing. I believe there is more dysfunction in this world than not, and the work you are doing is addressing this issue at the core level in the family system.
Seana: That’s right, we are talking about a co-creative relationship. We have to find out what is wrong before we can go about healing it. Culturally, it looks like denial is at the bottom of this. The first thing is to respond to this massive epidemic of denial and we have to maximize in the face of minimization.
Maryel: Well look at the divorce rate, I love how you called your work divorce prevention in the book!
Seana: Well, with information and tools we can keep our marriages alive. It is not necessary to divorce; we are responding to so much useless tragedy. We can keep our love and chemistry alive. People think that is romantic fantasy when it is in fact romantic reality; that’s the good news! What we are saying is that the old model of marriage, the old tradition has us hypnotized to believe that healthy long-term relationships should be instinctual.
Maryel: And what Maurice had said, that his mother dealt with her relationship like forbearance, the mother with a grin and the father with a grimace. I recognize that in my own parents! It seems that we grow up thinking that we are supposed to grin and bear it.
Maurice: That’s why so many of our parents never divorced — they thought they had to live that way.
Maryel: Now it seems that in our generation everyone divorces without giving it a chance!
Seana: It’s because people have no education or tools to help them stay together. “The New Couple” model teaches a new paradigm; there are three basic skills. Deep listening, emotional literacy and conflict resolution. New Couples know two facts about the psychology of relationships. The first is that relationships go through developmental stages, just like children. We all expect our kids, when they hit 2 or 3, to use a new two-letter word, NO, this is healthy. When a kid turns 13 we expect hormonal behavior.
Maryel: What are these developmental stages. Maurice: The first is the intoxication stage between two weeks and two years. I think ours lasted two minutes. Seana: As therapists we have this perverse pleasure in working though our shadow sides! Maurice: The other piece of intoxication plays on our desire for wholeness, for oneness, for union with the divine. For many people this stage is the most profound experience we ever have of unconditional love.
Seana: Love is a drug, that first stage of relationship is so addictive. It is our mother, another God; it is how we defer from ourselves to get away from our own pain, so people become monogamous. Maurice and I were that prior to our relationship.
Maryel: It sounds like being addicted to falling in love, when this doesn’t work out, you run to the next person. That seems to be what a lot of people are doing nowadays. Maurice: They hit the power struggle and then they bail! That’s because we are taught by society that intoxication characterizes true long-term romance, and that is not true. What characterizes true long lasting love is chemistry.
Seana: The second phase is like the hangover, the power struggle! We start getting used to each other, then this colossal psychological event takes place. The fact that this is not taught in public education is sheer madness, I think it borders on criminality. This is the second fact we need to be aware of, it is called transference. In other words we unconsciously regress and start expecting our partner to compensate for whatever shortcomings occurred in our parenting, and yearn for our partner to be a parent to us.
Maryel: That’s where people realize, “Oh my God , I’ve married my mother!” — or — ”I’ve married my father!”
Maurice: Exactly, and then they state irreconcilable differences and get divorced, without trying to work through this stage.
Maryel: Couples may well have an extraordinary relationship if they work this through!
Seana: So long as they have the first qualification mentioned in our book, which is chemistry. The second is that we have to be best friends. There cannot be a successful relationship without both. Maurice: Many parents who do not have the tools to get through the second stage will innocently turn to their kids to get emotional needs met.
Maryel: The roles are just being blended, total enmeshment!
Seana: Exactly and they didn’t know because nobody taught them! In fact there are a lot of women who intentionally and unconsciously had kids expecting to get their emotional needs met because they have been programmed to believe that men can not possibly provide it!
Maryel: Look at all the young teenage pregnancies in areas where there are not a lot of male role models around. I can see that this need for love is epidemic, and they pass this pattern onto their kids.
Seana: You are exactly right, I have worked with those kids.
Maurice: Now we get to stage three. Whereas the first is the intoxications stage; the second is the power struggle where we need information and tools in order to resolve it; the 3rd stage, is co-creativity.
Seana: We believe that co-creative relationships are our birthright. The 21st century is the era where couples will experience co-creative relationship, and this is dependent on their simply embracing a learning curve when it comes to love!
Maryel: How beautifully put! Maurice: In the co-creative relationship we know each other’s psycho-biographys. We have to know where we came from and what our early relationships looked like.
Seana: Exactly, I have to know about Maurice’s early life and he has to know about me, so we will know where we can get in trouble with each other. When we know our stories, we are in the process of mastering skills which are: 1. Emotional literacy, 2. Conflict resolution, and 3. Deep Listening.
Maurice: you don’t have to be perfect in these areas, but just allow yourselves to be in the process of it. It’s not about perfection. It’s not that New Couples don’t in get in trouble with each other.
Seana: Maurice and I are both very fiery personalities, we still get in trouble with each other! But the point is we have a methodology for getting back to love and trust! And, for goodness sake we use it! We use our conflict resolution skills, we deeply listen to each other all the time, so that is co-creativity.
Maurice: We notice that we can put our sights on our mission in life when we reach the co-creative stage.
Seana: Yes, we are still each other’s best friends, we still have great sex, and are still each other’s emotional intimates and confidantes. That is co-creativity.
Maryel: How should our readers learn about their biographies? How can they become “New Couples”?
Seana: First of all, when we say New Couple, we don’t mean that they have recently gotten together. The New Couple is any couple who embraces the 10 New Laws of Love.
Maryel: In your book you do give ample information on how to embrace the New Couple laws of love, as well as a sense of what a psycho-biography is. As a therapist myself, I know people need an experiential taste to break that down. Maurice: Absolutely. We agree with you on that. That is why we offer workshops all over the world for couples. We also recommend that couples seek individual therapy. We actually help couples learn how to choose their therapist, as often therapists will not go into the past.
Seana: We believe that if we are limited today, we are living our past anyway! It needs to be resolved! Maurice: We really work on identifying and protecting the child part of us, keeping the inner critic off our backs and neutralizing that voice. We all know it is that interplay between a vicious critic and an undefended child that drives addictions.
Maurice: That’s why it’s hard to get out of that cycle.
Seana: We teach how to raise the volume of the voice of their adult self, or the higher self. We also use Gestalt methods and emotional catharses, essential to healing.
Maryel: Can you expand on that for our readers?
Seana: Sure, for example we believe that crying is the “healing feeling”, and tears are Great Spirit’s way of cleansing our psycho-spiritual pipes when we get clogged. We believe in grieving and helping our clients work out rage. We believe this emotional transformation is essential to healing.
Maryel: You were speaking earlier about emotional literacy. Isn’t it funny how even today we so often hear “Body, Mind, Spirit” but we don’t hear the word emotions anywhere! The balance of our wellness relies upon the elements of nature. The fire is the spirit, the earth is the physical body, the air is the intellect or the mind, and the water is the emotions, or feeling! Without all of these elements we could not exist!
Seana: That’s right, and our emotions are body based, so that is why our 3rd law of love is emotional literacy! If you are emotionally illiterate, how can you manage your emotions responsibly?
Maryel: Is there anything the readers can do to help get this education out there?
Seana: There are many organizations that want to turn “The New Couple” book into a textbook for public education, and our book is being used in some universities in couple’s counseling programs. The Ten New Laws of Love have actually been translated into a pamphlet in four different languages in Singapore and is required reading for anyone getting married. The pamphlets are made available at the Registry of Marriage, so the Government actually embraces the Ten New Laws of Love in their social engineering!
Maryel: Great News! The USA should follow that example!
Maryel: As the co-creators of “The New Couple”, what is your actual definition of the “New Couple?”
Maurice: New Couples know the facts about the psychology of relationships, they know relationship skills, and they are willing to do whatever transformational or educational work necessary to keep their chemistry alive. That is our definition of “The New Couple.”
Maryel: Well, our time is coming to an end. To sum up what I’ve learned from you in metaphysical terms, it sounds like you are addressing the lower 3 chakras, doing the ego work first, and then moving up through our higher chakras so we can keep our hearts open and learn to not only work things through, but go even further and co-create a life of our own personal dreams, which in turn will affect our children, our communities and the world.
Maurice: Exactly. What we have found is that through moving forward with the Ten New Laws of Love, people are not only having a better relationship, but they are learning to manifest abundance and prosperity in their lives! We say that healthy and successful relationships are the last frontier of the Human Potential Movement. And that is because of the phenomena that people can create abundance in their lives and manifest their dreams. We can meditate, and some here in Marin County can even levitate! Ha ha!
Maryel: Oh, you are so funny! As a trained therapist myself I can see how your work can be easily translated to fit into any tradition, regardless of religion, race, or cultural environment. This is why you are doing so well all around the world.
Maurice: We don’t care if you are Muslim, Jewish, or fundamentalist. That’s how the evolution happens, true transformation!
Maryel: Well you two are just wonderful, I just love you both!
Seana: Well, we three have chemistry, there is no question about that!
Maryel: I’m surprised the tape recorder hasn’t blown up yet the way it did when I interviewed Arielle Ford! Ha Ha! Thank you both so much for the great interview and for the work you are doing, keep it up!
For a list of workshops and New Couple Books and audios, please go to their exciting new website at www.newcouple.com
Dr. Maryel McKinley is an addictions specialist, syndicated columnist and TV/Radio personality. You may contact her at (714) 396-4314 or Maryel@DrMaryelMcKinley.com
Chemistry: The First New Law of Love — Chemistry is the magic; the special energies that signal partners possess the raw material for success. Chemistry is not optional because it provides the synergy couples need to get through the rapids of relationship and keep them high on course to their grandest goals.
Priority: The Second New Law of Love — Priority is a couple’s commitment to keep the health of their relationship front and central. It asks partners to begin to psychologically “leave the nest” of their first families — and to address any compulsions and addictions including codependence — in order to be fully available to their second family.
Emotional Integrity: The Third New Law of Love — Emotional Integrity asks partners to create an emotional safe zone with each other. They do this by taking responsibility for their feelings, especially by learning the difference between acting them out and expressing them healthily. This law also guides partners in identifying and healing blind spots and buttons that cause disharmony in all relationships.
Deep Listening: The Fourth New Law of Love — Deep Listening is the greatest act of love. And a skill. It is the partner’s ability to hear each other’s words and the feeling underneath, with compassion and empathy.
Equality: The Fifth New Law of Love — Equality is about fairness and respect. It involves acknowledging power imbalances in the relationship and helps partners see through the tyranny of unnegotiated and often antiquated roles, responsibilities and unconscious expectations.
Peacemaking: The Sixth New Law Of Love — Peacemaking is a couple’s commitment to maintain their emotional safe zone through the use of anger management and conflict resolution tools and New Couple agreements.
Self Love: The Seventh New Law of Love — Relationship landmines are precise gauges of pockets of low self-love and unfinished emotional business from childhood. This law teaches partners how to do the crucial deep diving and fall back in love with everyone.
Mission In Life: The Eighth New Law Of Love — This law teaches that true love cannot be sustained until both parties are on some level engaged in his or her own true work. Mission in life is partner’s commitment to the fulfillment of their own and the other’s life purpose. Intimates are either a mission’s most powerful support or its most formidable saboteur.
Walking: The Ninth New Law of Love — Walking involves addressing the primary insecurities that plague all partners, because emotional and financial dependencies can mean slow death of respect, trust and passion. When the intimates are willing and able to leave the relationship if need be, it’s their best insurance that they won’t!
Transformational Education: The Tenth New Law Of Love — Transformational Education is the fail-safe mechanism of the Ten New Laws of Love. It represents a partner’s commitment to do whatever learning and healing is necessary if they get stuck on any of the first nine laws because a “New Couple” agrees: If it’s a problem for one of us, it’s a problem for both of us!
For more information on “The New Couple” book and “The Ten New Laws Of Love” workshops and tapes, or the new Tele-Classes, go to www.newcouple.com or call (888) 639-8612.
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