Sacred shell of the spiritual dyad


Yesterday my friend and I had our every-other-week dyad time together. We’ve been meeting together almost two years now, since we met in a spiritual class in fall, 2018.

May I share the format that our teacher suggested–and that we’ve followed faithfully month after month?

We connect over Zoom at our favorite time of 9 a.m. on Tuesday and smile to see each other once again. (OK, often we laugh as we say hello.)

First, we sit in silence with our eyes closed for seven minutes. Then one of us shares or speaks from our Heart, our experience, our felt-sense of reality. We divulge what’s coming up in the moment. The other person doesn’t interrupt, doesn’t say anything. She/he looks in the eyes of the other and allows everything to arise and be met. It’s a sacred space where we’re allowed to be vulnerable, open, cry, laugh, sing, be silent.

We wear so many masks in our world as we connect with other human beings. The spiritual dyad resembles a sacred shell of Presence where we can truly be ourselves. We talk in ways that seem forbidden in everyday casual conversation.

The dyad is a safe container because we never, ever, mention what our partner shares. It’s so sacred. Trust builds up, encounter after encounter, as the truly vulnerable parts of ourselves learn that it’s safe to trust and relax, safe to share words and feelings we may have never spoken aloud to anyone before.

Sacred container.

After the first person shares for twenty minutes, we sit in silence for another seven minutes. Then the second person shares as the first person looks in her/his eyes providing space for the Heart.

I can’t even begin to describe how beautiful this is. How rare to meet another human being in this way.

We end with another seven minutes of silence before casually chatting about our everyday life for a few minutes and then saying goodbye, see you in two weeks.

I felt scared to ask my dyad partner if it was OK to share about our practice here on the blog…because it’s so darn sacred. The shell of another person’s trust at this level of communication is a precious thing. I would not want to do anything to disrespect this container.


(If we ever discover ourselves inadvertently screwing up by almost-mentioning a sacred share we say “Oops!” and apologize immediately. It’s rarely if ever happened over the past two years, but I can remember saying “Oops”…)

It truly is one of the most valuable sharings that I’ve experienced with another human being.

P.S. My dyad partner said yes, it’s OK to share on the blog, thank you for asking. And she is the one who called our committed sharing space a “shell”. I thought that was so beautiful. ❤

Day 4 of a seventy-five day journey to more deeply connect with God, Spirit, Holy, Love…to explore “What the Heart Knows” during the waning days of 2020.

About Kathy

I live in the middle of the woods in Michigan's Upper Peninsula. Next to Lake Superior's cold shores. I love to blog.
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35 Responses to Sacred shell of the spiritual dyad

  1. Larissa says:

    oh, what beautiful images! i especially love that first unfolded mollusc shell, like a pair of wings ❤ ❤ ❤

  2. This is amazingly beautiful on so many levels. I can’t even imagine the positive effects this is creating for both of you. How wonderful. I also love that it is being described as a container, which makes me think of my current writing teacher. She speaks of containers and our need for them to feel safe. She has described the embryo as the original container, which I think is so fitting here. You are both mothering each other in such a sacred and spiritual way. We can all hope to aspire to a relationship like this with another.

    • Kathy says:

      I am so glad you resonate so deeply with this container. It is so true that we can mother each other when we provide space and listen so deeply. Before this I had never thought of the containers we create with each other. Thinking now–a blog is a container, too. Thank you…

  3. Joanne says:

    What an unusual, or should I say unfamiliar, practice this is to me. How do you feel about the seven minutes of silence? I cannot imagine sitting face to face for that amount of time with another person and not saying anything. 🙂

    • rehill56 says:

      The first seven minutes they close their eyes. But you are right Joanne that would be hard.😊

    • Kathy says:

      Joanne, because our eyes are closed, it is not difficult to sit in silence for seven minutes. It can be harder (for me) to sit in silence sometimes during the twenty minutes of sharing when nothing comes up to share (which rarely happens, but sometimes it does.) It was a totally unfamiliar practice to me until two years ago. Am so grateful that it was introduced.

  4. I love this post so much. Thank you for sharing! I feel this is what we can call witnessing, and it so beautiful and rare. You are lucky to have this. Respect to both of you. May your connection grow stronger and this safe space become even more sacred.

    • Kathy says:

      You are so right–it is witnessing, and it is really rare in our world. I am glad you love the concept of the spiritual dyad, and maybe someday you will have an opportunity to explore it for yourself.

  5. leelah saachi says:

    I am smiling with all of me – I also have such a partner – for over 15 years now – meeting each fourteen days. The structure is bit different, but it is flexible – and we start with 20 minutes each, like you do too. WE often experience that our surroundings respond to what we are bringing forth: like when I shared a dream about a woman and a child, and my partner reported that that this pair just appeared outside her window and acted in a way that felt like a healing to my dream.

    • Kathy says:

      Oh my goodness, Leelah, how wonderful! Fifteen years now. That is really an inspiration. Did you discover this dyad format yourselves, or with a teacher/class that shared it? Love how you even shared your dreams together. Smiling back with all of me, too.

  6. What a beautiful space to share with another soul.

  7. What a beautiful practice! May we all find sacred spaces like this where we can be vulnerable and safe and connected at the same time. The shells are lovely. ❤️

  8. lisaspiral says:

    What an amazing practice! How fortunate you are to have a friend, and a space, like this.

  9. Ally Bean says:

    I’ve never heard of anything like this. It sounds like for you it’s become something wonderful. Fascinating the ways in which people connect, isn’t it?

  10. Susan D. Durham says:

    How absolutely beautiful and holy. Thank you so much for sharing about this sacred practice. I think you two are courageous and rare.

    • Kathy says:

      It really is amazing, Susan. Even though you and I don’t do dyads together, I feel just as safe with you, and am honored we can tell each other so much of deep importance to our spirits.

  11. jeffstroud says:

    Sounds amazing! We use to have those kind of practices or experiences over the phone once a month or so… with people from Barbara Marx Hubbard’s Gateway to Spiritual consciousness… Then when I went to live in community at Easton Mountain retreat center I often had the opportunity to have these types of sacred meetings on regular intervals.

    I am so thrilled that you have this time, that you have created sacred space with another spiritual being. Walking in the wood would be and is my sacred space most of the time and journalling every morning…
    Sending (((Hugs))) I love that you are continuing with this journey.

    • Kathy says:

      Jeff, I am glad you have experienced these kinds of “meetings of the Heart” too. I know you are committed to your journey, as well, and never quit looking toward spiritual consciousness and integrating it in your life. ❤

  12. Stacy says:

    Has this always been a Zoom practice or a Covid adjustment? This seems to be really cathartic, and touches a deep emotional, spiritual space, and I wonder if it is less formidable via computer. Do you ever want to have a different sort of relationship with your dyad partner, as in meet for coffee or take a hike? This is so foreign to me, I wonder if I would crave more than a bi-weekly computer chat. XOXO

    • Kathy says:

      Gosh, Stacy, I just responded to you and lost the comment, darn it. Yep, this has been a Zoom practice since we started two years ago. I think it would be lovely to have an in-person relationship with my partner (although we would have to be super careful not to mention shares) but she lives several states away so, sigh… We do sometimes connect by email though.

  13. Tilly says:

    That sounds like a beautifully cleansing experience Kathy

    Bright Blessings to you and your group

  14. Ohh, just lovely! This practice reminds me of a Circle of Trust in the Quaker tradition. I had the opportunity to learn and practice this type of communication on a retreat through the Center for Courage and Renewal. Deep listening is truly a gift.

  15. Robin says:

    Two years is a goodly amount of time. I would imagine such time spent together is deep and yes, sacred. I miss the dyad practice (from the yoga class). We stopped when the course ended which, honestly, is about the time that trust really begins to develop. A shell as container is a beautiful image (so are your words and images).

    • Kathy says:

      Robin, I remember that you had a dyad time together as well. It really is a beautiful practice, but it does take time for trust to develop. Love that concept of the shell. Thank you.

  16. Pingback: I’m vulnerable, you’re vulnerable, we’re all vulnerable–and it’s OK | Lake Superior Spirit

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