If you project a movie onto the wall you see the picture but it is not very clear. If you project a movie on a screen it is vivid and clear.
When you are attracted to someone it is because they are like the screen. What you see if vivid and clear.
It is obvious that chemistry is not working as a criteria for selecting a mate. We have over compensated for the days in which a marriage was arranged.
Compatibility is a better reason to choose a partner. However, in working with people for 30 years I have never been able to get them to give up attraction or what we call chemistry.
So the question is how do you find a compatible person and also feel chemistry with them. Well, you project sexual attraction on to them. It is tricky but it can be done. As they say, "beauty is in the eye of the beholder."
Harville Hendrix, in his book Getting the Love You Want, was the first to suggest that attraction was based on projection and not a clear picture of whom you are attracted to.
So what is the answer? I believe that our first priority is to find someone we get along with. Then before we commit we work to project something positive on to the person they are with. Everyone will do this in his or her own way.
Hendrix, of course, tries to control projection after marriage and does a great job trying to fix the relationship by stimulating certain projections and creating compatibility. But that is a lot of hard work and the horse is already out of the barn. But what is to stop us from projecting positive things on to the person we are already compatible with and with whom we get along. Then you have the compatibility, romance and sexual attraction all in one person.
Of course, to many this will take all the "romance" out of it. But it is very practibility.
Of course there are some people whom you will be able to turn into a screen and not a wall but you would be surprised how many will.
Put another way, projecting romantic attraction on to a compatible perosn is like letting love grow on you. I learned this from Sandra. I am not gay so I have always projected on to men. Then I met Sandra while volunteering at a nursing home. There was no initial attraction. But we got along so well I really appreciated her. Then one day I felt the sign of romantic feelings. I missed her. I worried when she was late coming into the visiting center. My heart beat faster. In our case we did not back down. To the horror of my family, we took this out of bounds and married in a beautiful ceremony. Neither one of us had ever had a wedding so it was fun. My relationship with Sandra was beautiful and lasted four years before she committed suicide. Before I met her she had fallen off a building and broken her back. She had also lost her leg and the pain was beyond belief. So I know love can grow from compatibility.
One of my obsessions over the year was David who I loved in high school. I continued to feed the projections over the years. I call this carrying a torch. To a certain extent I can still conjur up feelings of love for him even though I know it is just a projection. At the twenty year high school reunion I saw him and I thought I was still in love. In reality I was still projecting. Three months later the projection wore off and I saw him clearly. He was no longer the David I had loved in high school. He was no longer the tall, lean basketball player I had adored. As it turned out we were not compatible because he was a practicing alcoholic and I was sober in AA. So I had the courage to walk away. At the time I could not believe I was walking away from "David," but I did.