It’s a funny way to start this, isn’t it? But without my fears, I wouldn’t have come looking for… for what? Isn’t that the hardest thing of all to find? The thing that you don’t know you’re looking for?
Sometimes you even pretend like you’re not looking for anything, or that you’ve already found it.
Because it would be silly to look for something if you don’t know what it is that you’re looking for. Right?
But at the same time, somehow you know you’ll recognize it when you see it.That’s what I’m looking for.
And what’s funniest of all is that what I was looking for is what I most desire. True intimacy. Wow. Isn’t that what we all really want?
But real intimacy is terrifying. It’s so scary that we often only practice it when it’s forced on us. It’s to the point where we numb ourselves to only feel something if it’s painful. Why is that?
Well, there seems to be some very good “reasons” (and some bad ones) as to why we’ve been brought up in a world where we both fear and crave intimacy. Basically what it comes down to is this: people just aren’t ready for it. It requires a great deal of, how do I put this, strength of character. Yes! That’s a good one.
Because without a strong character, real intimacy would sweep a person away. It would be too much.
Intimacy asks us to open up to communication in a very broad sense. It asks us to see another as they truly are. This can be another person, the world in or around you, or anything really. And it also asks us to do the same for ourselves.
Intimacy isn’t specifically a “you and me” type of thing.
It’s not about duality or non-duality.
It’s about opening up to hearing what is truly being said. That’s a big one. Really big. Hear what’s being said. There’s probably a difference between what you think is being said, and what’s really being said. This is normal.
When I say this, I don’t mean with words, or without words. It is with all senses and sensations. It is with everything that you are.
Intimacy asks us to become more sensitive, not less.
It asks us to really find out what’s important to us.
The simple act of listening to ourselves. To Others. To the world inside and around us. The practice of receiving any information and reading it carefully like the whispers of your truest lover.
I’ve long held this mindset of “doing.” That I must “do” something when I hear of a problem. Like I’ve been trained to do this without realizing it.
And as often happens when there is the realization of “deep” pain, I feel anger. And in the practice of intimacy, I hear it. I receive the anger as it comes. But it is not me. And it has passed.
This is a practical example of what I see. That it is not the “doing,” but the listening.
This is the way to both my greatest desires, and my greatest fears. I fear what I will hear. What will everyone say if I really listen?
And as I consider this, I hear birds chirping.
And I feel tears.
Love elephant and want to go steady?
Apprentice Editor: Kathryn Muyskens / Editor: Renée Picard
Photos: Wikimedia Commons