Random Thoughts

"Do we not all wish we could stand naked before each other...? Or is this our greatest fear... and if it is, why?"

Question: "I think you are right, we do. But why? Why do we have this urge to get close to and intimate with others. As much as it is uncomfortable and as much as we do fear it, we still want it. Why?"

Hmmm, I read this three times to understand the question :) that's always a good sign!

The "why" is "why do we want this naked intimacy" or closeness...

Very good question... not one I can necessarily answer in a paragraph or two, but maybe I can offer up a few leads?

Why 1. Because, for those who have experienced it, but haven't had any particularly strong spiritual experiences, it is the closest to not feeling terrifyingly alone in the world.

Why 2. For those who have never had it, it becomes a myth that they wish they could participate in - whether they are prepared for or capable of it is another matter entirely.

Why 3. Some people want to do it to "complete" themselves. Not a good thing, since you should be "complete" first...

Why 4. (perhaps my reason, or part of it) It is part of the ultimate goal to live life in a pure form - to always be the most "present" in any situation that is possible. To be honest, or as honest as possible, with oneself, is the "alone" version of this - and it carries its own risks and fears, especially for those not familiar with it. The "together" version, which can truly be worked on with every person you know or spend time with, is to try to pull down the barriers to expressing yourself, hoping that they will, too, so you can best experience the communication, the sharing - a view of the world through another's eyes?

Also, it can be intensely pleasurable - which goes right back to the question, why? That would tend to be evolutionary, I think, pleasures and pains tend to be survival traits, right? So the "built in" desire for this intimacy may be part of what helps us survive as under-armed, independent critters. In a sense, it is a "herd instinct," but a weak one - since we react so strongly to either the pressure of too much companionship (too many people or too much of the wrong ones), and also react so strongly when we have been emotionally injured by situations where we were close...

But *that* is another whole can of worms, for the capacity to be actually injured is much more intellectual, or at leat mental - you could love someone, but it does not "hurt" when they go away (you just miss them) unless you thought they somehow "never would"

And I think I am just scratching the surface of answering your question...

At another level, and as much as I love to chase questions like this down and try to understand their answers, there's always the old "why ask why" answer - not to suffocate the question, but to say, ok, I "like" this sort of intimacy, sometimes it causes me pain, I'll try to improve my odds by knowing myself even better (my odds of enjoying it more/hurting less). It's sorta like saying "why do I like peanut butter?" - only deeper, of course. it might be nice to know why, and I would never stop seeking the answers, or the path of answers, but in the meantime I would try not to run out of peanut butter :)

Out of wine, eh? Time to switch to sherry... or wodka!


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© Huw Powell

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