Unreasonable

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I want to find that one person who understands me at each and any moment in my life. Never mind that I sometimes need years to understand myself. Never mind that I have so many people who understand a part of me, because, after all, we are not living each moment to its fullest and when we need to talk we usually limit ourselves to one part of who we are. Nevertheless, yes, unreasonable of me, I want to find that person.

I want to listen to your words and know who you are. Never mind that I see your actions and they speak true. Never mind that I have enough understanding to know that your words can be a lot harsher than your thoughts ever are and as far away from your actions as it’s humanly possible. I know, unreasonable of me!

I want to see your beauty in all its difficult glory. Never mind that you think yourself ugly, silly, dumb and difficult. Never mind that you travel to exquisite places and the beauty doesn’t lift you because you feel it is so far beyond your reach. I will get impatient and tell you off for hiding under conventional standards because yes, unreasonable of me, I want to see your beauty!

I want to feel everything. Never mind that I am out of practice, never mind that there are some things I cannot feel for various reasons. I am made to feel, I am made to experience the retreat of reality under the weight of feelings. Never mind that in the routine of life feeling like this is dangerous for peace of mind and for peace in general! Despite all this, unreasonable of me, I want to feel everything!

I want to reach out and take what I need without apologizing, without even asking for permission. Never mind that life isn’t like that. Never mind that, even if life was like that, the world we live in isn’t like that. Never mind that, even if the world we live in was like that, asking for permission is always a good idea! No, I don’t want to come back to reality! Unreasonable of me, I want to take!

I want to share with you. Never mind that there are no words for the first buds on the tree opening up. Never mind that there are no breaths deep enough for the sky disappearing into shades of clouds above the mountains. Never mind that there is no heart rhythm enough for that book, that movie, that concert. All this notwithstanding, unreasonable of me, I want to share with you.

It should come as no surprise that the only constants are you and me…. and my unreasonable entitlement!

Worlds

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You’d think one world is enough, and ours is complex enough as it is. And maybe there is this one world only (you know, inhabited etc.), although it doesn’t make sense. But within this world of ours I think of many worlds to which we belong, to which we give different names and that intersect in ways that make us aware of each other. To give one example, I met my husband because the world of religious observance (going to church) of one friend intersected with the immigrant world (getting those of one language to come together and eat, drink and be merry) of another friend. My husband’s landlady belonged to the first world (she went to the same church as my first friend), I came to eat, drink and be merry with my second friend. These friends knew each other and decided that my husband and I really should get together. So those worlds intersected. The consequence is my present 🙂

The food we eat (vegetarians, Paleo, allergies, intolerances, ethics, food miles, religion), what we do (art, crafts, gardening, library, trekking, history, travel, pubs, museums), the work we do (government, NGO, community, science, corporation, academia), the way we think and what we believe in (politics, religion, activism, culture) create worlds and we move from one world to the other, changing subtly on the threshold of each, meeting different people, behaving in specific ways that are recognizable to our group and belonging to each one of those worlds with different parts of ourselves.

We tend to judge people not only by the number of worlds they belong to, but also in regards to the actual belonging. The number of worlds is an indicator of wellbeing, for example. A workaholic would belong to maybe two worlds (the work and the home) while participation in society (how many worlds you belong to) is a common question in health and social services.

Actual belonging is harder to define but makes up the bulk of first dates, getting to know each other sessions and team building exercises. People seem to define themselves by the worlds they belong to eg I am a Christian/engineer/Liberal/cornet player/vegan/refugee/Cuban etc. etc. and that narrowing down is what starts the conversation, the selection and determines much of the communication afterwards.

Belonging to these worlds comes usually with the sense of security people crave. We therefore gift those worlds loyalty and personalize them, sometimes to extremes. They become “the way” and we resist changes. Sometimes it even becomes difficult to move between those worlds and we are shocked when we come in contact with unknown worlds (changing jobs, travelling to other countries, joining a club). We are at our most alert (for good or bad 😛 ) when we are in between worlds.

These worlds are human creations, of course. We live in complex societies and there are too many of us for one world only to be feasible. But we are, as a species, adaptable, with a reasonable tolerance for stress and with a brain that thrives on challenges, so we move between those creations of ours with ease, grace even.

Now, what about our big world? What about planet Earth?