By redefining intimacy and understanding the multiple levels and forms that are feasible, I unlock a new scheme of possibilities. Focusing all of my needs for intimacy on one person creates a lot of pressure for that person and me; it takes my connection to God and my eternal search for happiness out of my hands and puts it in those of another. If our common original wound as humans is separation from Universal Connection, the illusion that giving and receiving love from one special person, my soul mate, will heal my feelings of loneliness and suffering is just that…a misconception. What if I gave myself permission to cultivate intimacy with every being I encounter? What if I dropped expectations and personality and became emotionally naked?
Searching for someone to fall in love with, that falls in love with me and that I can make happy and that will make me happy…the one person who will be there in sickness and in health forsaking all others… is extremely limiting; it is saying I can only reveal my true self – and even then usually a censored version – to one other being. It is designating ONE intermediary of connection to all that is. And it has an expectation behind it of what intimacy should look and feel like rather being open to all the flavors, textures, colors, sounds and forms that it may show up in. Limiting my intimacy to one person or one kind is like limiting myself to experience just one kind of food in this life – rather than tasting blueberries, almonds, cheese, potatoes, kale and garbanzos, I choose to eat only almonds. And as I would limit the amount of nutrition my body receives by consuming only one food, I am limiting my soul’s nourishment by allowing very few people access to my true self and am exposed myself to few others.
Cultivating more intimacy requires an audacious determination to know myself. Culture, religion, family have taught me to hide who I truly am, to create a very convincing persona that likely changes depending on who I am interacting with, out of shame and fear of rejection. But this is the same barrier preventing me from uncovering what I most long for…being seen and accepted in the totality of who I am. Recognize and appreciate who you are, your shadows and your light, your good moods as well as the bad ones, your deepest desires and deepest fears. This begins to open doors of approval to see the light and dark sides of others and let them into your secret garden. Keeping who I am bottled up, I am preventing others from seeing me and allowing judgements on all sides to proliferate, creating more disconnect and fewer opportunities to allow my radiance to illuminate the world.
What if we redefined intimacy as the dance between our manifest autonomy and our absolute connectedness?? Every single human on this planet is the infinite, whole, expansive Universe on one level of their being and a denser, unique person on another. So how do we reconcile these two seemingly mutually exclusive pieces of information? The same way we look at the dichotomies of hot and cold or man and woman or rich and poor…by recognizing the yin yang symbol that demonstrates that each is always in the other…in other words there are no absolutes. So I am both dense and expansive, both exceptional and identical, both free and connected. My issue around intimacy is that I was told that to feel connected I had to give up my freedom, to feel abundant unconditional love I had to reserve my heart and body for one special person (there is of course some play in this…but I refer to the overall paradigm of intimacy). I now recognize that prolonging this belief was preventing me from experiencing what I was seeking all along…a feeling of being at home.