I was driving home after a long and generally dissapointing day fishing on the river (only one small Chinook to show for my efforts) and I could find nothing on my preset radio stations worthy of my listening enjoyment. The "seek" button began to be utilized and I found myself briefly (albeit not briefly enough) tuned to the local trash talk radio station in which the topic d'jour for this group of male hosts was: "Would you have sex with a retarded woman?" Of course, my curiosty got the best of me and I listened for a bit longer - just long enough in fact to hear one of the hosts qualify his resounding "YES" with "as long as she was hot, and it was just about sex - no emotional of psychological attachment."
I turned the radio off and began to think, and lament about how we as human beings have so isolated ourselves from one another! To think that one could engage in what is obviously one of the most physically intimate acts and yet NOT have any sort of emotional or psychological connection is truly amazing! In fact, while I do not believe it is even possible, it seems that many many (perhaps the majority?) of people today believe it is so. And the fact that they can not only claim it to be so, but also ACT upon that belief is rather disheartening - really if you think hard about it, it is not all that far from the same mental state of being that would allow you to slowly cut a man's head off and then sleep soundly that night.
I noticed a strange thing once while cuddled up with my wife watching TV one night. We were both wearing shorts and our legs were intertwined throughout the length of the film and as the film ended we had to virtually peel our skin apart as they had seemed almost to have "melded" together. And while I am sure this is a fairly common occurance (perhaps even a somewhat "icky" one), it made me think that that sort of closeness over a long period of time had caused our skin to interact in such a way that it was infact confusing itself with the other. I wondered, half-seriously, if we had remained that way for much longer whether or not we might not have been able to part? Like a tongue on an icy lightpost.
Anyway, regardless of what the trash-talk hosts believe, we cannot escape the reality of our connectedness and I believe that when we deny it we create the potential for a most deadly unseen polution. Any form of intimacy causes us to affect one another - for good or bad. Spend any significant amount of time with another person and you will begin to see that your mutual connectedness has caused change in one another. You begin to see them in you and vice versa. The parent child relationship is a perfect example, but it is also an extreme example because of the nature of the connection.
Children are profoundly prone to being affected by their parents. I see so much of myself in the bahavior of my children that at times I am quite scared. While some of it is genetic, much more of it (I believe) is from their close proximity to me. Now, I must admit, there are probably some good things my children have adopted from me, but I tend to only see that bad because the bad is typically much more vocal in its manifestation. All this to say, children are uniquely subject to our connectedness and when one thinks of all the much worse things that go on in this world - often right in the presence of children - it is a very sad thought.
In my mind the issue also extends beyond the effects of intimacy, for you see I also believe that it is possible for us to affect one another without neccesarily being profoundly intimate. But, the extent to which we are intimate must, it seems to me multiply the effect.
So, what lessons am I learning? No man is an island and thus privacy and "personal rights" are highly suspect in my mind, which is not to say that I am going to politicize this notion. But MOST importantly, I had better get my fecies together so that those with whom I am most intimate can glean more good from me than bad - in my mind this brings a whole new color to the picture of "judgement."
...offered by Dn. James Ferrenberg, a sinner at 7:22 AM [+]