I traveled to Portland this past week. It was faboo. Have you been? So much natural beauty in Oregon! We drove out to the coast and stopped in the mountains along the way. Wow. There's a kind of rock in the mountain stream, it looks like clay caked into a solid mass. When the rock hits another rock, it splays into several parts like a puzzle piece. Great fun to throw rocks and put hands in water to feel the chilly stream. I felt so much peace and love as I gazed at the pine trees that towered above us.
My nephew lives in that area. He's a teeny thing right now, barely four years old. I don't know him well since we haven't spent much time around each other. So I felt surprised by the love that I felt for him as we sat at dinner. He asked me to draw with him, and I happily obliged with a teddy bear on his paper. Warm love gushed from my chest toward him as he laughed because the bear was upside down. What a cutie pie.
My sister and her husband are going through some challenges right now. I won't go into great detail since it's their conundrum to deduce. It was kind of difficult to sit with them and hear the same lines of logic that I heard as I grew to this point. My sister brought up my mom and said, "So you're not speaking with her right now?" It's true, I'm not speaking with her because she's unable to respect me. Only, I didn't form those words because... well... I was so tired when I saw them, and it was awkward because we hadn't hung out in a couple of years. So my words coalesced in a different manner. I managed to eek out that I'd tried a solo lunch and then brought my partner to another gathering. I explained that my mom was all, "Ohh, my son!" to my partner even though that was the first time she'd met him. I was trying to explain how hurtful it was that she wouldn't treat me as an individual. But the message didn't seem to make it into comprehension. My sister and her husband advised me to, "smile and nod," and then they both went into stories about how much they smiled and nodded through countless situations before they moved to another state.
What is that pull to associate with good? Some of us feel it, others don't. It shifts in its strength, this pull for good. Sometimes it's clear and in other moments vague. We get beaten down or otherwise feel the drag of life, and maybe we forgo any association with the pull for good. It's not there anyway! Why do I try so hard! Everything sucks! Totally understandable perspectives. In this life, there are a lot of reasons to act good or bad, moral or unjust, kind or cruel. All of us have our stories, our identities. Our parents weren't able to give us what we needed or they gave too much in some areas and not enough in others. We created dreams for ourselves and didn't follow them sometimes or maybe we followed all of them and feel tired. Our siblings or friends or local society treated us with disrespect and dishonor. It's real, the struggle is totally real and on so many levels. A pull to associate with good may persist against all odds.
I recently discovered that many gifted and sensitive people are drawn to cults, that some believe this is due to the former's innate sense of idealism. A clinician named Dabrowski wrote about the gifted and sensitive population. He believed that certain neuroses are necessary for full character development. Rather than characterize depressive states as pathological, Dabrowski wrote of why they can be essential. Several clinicians and educators offer support and discernment in Living with Intensity: Understanding the Sensitivity, Excitability, and Emotional Development of Gifted Children, Adolescents, and Adults. Instead of looking at the powerhouse one-minded personality as singularly desireable, Dabrowski's theory of positive disintegration, and his associated views, offers that abstract and meek are equally necessary and helpful for the planet.
Lost humans, unite.
Bare arms, fair charms, clear sight.
Connected yet separate. Alive with death.
Change is subtle when it crashes with waterfalls.
Well hello there.