I was talking with my boyfriend the other day about the importance of the words we use and how all those subtle nuances between closely related words can influence the flow of communication and the depth of connection we can achieve with another person, dependent on the similarity of our experience of a certain term and the meaning we give to it.
Verbal communication is never complete as each one of us gives different meaning to a word based on our upbringing, surroundings, education, personality traits, experiences and so on... We may think we are transmitting our idea clearly, but as it passes the ears of the other person it changes colours and adapts itself through the receiver’s filter, therefore our ideas can never be transmitted “clearly”, unchanged and unobstructed in their content.
However, if we know more words, if our vocabulary is rich and wide - does the “cleanliness” of the communication increase? If we can describe our ideas with larger set of terms, closely related, but different in their tiny, specific characteristics - does it diminish the large gap that exists between one person’s understanding of the word and another’s? Does it reduce the amount of possible content we can pour into, at the first glance, identical form or it actually doesn’t matter?
We came to the conclusion that, yes, the width and depth of our vocabulary facilitates the expression and reception of an idea and brings us closer to the utopical concept of “complete, clear communication” that probably does not exist in this dimension.
I kept thinking about that as I was left kind of disturbed and at unease about the sad reality that complete communication with another human being is not possible - that all we do is talking to ourselves, while living in the illusion we are talking to another. However, just 20-30% of our communication and interaction is verbal, so there’s still lots of place to try to increase the possibility to reach the internal world of another and find the common ground where we can communicate at deeper and more complete way.
While I was sitting in meditation this morning, a memory popped into my mind.
Random and seemingly unrelated to anything, it offered me a new angle and insight on the topic that I just talked about.
When I was around 7, 8 years old (or maybe even younger, I cannot quite well remember) I had to take some pills - cannot recall what for - and as I was disgusted and unable to ingest them by themselves, my mom used to open the capsules and pour the powdery content into a cup of milk, so I can take the medicine without noticing the taste or being resistant to swallowing the big, plastic capsule.
And it came to me: What if communication was just like that? What if the communication - the real, raw, deep, merging communication as an abstract ideal we’re striving for - was like that pill from my memory that we dilute in the milk so we can numb its taste?
Imagine the milk that contains the medicine like the words we use as a container for a deeper energy exchange. The milk tastes the same when there’s a tiny amount of medicine powder inside or when it is completely clean, without anything added to it. The same way, our words can be just that - empty form with nothing inside, or they can contain the seed of communication within, intentionally put there, but with the risk that the receiver will miss it, that they will drink it up, never really tasting the flavour of the seed.
What would be like then to take the medicine by itself, without diluting it and masking up its taste? Many can assist that when words fail and we are left in silence with another, true connection and communication of our souls and hearts occurs. If we cannot be face to face with another person and feel their energy field in live, of course - words are useful, but it is extremely important to keep the awareness of the unstability and ambiguity of their content that varies from one person’s experience to another’s and that the only thing that is constant is their form, which makes us easily fall in the trap that we are actually talking about the same thing when we probably are not. At least, not EXACTLY the same.
I believe we get to “truly, deeply” connect to another, but it happens rarely so through words. In my experience, it happens when we let the fear drop and open our hearts widely, listen with the soul, listen to the truth that exists beyond words, tune into those subtle energies that are being exchanged and push to the side our Ego and self-identity as much as we can.
When we leave out the expectations of what other wants to transmit and truly open up to receiving, when we liberate ourselves from the anxiety and need to respond as quickly as possible - it is in those, calm, raw, vulnerable moments of silence that the connection occurs. It strikes suddenly and seemingly out of nowhere, but it can be intentionally birthed through our decision to stay present, open and vulnerable - and it feels so good. So real. You’ll know that you connected to another when you feel all of your body being bathed in warmth, the cord being pulled between your hearts and tears of joy trying to escape your eyes. It is in those moments that medicine is in its pure form and both parts can taste it and feel its effects on their bodies and souls. I used the word ‘medicine’ continuing the analogy with my childhood experience, but the true, heart-cracking connection with another soul has the most beneficial and healing properties to our emotional and physical body, as well. Therefore, it is a medicine of a sort.
Our job here is to learn and connect, but instead of taking those terms for granted, believing that we know their meaning and how to act upon them - let’s rethink and refeel the meaning of those two.
What does “to connect” mean to you?
How those moments of “true, real and raw” connection feel in your body?
Where do you feel them?
Love you all.