We are coming to the dog days of summer now. Lammas eve is tomorrow, the first of the 3 harvest festivals in Celtic calendar. These are often the hottest times of the summer and yet the fading of the light is already apparent. Although I haven't been in school for a number of years I still feel a tie to the academic year and memories of summer vacations winding down always bring my mind back to simpler times. This is not to say I long for those days for they are weighted with regret. I wandered without much direction or purpose in my youth, the road continually vanishing beneath my feet. I regret time wasted and opportunities left unclaimed. This may be why I try to keep myself occupied, so I can appreciate the long hot days when I am not busy as a respite rather than feel abandoned by the currents of life.
When we get to the tail end of summer just as winter we can often feel stuck in the fabric of time. The external world has not offered much in the way of hopeful signs lately. The siren song of cicadas has been drowned out by the circus of two political conventions in the past two weeks. Social media has become a minefield of navigating the various degrees of vehemence on the left and the right. Part of me just wants to check out, and in point of fact I have been spending more time in deep meditations and journeying. This is good in one way in that I am getting caught up with some of my personal spiritual work. Still I know my tendency is to numb myself with transcendental states and disengaging from the 3-D realm around me. The difference these days is that I am not just passing the time in an insulated dream. I am actively seeking knowledge and empowerment so that when I plug back into our collective world I am more effective at implementing changes in my life as well as the lives of others.
I was having a deep conversation (my favorite kind) with a good friend this week talking about my self perceived faults on not being able to connect well with many people. However I was not taking in account that what is often depicted online and in other media about relationships is often scripted. On average people connect on the surface of things and have very few people that they share deep ties with. This is one of the reasons that many of us struggle with family issues. We are deeply connected to them, more so than anyone else except maybe a spouse. We are vulnerable to them whether we want to be or not. We go out of our way to not reveal our vulnerabilities to others. Now I am not saying we should be shouting out to the world our deeply held feelings and vulnerabilities. I've learned the hard way that just because I feel an intense connection with someone it doesn't mean they are meant to be let inside my sanctum. It's tough I am an introvert that loves people (in small groups, not in public spaces or noisy events...I know I don't ask for much do I).
I remember speaking to an immigrant out of West Africa, she told me most of their songs were about rain, because rain was scarce. When she came here she noticed most of our songs are about love and she wondered if love was a rare commodity in our culture. She may be onto something. I think many of us operate under a love deficit, or rather an intimacy deficit. We have so much to distract our senses now that we often neglect developing deeper connections, and yet that is what we all on some level are looking for either in our current relationships or in seeking new ones.
So why am I telling you all this. Well if you're anything like me you want to connect with people and share an understanding. You want to find your tribe where you can be you and feel like you fit. Many of us give up the search and settle for the surface currents of life, we watch tv, skim our Facebook feeds, and check our likes and comments rather than engage in the world. We have tools at our disposal that can help us connect with others who share our values and interests and yet I've heard this from people over and over that when they put up an event if a dozen people say they're coming only one or two show up. We have so many crutches for interactions now that we often excuse ourselves from the possible awkwardness of interacting.
How about you? Are your needs for deep meaningful connections being met? Do feel starved of affection and understanding? Are you convinced there is something terribly wrong and unlovable about yourself? Well many of us feel that way from time to time. Your pain doesn't make you special so try not to confuse yourself with it. In each of us exists a capacity for beauty either through our form, our movements, in our dealings with others, or the work of our hands and spirits. If you find yourself in a dry spell for connection don't despair. There are people who feel exactly the same way, and if we make connecting a priority we can help each other out. Is your past littered with "failed" connections? Well guess what the past is relevant only if you decide it is. It can be your guide for what to look out for instead of a prophetic playbook. So while the warm days last, before the light wanes and the trees fade make an effort to seek those connections out. Not every one will work out, but that's part of the process. Find your tribe and sing your song, I'll be listening for it on the summer breeze.
Peace and Blessings,