Chuck’s Place: Encounter with Other

Other…
– Photo by Jan Ketchel

Other, is a separate reality. Other is life in dreams. Other is life in a body. Other is life beyond reason. Other is shadow. Other is other.   

Beyond the protective narcissistic wrapping around self lies other, waiting. This narcissistic sheath serves to homogenize other, blending it for inclusion within the familiar comfort of self, a far cry from true encounter with the mystery of other.

The internal dialogue immediately snatches the waking ego to erase its  dream encounters with other. To connect and journey with other from dream, threatens the ego’s hegemony over its world. To include other would require ego to take in a world far greater than its solid grasp on reality.

Even if the ego takes up the dream, it quickly formats it into the known; all characters fit into associations that lead back to parts of the self. Reason ensconces encounters with other safely within the boundaries of known self, reinforcing all the usual dramas. From here the internal dialogue paints the day, a portrait of self, everywhere.

Reason cannot permit the mystery of other. Though drawn to the magic, it pummels it into logic, sneering smugly, as it brands it childish fantasy. All that is known is provable in experiment, repeatable in the light of day; everything else is fantasy.

Characters in a dream are merely the byproduct of neurotransmitters active in the brain, says reason, just as it judges out-of-body experience to be merely dissociative hallucination. How reassuring for ego to transpose the irrational into order. How protective of self to resist the delusion of other.

That which is not-I can shatter one’s world. Perhaps its worldview is far more comprehensive; suddenly one is nothing. Perhaps one doesn’t feel worthy of other; other will never show up. Longing for other, one hides in excuse.

Perhaps the greatest challenge of our time is our reason’s encounter with the irrational other. So complacent we became with the dominating all-encompassing rule of reason that we dismissed the power of nature, whether in the form of a coronavirus, or an emotional virus, that now holds reason in its grip.

Clearly, reason must accept the power and autonomy of this  irrational other. Denial has led to this compensatory rise of impulse over science itself. Modern humanity is responsible for this uprising because it embraced reason alone as its one true god.

Suspend judgment, get to know the fullness of other in one’s whole self. Take up the challenge of life in the dream. Get to know and fully live in the body, as well. Connect with the universe in the synchronicities and agreements that saturate every moment. Talk to the plants, the birds, and the bees.

Encounter other with openness, respect, and loving kindness. That’s how the world will heal. 

Encountering other,

Chuck

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