I know, I know…I can hear the squeal of mental brakes locked up, smell the smouldering acrid heat of belts spinning fast on cogs that are jammed and won’t move…did Charissa just say she is an introvert???
Giggle…believe it or not, I am indeed.
So, before I get to my point, I want to preface with this:
I love what my friend Dani writes of and speaks of when she mentions icebergs as a phenomena and metaphor for seeing and understanding what you see. She points out that the vast majority of an iceberg is under the surface, regardless of what is visible on the surface. She then has sort of developed this teaching moment for her readers, derived from her own life practice, and instructs us to understand that we must intention to see, and in that intentionality we can see what we don’t see…granting credence, respect, inferring presence and thus legitimacy to something more, something that exists and extends beyond our own way of defining it.
I think it is this intentionality of being and granting being that informs Dani’s writing and thus infuses it with such potency and presence. And it is also what enables her to see me, something that is a literal miracle to me but the scope of which far exceeds this forum’s ability to reflect or contain.
Anyway, I am an introvert, in that all that is visible is really not that much compared to the things unseen in me, unsaid by me, and unacted on thru me. I have tried to build in an “airlock” in me…a space thru which I try to pass all things before they exit or enter me.
I am much better at filtering the things I allow out than the things I allow in! But I am working on that!
So this post was stimulated by the quote below:
“One of the risks of being quiet is that the other people can fill your silence with their own interpretation:You’re bored. You’re depressed. You’re shy. You’re stuck up. You’re judgmental.When others can’t read us, they write their own story—not always one we choose or that’s true to who we are.”
— Sophia Dembling’s The Introvert’s Way
I think that is what goes on in a lot of ways with a lot of people…and it was an insight moment for me in regards to my dementors. They simply must settle things, and settle them in the way that makes them feel–what? Authentic? Present? Solid? Justified? Affirmed? Secure? Any of those things can drive dementing.
I want to go ya one further: even when it is more benign and less toxic, less radioactive and destructive, the small, daily banal ways that we do this “defining” of others can really be a source of a lot of alienation and separation. The ways we look at our spouse when they are quiet, and we want to know what is up…or the way we imagine our friend when we haven’t heard anything…or the way we speculate on the inside of our teenager’s brain…it might be the one greatest source of separation between people there is…and the truly sad thing is that most of the time the motives are fairly benign!
So…give another go to the quote, and really chew it. Then give some more thought to Dani’s beautiful practice of Intentionality…and then lastly, see what you see, and see what you see by what is unseen!
“Therefore we do not lose heart. Even though our outward being is perishing, yet the inward person is being renewed day by day.
“For our light affliction, which is but for a moment, is working for us a far more exceeding and eternal weight of glory, while we do not look at the things which are seen, but at the things which are not seen.
“For the things which are seen are temporary, but the things which are not seen are eternal.”
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