︎Universal truthsBear Grasstone, 54
Intimacy is life giving and essential for the development of a healthy society. In my opinion, a really important foundation of intimacy is no judgment. We can get very confused about intimacy. There are so many nicely put “influencing factors” on who we are and who we become. I think that the most critical issue for each of us as individuals and collectively is to aspire to the high human ideal that doesn’t allow for the judgement of others. I am convinced that this is a really important foundation for intimacy. Building on that, emotional intelligence and sensitivity are extremely relevant . Each of us has control over our words and our actions and we must be careful how we use this power with anyone whom we can influence. The risk is that we can use this power over others to programme them to be something they are not, based on our own world view, without even realising we are doing it. This is control and I believe that no one has the right to control another - it is really wrong, and has to be avoided at all costs. We can get tempted to control others but can never justify it.
So for example we have to be very careful to find appropriate ways to have intimacy between men and women who are not in a romantic relationship. I think we need to find ways to make it happen because it's appropriate, helpful and necessary, but so often intimacy between a man and a woman in a non-romantic relationship gets messed up by those involved or those on the outside looking in. Intimacy between a man and a woman does not need to be sexual. The world sexualises or romanticises this kind of intimacy, so that it is not normal. They imagine if two people are particularly close to each other and have an intimate relationship: understanding, chemistry and good communication, that there must be something sexual going on or could be going on. And that will always be the challenge.
We are so often divided by our differences, but it seems to me that there are some universal truths and human values across all societies: care, love, kindness, which are obvious. But there is one which I picked up recently in some widespread research, by which the majority of those interviewed expressed that cheating in relationships was unacceptable. If you are in a monogamous relationship, cheating is considered to be something that you really shouldn’t do. If this is true then I think we are safe to explore emotional intimacy between us as humans, between man and man, woman and woman, man and woman. I might be judged but I live by the adage that it is better to have loved and lost than to never have loved!