Staying connected

Our path by Kit No Comments »

We always feel connected.  When you leave physically, I don’t feel that anything has changed between you and me, and when we come together again, there is no need for any adjustment.  This happens after sex, too; there is no break in intimacy.  All this contrasts with former relationships, which interleaved connection and alienation.

So what are we doing differently?

I think with others, I withdrew to regain my sense of self, because I had lost it in several ways.  One was the limitations on behavior that many people impose.  Another was the need for silence; as an introvert (and I was more so in those days), too much company too long was exhausting.  Lastly, the experience of merging with another, though ecstatic, was a different unfamiliar world, and maybe after a while I had to return to the familiar.

To stray from the personal a bit, I think many people connect from a sense of incompleteness; they want the other to assuage their needs, substitute for their inadequacies, fix their sense of loss, grief, pain.  This only works for a while, as the underlying needs reappear; they must be confronted on their own, not salved by taking from another.  For the partner, the constant supply of support can become a Sisyphean task.

With you, none of these happen.  I do not have to watch myself when I am with you, because you let me be who I am.  Oh, thank you!  I cannot say it enough.  You have your own need for space and silence, as do I, and because we remain connected, it is effortless to separate, and to rejoin afterwards.  And lastly, I welcome the ecstasy and experience it as an addition to myself, not as an alternative.  Whether this is due to knowing myself better or how you take part, I cannot say.

So to summarise, we remain connected, yet I always feel completely myself.  It is paradoxical, yet indisputable.

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Dialogue by Kit No Comments »

We started by talking about how transcendent sex was and how hard it was to find words for it and I said I would have to speak at 60 words a second to capture the experience and asked if you agreed with the description and you did and I marveled at how our descriptions always agree and you said it’s because we’re having the same experience which is possible because by being completely undefended it allows the merging to take place and the result is that we experience ourselves fully at the same time as the merged experience and it could happen between any two people or a group of people and if it spread it would lead to world peace and I thought wow, I must write this down tomorrow.

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Dialogue, Union by Kit No Comments »

My Dear Kat,

I want to write about union. It’s a difficult subject, especially for me, because it flies in the face of everyday experience, but time after time we have this experience of union, of oneness. It occurs most often when we are sexual, but plain physical contact can bring it out, too. I want to be clear on one point: there is no loss of self; instead, the experience is of myself and of us simultaneously. I don’t mean a sense of you and your body. It’s a sense of a third autonomous center that only comes into existence (or is perceived, don’t know which) when my own ego and intentionality are quietened.

Sounds strange, right? But here’s the next strange thing: that when you or I talk about this, the other says “Uh-huh … yes … right” and there is no disagreement on the experience. I cannot imagine that much agreement happening were we having separate hallucinatory experiences.

So what is going on here? Two factors come into play for me. Firstly, I want to point out that experience trumps theory, or as I put it in my youth, “the fact precedes the explanation”.   Any theory has to accommodate the facts; if it doesn’t, it is deficient. Of course, illusions may exist — the car wheels caught on film appear to be spinning backwards — but the entire body of theory exists IN ORDER TO explain our experiences, so they must have a certain validity. Secondly, I like theories that explain the facts of my world; they organise it, make sense of it, and have useful predictive powers.

Bearing these two in mind, I propose that both realities are true: that we are both separate and one. This contradicts Aristotelian logic. Tough. Light is both a wave and a particle, which doesn’t make sense, either, but the evidence for it is overwhelming.

In order to make this more palatable, let me offer a metaphor: we are like pages in a book. Every page appears unique; it has its own number, its own words, its own meaning, yet we more easily see the book as the unit. Is there a similar one-ness to the world that we are failing to see?

Just as we can come up with a list of differences between you and me, so we can come up with a list of equivalences: culture, nationality, race, DNA, and the very atoms of which we are composed. So maybe we are both an individual and a species; an individual and a life-form; an individual and a collection of atoms. Our culture emphasises individuality, especially in America, so our upbringing teaches us to only see that fact.

But what constitutes an individual becomes less clear-cut the more it is examined. For instance, a single person is not just an arrangement of 10 trillion human cells, but also contains ten times as many microbial cells that are essential to well-being, for instance see here “some researchers think of our bodies as superorganisms, rather than one organism teeming with hordes of subordinate invertebrates.”

In the West, our belief system is built on an egocentric framework. To admit the experience of union it is necessary to expand that framework to allow for its possibility, otherwise any experience of union will be overlooked or dismissed. Having made room for it, we also need a non-egoistic situation where it can emerge. Sex is one such, but it can be found in intimate conversations or communing with nature.

In the West, we use words for explanations and answers, but they fail to satisfy in answering the Big Questions because language works best as a divisive tool. Words classify the world into this and not this, which makes them very unsuited to describe union, or one-ness. Additionally, a word is not the thing; we can only use a word like a pointer, so expecting words to guide us to union is optimistic. Instead, the opposite is true: silence, listening, observing, being open to the present, can guide us there. The knowledge of one-ness is experiential, not verbal.

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The Golden Rule

Dialogue by Kit No Comments »

In yesterday’s post I puzzled over the prerequisites for our level of agreement.  On reflection, I think it needs a full belief in the golden rule, “Treat others as you wish to be treated”, which describes an equivalence between me and you, that we are both equally important.

To act based on this, you have to put yourself in their place for a moment.  A more succinct term for this is empathy, a skill that develops over the years (though it may stall or fall back in some).  Furthermore, it seems likely to me that to increase in empathy is to approach nearer to God, spirit, union or whatever term works for you.

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Dialogue by Kit No Comments »

My Dear Kat,

We had a wonderful weekend together: a delightful blend of togetherness and alone time; working together, and mind-blowing sex, the like of which is so different and transcendent that both of us struggle to find words for it.

I could go on more about the weekend, but instead I’d like to tackle the issue of union.  Take these as preliminary notes on a subject I do not understand.

One of my earliest encounters with this was Alan Watts, who wrote of the self being an illusion.  I took that to mean that the self must be destroyed, vanquished, conquered to reveal the cosmic world beyond, but maybe I misunderstood him; perhaps he meant that the self is not the outer limit to our experience; we see it like the walls of a jail cell, limiting where we can go, but these walls are in fact illusory.  I’d have to read him again to see what he actually wrote.

I remember years ago, seeing some graffiti in Brixton1 saying “Irish Go Home!”  Underneath, someone had written “How about the Scots?  And the Welsh?  Brummies, too.  People from Golders Green.  And those from Herne Hill.2”  A brilliant commentary on where we draw the boundary between friend and foe.  These days I try to expand the range of who counts.  I still struggle with Republicans, though.  Reading Ken Wilber’s ideas about spiritual growth helped here.

Then there are a number of material-world arguments for unity.  I start with the hypothesis that the model of an observer independent of the world is false.

  • Firstly, it leads to the mind-body problem.
  • Secondly, Heisenberg demonstrated the fallacy at the sub-atomic level: the observer and the phenomenon are inextricably linked.  I’m not claiming that Heisenberg extrapolates to the macro world, but I do say that we of necessity interact with it and hence affect it.

So my model is somewhat like a book with pages; we think we are individual pages, but we are connected together in ways that are not seen by inspecting an individual page.

Let me list some of the ways we are, in fact, connected.

  • If you looked at us in 4 dimensions, you would see a single tree.  (I have my doubts about treating time as a 4th dimension, but that’s another topic.)
  • We are, by and large, made up of the same DNA.
  • We are indisputably made of the same stuff: atoms.

And lastly, there is the direct experience that you and I keep having; of US, independently of the individual sense of self.  It is very strange, because it feels like something is there, and it’s not me, and I’m not perceiving it through my senses (because they give rise to the “me” experience), but something is there.  It’s intensified by touch, and even more so by sex, but even under those circumstances, the sense is of familiarity.  One more thing about it: the sense is not of being fulfilled or completed, but of being added to, like finding a complete wing in a house that you never knew existed before.

[1] An inner-city area of London.
[2] An adjacent area of London about a mile from Brixton.

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Presence and Union

Dialogue, Union by Kit No Comments »

Turtle and LilyMy Dear Kat,

To illuminate my main point, I first want to examine what it means to be present.  Yes it’s a cool phrase, and yes I can generally say if it is the case, but what exactly are we talking about?  Here’s my stab at it.

Some things are indisputable because their veracity stems from the experience itself.  Even if it’s an illusion, a mirror, a trick of the light, it’s still indisputably my world.  To the extent that our awareness and attention is on such experiences, we are present.  Phrased like that, presence is a continuum, not a binary state.  Nevertheless, the experience is closer to binary, like a seesaw, because of the way our attention focuses.

And so to my main point; I experience something existing that is not me and not you, but is us.  It is clearer when we are physically together, and most so in sexual union, but it is not simply the sense of touch or the pleasures of the flesh, because my sense of its existence is other than my physical senses.

I struggle to write these words because what I am saying is so beyond my objective, scientific view of the world, yet it fits in with Eastern/spiritual views of oneness and unity.  I feel as if I am in the process of turning a corner and perceiving a whole other landscape.


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The Mystery of Our Sexuality

Dialogue by Kat No Comments »

My Dear Kit,

Thank you for your description of our sexuality. You have touched so well on the magic of our union. When our bodies come together, it is like coming home. There is such a deep sense of fitting, of being in the absolutely right and perfect place.

As I visualize us together sexually, fitting together the way we do, the word peace comes to mind again. And yet our sexual union is filled with excitement, adventure, and highly charged particles moving together. Not something one often associates with peace! Indeed we create a highly charged energy, but not in the usual way. Charge is usually associated with things colliding into and against each other. This is not like that at all. It is all fluid and flowing. There are no hard edges, no bangs and bumps.

It is mysterious. Yes, it is always new, always better than ever before. How can this be? I believe that we are so in union and so in the present moment together, that we are actually able to co-create something new, something that never existed before. The experience of bringing something into being that is a child of our union, the by product of us coming together, is so breathtaking that it almost defies description.

Nevertheless, I enjoy trying to find a way to communicate about it and perhaps even find a way to let others know it is possible to relate in such a manner.

love Kat

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The Probability of Sex

Dialogue by Kit No Comments »

My Dear Kat,

I want to talk about how sex is between us.  It’s fabulous, it’s instant, it’s mutual and it’s shared.

By fabulous, I mean that it’s breath-taking; time and time again, we go to places and achieve highs that we never did before.  I’m not talking about the physical positions; they don’t seem to have much to do with it.  It’s a strong sense that wow, we never danced like this before, we’re going hand-in-hand (maybe make that gland-in-gland) down paths we’ve never been before.  Afterwards, the experience seems so other-worldly, it can be hard to believe it actually happened.

By instant, I mean that the sexual energy emerges full-blown: pow, there it is!  We’re in this place again.  There’s no contradiction with what I’ve just said about each time being different; these two things exist simultaneously.  That’s just the way it is.

Then there is the magical way it’s mutual.  I get turned on, and you respond, and I respond to that, and it’s 0-60 in 5 seconds again.  It happens nearly every time.  Oh, occasionally the other fails to respond due to tiredness or illness, but that causes no grief; we merely flow into a different place.

This mutuality is magical because of its improbability, because it says that I touch you, I affect you, because it is wonderful to be seen and to have my sexual needs so ecstatically met.  And we synchronize like this not just sexually, but also with most other things we do together; we rapidly find the choice that accommodates both our needs.  We do this by being present, by wanting the best for the other, by not clinging to our ideas of how things should be.

Lastly, the experience is so self-evidently shared.  We move together, responding to each other, becoming the junction between the two of us, treating that skin like our own, each our side of the fence, but holding hands through the railing, proof positive of the other, touching and merging to be us together at the same time as remaining completely myself.  I have nowhere in my cosmology to place this, yet there it is.  Not just once or twice, but again and again, over and above my sense of self, that sense of us.

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The Reality of Union

Dialogue by Kit No Comments »

My Dear Kat,

BridgeThis experience of union is a mysterious joy.  I have fleetingly known it before, but with you, it is a regular occurrence.  Yet the rational scientist in me asks if it is an illusion, a trick that nature has dreamed up to facilitate sex, bonding, family and cooperation.  Our senses can often fool us; why is this not the case here as well?

Let me offer some reasons.

  • “The fact precedes the explanation” is a phrase I coined in my 20’s to mean that the raw experience of the world trumps any theory.  At some point I have to take a stand and say that my experience of union is real.  It is stronger when we are in physical contact, and strongest when sexual.  It is as though the point of contact between you and me is us.  I want to be very clear here: this is not the same as feeling your body; that happens at the same time, but is not the same as the joint experience.  There is a strong feeling of mutuality, that what is taking place arises not from you or me; we are but observers of the event.
  • You and I are complex systems.  When two complex systems are joined, interactions and possibilities are created that do not exist in the individual cases.  Two eyes offer depth perception beyond that of one eye. A finger and thumb can perform manipulations that one digit cannot.  Two digits (the binary system) allow a much more compact representation of number than one digit.
  • The idea of a supra-individual consciousness is not prevalent in Western culture, though it has been written about in many places.  See Robert Cloninger, Richard Moss, Ken Wilber, Alan Watts.

This is a rather intellectual response, I know, but it is a radical change in world-view that we’re talking about here, and I feel the need to provide a sound basis for it, both for my own benefit and for use with other people.


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