Touch & Connectivity

Together we have filtered through our differences towards a common experience which embraces all of our differences.”

”As we increase our knowledge of ourselves, we increase in understanding and compassion for others.”

”When we touch someone, they touch us equally.
— Bonnie Bainbridge Cohen

I found the above quotes, from the book Sensing, Feeling and Action by Bonnie Bainbridge Cohen, to be truly enlightening.  I came to the text as a selection for Bebe Miller's Floor Work/Somatics class here at OSU.

These thoughts bring up an interesting point that in our own self discovery, we grow in our capacity to understand and connect to others around us.  We often consider introverts or self-studiers to have some sort of social disconnect, or in some cases we may read that internalized reflection as narcissism or self-involvement.  I appreciate this alternate line of thinking that through the inner illumination of ourselves, we are, in effect, connecting energetically with others; gaining a deeper level of understanding and empathy.

This is illustrated most obviously in the general notion of the "worldy" person, who perhaps is well-traveled, as having a greater understanding of a variety of different cultures, and (hopefully) thus has a greater sense of compassion and empathy for others; accepting their differences as they are.  Often, but in no means across the board, people who have seen little of the world may have a harder time understanding or even accepting other perspectives seated in cultural differences.  I see that Ms. Bainbridge Cohen's notion of 'increasing our self knowledge, and in turn increasing compassion and understanding for others' is a way around the potential result of a limited world view.  It reminds me of that age old saying, "walk a mile in their shoes" and then you might understand them.  It is a nice way to think about the connection of inner discovery to that of discovering the world around us as well.