M1. I spoke yesterday about my own Soul Searching: About finding our goals in life and about fulfilling our potential.
But we can’t do any of this on our own.
We all need support, whether spiritual or physical.
We need to take others with us on the journeys we make, even if they are inner ones.
Empathy is the most important characteristic humans have. It enables us to live in groups otherwise, we would be rejected. It’s the glue that holds us together.
Empathy and Stories
Unfortunately, communication is group specific. Every group has its own language, mannerisms, rules, etc. And it changes as fashions change, as language changes as circumstances change for the group.
For example, technology has changed everything in the last 20 years regarding communications. We only have to think of the global communications with smartphones, Google Translate, blogging, Twitter, Facebook… need I go on.
Where do we learn all this stuff from? Another example is that grandparents don’t communicate with technology in the same way as children.
Empathy is learned as we interact with other people. But the basic circuits for empathy are built into our brains. We just have to adjust those circuits to the environment we live in and learn the local empathy language.
Btw. For me, empathy is the ability to understand and share the feelings of another.
Stories we read such as romance novels, news articles, business practices and the like all prepare us for better empathy.
Dreams as Rehearsals
Books and stories enable us to imagine “what if” scenarios such as how people in company cultures interact, or how families argue and experience healing, or how lovers fight and make-up, etc. All this is a learning experience for more empathy.
So in dreams, we have multiple dream characters roaming around and doing weird things. People and things react in strange ways. But the essence is that they are all “what if’s”.
The difference is that they are our “what if’s” rather than society’s “what if’s”.
By looking at our dreams, we can see the differences between what society expects and what we personally think.
If our dreams are in-line with the stories and norms of society then we are in accord with our society or group. If our dreams are radically different and irreconcilable with society’s norms and stories then we will find ourselves in conflict not only with society but in conflict with ourselves.
Something to think about.