Have you ever heard of an exercise that’s done in personal development courses called “If you really knew me….”? It’s designed to create a greater depth of intimacy among the members of the group by sharing something of a personal nature. By opening up about a subject where there’s been fear or embarrassment attached to it, the speaker has an opportunity to let go and move on. And maybe even discover that they aren’t the only one.
When Daniel and I were walking on the beach today, something occurred to me to share that I’ve never mentioned in 20-plus years of knowing each other. A little thing, an obvious thing, but nevertheless never spoken. Now, I can tell you what it is: I can’t remember the lyrics and melodies to songs. I just can’t.
Daniel had to test me with some songs like ‘Eleanor Rigby’ and ‘Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds’, but I could only get the first line. Yes, I can sing ‘Happy Birthday’ and a very few other songs, but pretty much I’m a follower.
What interests me is how little we probably know about each other, even those of us in intimate relationships. Information that could be shared is perhaps considered too inconsequential, shameful or immodest to share, so is stuffed into a storage closet that might not be opened again.
Ultimately, does it matter?
Tada sarvavaranamalapetasya jnanasyanantyjjneyamalpam
When the mind is free from the clouds that prevent perception, all is known, there is nothing to be known.*
*Patanjali’s Yogasutras, translation and commentary by T.K.V. Desikachar.