Wednesday, July 6, 2016

Intensity

If you're an intense person - whether via meditation, or by having overcome tough challenges, or simply because it's how you're configured - you've surely noticed that other people often respond to you in strange and unpredictable ways. The following are counterintuitive insights from 53 years of trying to understand why.

Intensity is most often mistaken for anxiety, because that's such a common channel for human intensity. Anxiety is the clammily inadequate holding pen for our most bombastic impulses (depression is another intensity holding pen, but it doesn't look like it from the outside).

In cases where intensity simply is, rather than having been tamped down into anxiety, it's still (literally) always misinterpreted. The problem is that human beings can't parse free-floating-ness. So they subconsciously associate intensity with some concrete intention - one they're afraid of, or one they habitually obsess over. They make it a thing.
People afraid of anger will interpret the intensity as rage.

People who fear loss of control will interpret it as pushy aggression.

Insecure people will interpret it as arrogant superiority.

Paranoid people will interpret it as nefarious attention on them.

People obsessed with sex will interpret it as sexual attraction, in either direction (this can be a big problem especially if the person is otherwise uninterested; you'll feel like unwelcome attention at best, and, at worst, their ambivalent impulses will be projected back at you in wildly inappropriate ways).

People obsessed with religion will interpret it per the mythology of their particular religion.
Intensity aside, your mere superficial difference leaves you prone to the usual playground social dynamics which arise from "otherness".

The scariest thing is that the the more invisible you try to make yourself, the more nefarious your agenda appears, because it parses as if you're hiding your true intentions...even if you have none.


The same happens, inversely, as well. Many people can't parse their own free-floating intensity, and wind up channeling it into one drive or other. They actually do become obsessed with sex, or religion, or some sort of fear.

When you channel non-specific intensity (i.e. g
eneric radiant love), great things can happen, but there are problems from the unbalancing. We learn to "let go", in meditation, prayer or selfless service, to unkink old habits of intensity constriction. The tremendous "kundalini" energy experienced by advanced spiritual practitioners is the sum of this energy wrenching free from its moorings.

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