When you touch something you are thrown back into yourself, but you are accompanied by something of the other – the warmth (or coolness) of the other. I experience myself through touch whether I am touching a rock, the bath water, a book, the keys on my computer, or my grandson’s sweet cheeks. But I am finding a special knowledge of the object I am touching by its temperature. I feel something of the object within me by perceiving its degree of warmth. It seems to permeate me.
This within-ness of the warmth, of the other, is quite a revealing and intimate experience. Much more intimate than seeing it, because seeing requires separation. The sense of warmth requires the relative absence of separation.
When your heart and soul experience the warmth of another’s existence, of their thoughts and feelings and intentions, what could be more intimate? You find yourself perceiving their meaning, their purpose, their love, their suffering, even their becoming. The sensitivity of the soul’s temperature sense is measured by the presence of sympathy, of antipathy and of empathy. How empathic are you? Do you prefer the warmth of sympathy in your perceptions of others? Or do you like the coolness of antipathy. Do you want to control your inner temperature and avoid intimacy or do you want to risk the rising and lowering of your soul’s interest through the permeation of the other’s truth into your truth? Can you maintain your sense of self when someone else gets under your skin?
The soul’s sense of warm is the threshold between our superficial perception of another human being as an object outside us and the intimate conscious perceptions of what lives within them. The next four senses are the senses of love. These four ask more of us than the four senses of participation.
I really love this sense of warmth. It’s like the invitation to the surprises and delights of really knowing another. But it also challenges me with two polar threats. I can lose myself by melting into the other. I can meet the chilling shadow of disinterest. I then must be able to regulate or stabilize my perception of warmth with a soul thermostat.
As you read my thoughts on warmth, do you feel their warmth or do they leave you cool? After I send out any message I will always get a few responses. Some coolly unsubscribe. It is always nice when the unsubsciber takes the time to warm up the “rejection” with a reason. And then there are the incredibly warming notes that express how grateful for or inspired the writer is by my thoughts.
Every message I write brings me a whole range of temperatures. When I begin it’s like diving into chilly waters as I feel somewhat distant from the topic. Then I start swimming around in the mystery of the topic and start warming up to it. By the time I hit the “publish” button, I am warm as toast and wish I could write pages more. Sense the warm of everyone you touch.