The complexities of seeking love in the twenties amidst the blue glow of a screen and the challenges of discerning the reality of another, whose confident keystrokes and articulate prose may hide red flags otherwise gleamed when spending time in their physical presence. Is this intimacy or an illusion of intimacy based on intellectual and emotional exchanges?
It is hard to gauge because behind the comforting veil of screens, secrets and dreams are freely shared, crafting a sanctuary of vulnerability in the vast expanse of cyberspace. Words flowed freely, like a river unleashed, carrying the weight of confessions and desires that might have hesitated in the hesitating air of face-to-face encounters, a paradoxical intimacy built on the liberty of distance and the safety of pixels.
A poet of the heart, an architect of eloquence and a painter of emotions with the strokes of well-chosen phrases as the glow of the screen bathe words in a gentle light, masking the nuances of facial expressions and the subtleties that only the physical presence of a person could convey. The unspoken language of eye contact and the vulnerability of a shared physical space remain absent, the pauses between messages become an echo of the intimacy that exists only in the realm of ones and zeros.
For many who did not grow up online, you will recall staring at images of a ‘beloved’, engaging in imaginal conversations, or indeed writing to a penfriend builds pictures alternate to an embodied reality, as your imagination is fuelled by the potential of who you think they are. That is the Boomers and Gen X’s equivalency of what is now happening, except that a photo didn’t respond!
It may be useful to remember the saying, ‘don’t meet your heroes; you’re always going to be disappointed’?
After all, when face to face, vulnerabilities are always revealed. In the meeting of eyes and the multi-nuanced tones of real conversation, true intimacy begins to unfurl its wings. What is effortless in the virtual cocoon now faces the challenge of the tangible world, where emotions cannot be edited and confessions cannot be backspaced. Moreover the comfort of space is eroded in the nakedness of presence, just as the honesty of presence and true, authentic availability becomes transparently apparent by the willingness to show up and be available.
In the safe pristine halls of the remote connection, anyone can be ‘photoshopped’ and love can seem clean, pure and honest. What many forget, despite countless hours of online chatting, messaging and face time, is that love, after all is said and done, is a messy business. It sweeps into your life, leaving trails of stardust and chaos in its wake. It is dirty, tangled, a wild tango of emotions that stains the soul and colours the mundane with hues of passion. Love doesn’t tiptoe; it marches in with muddy boots, tracking desire and vulnerability across the pristine floors of reason. It’s a field where hearts engage in a skirmish of ecstasy and heartbreak, leaving scars that tell tales of both joy and sorrow. Love is the unfiltered, raw essence of humanity—a bittersweet, beautiful business and a place where you find the most profound truths of the heart.
But some truths remain simple in matters of the heart -presence to physically show up; simplicity; availability to meet without complexity; no collateral damage that will generate karmic binds; honesty and transparency. Without those qualities, building true soul intimacy may not be possible regardless of whatever intimate exchange transpires under the tapping of your fingers.
Art by Bansky
Reflections under the Venus quincunx to Uranus from Cardinal Air to Fixed Earth