Genuineness Puts Us at Risk

Genuineness in Relationships

Genuineness is a rare commodity these days. But of all wondrous things I’ve experienced in my years doing therapy, nothing compares to engaging with a person soul-to-soul. Something amazingly powerful and transforming happens when people “get real” with one another. The spirit of love truly flows. And when it does, power and healing naturally follow.

Sometimes, it takes every bit of effort a person can muster to remain genuine during an intimate encounter. Staying out of your head and outside of the confines of your ego tests a person’s mindfulness.  But genuineness is worth its price. And its rewards are very predictable. Problems resolve. Life improves. Deep connections are made. The meaning and purpose of life become clearer.

But genuineness also brings risk. When you’re genuine, you open yourself up. You make yourself vulnerable, which means you can be hurt. Even your faith can be shaken.  But falsehood invites a far worse fate. Its price is a prison of false security and separation. The boundaries we impose on ourselves keep us from really living – loving- connecting! We consign ourselves to the ultimate hell: emptiness and aloneness.

Living and Loving’s Biggest Challenge

It’s challenging to be civil and generous. That’s especially when we don’t feel like it. But it’s even more challenging to be sincere and genuine in all our encounters. Our culture is replete with superficiality. We’re bombarded with so-called “reality” shows that are carefully scripted – utterly fake. And they showcase audacious personae possessing about as much substance as air.

Phoniness surrounds us. Some of the superficial personae we encounter became that way unconsciously to avoid emotional pain (as with “neurotic” personalities). But others knowingly and deliberately present a false self to deceive, manipulate, and exploit (as with disturbed and disordered characters). The result, however, is the same: we rarely know who the people we deal with really are. Still, each of us can make a difference in this regard. We have the power to be genuine in our encounters. And it’s only within such encounter that two people can find their true value.

Love in Action

We’re “commanded” to love. It’s the great “co-mission” (an inherently participatory endeavor!). And we’re urged to do this without reservation – free of the worldly “attachments” that so often hold us back. As a famous rabbi once said: “God is a verb.” You have to put yourself into the world and in your own inimitable way to even begin to know that greater reality.  And to experience Love’s fullness, you must knowingly and freely give yourself away.

Tidbits

My full interview with HBO Vice News Tonight was cut from the program that aired on February 1.  But Folks who have the HBO app can see parts of the interview. Find a recording of the interview at this link.

Character Matters will air live this Sunday, February 26, 2017 at 7 pm Eastern (4 pm Pacific). Call in at (718) 717-8296 to join the conversation.

Please tell your friends about my books and the timely articles on this blog.

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2 thoughts on “Genuineness Puts Us at Risk

  1. Authenticity does put us at risk but not with other authentic people. The risk comes from the neurotics and CDs with their judgements and hostility. Since some of my ordeals with both actually I’ve found some very authentic, caring and empathetic people locally. Funny thing is they’ve also been through emotional trauma with the disturbed beings in our midst.

    Knowing how CDs react and treat people is a major plus when you have been through the mill with them. Having other people around you who fully understand what you have been through and who fully understand exactly what you are talking about is very supportive. Without them we are alone and sit in constant judgement by those who have no understanding whatsoever.

    I find myself being very discerning these days particularly with people I chose to spend my time with. There are some I will be totally authentic with (others like me) and others who I will withhold from insomuch as not share intimate information with, or as much of it. Neurotics can often betray us but unconsciously as opposed to deliberately and maliciously as CDs do.

    The benefits of authenticity are without exception and are pure magic. I long for the day when absolutely everybody I know will be authentic. Currently I have quite a few close friends who are then you have the odd assortment of friends and family who aren’t. I tend so spend more time now with one on one encounters or small gatherings with those who are authentic and much less time with the others. Sometimes I simply can’t handle even being around neurotics – just about everything about them I find irritating at times – irritating might not be the right word. The topics of their conversations can be annoying combined with they way they judge and condemn others and the small minded chit-chat does my head in at times. I just don’t want to be involved with that. I can be when I’m in the mood for it but most times I’m actually not. It’s these times I just don’t stay around. I just can’t do it anymore. I’d rather be alone with my animals – preferring to dedicate my time to something beneficial, uplifting and nurturing. I have been like this for a good while now but I am far less tolerant since the last 2 plus CD infested years. I think I’ve gone past the point of no return in patience for neurotics and CDs!

    I think it comes down to the right balance. We can’t do too much of one or the other. In a perfect world we would be only ever surrounded by authenticity but this isn’t a perfect world. Sometimes it’s fun to go the tavern and have a few beers and a couple of laughs but I couldn’t do it all the time. Sometimes it’s more preferable for quite gatherings with those who we have a special bond with – our kindred spirits. Other times solitude is preferable. Too much of any and we end up with an imbalance.

    At least I am much wiser now after those 2 plus years of CDs and I am a lot more particular about how I spend my time and who with.

  2. I love reading these articles. Two months ago the healing person appeared like an angel and I took a risk to be open, and he/she also did. It had such a positive power that I couldn’t understand what is happening, only 2-4 weeks after I understood that she/he had made a hole in my big bag of everything and it flown away, I’ve lost few kilos. I don’t think I will ever meet someone like, and I never did.

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