Each of us resides in our own world. It may be one we created, one we filtered out from experience, or one that revolves around our investments in habit and attention. Once established and found comfortable, it becomes a prism (or a prison) by which we navigate the greater world at large: our chosen and given environments, communities, and points of interest. We avoid or engage based on the sanctity and security of these worlds. Letting the walls drop to enter another’s world might be the greatest act of care a singular being is capable of.
To allow is to give permission, to give the necessary time or opportunity for. There is entering to be with and entering to make an obligatory visit. The latter is constantly plotting its escape. Visits get timed. They are an intrusion upon your world, a gift of time, energy, and attention. Being with isn’t transactional. It is sharing and receiving freely… simultaneously, reciprocally. There is no scores or counting to track. There is nothing to lose, and therefore, nothing to control.
It’s less about whom comes to who and more about how you stay. Are you open to being moved? Can you follow and follow along; lead when leading is needed and listen to what is really being expressed? Do you let rules and titles determine how circles of relationships should work, or does each person you interact with qualify as a human who might need to be cared for, validated, and seen?
A world is a noun of the multiverse: a person, place, or thing. Many times it is a person or thing within a place. The cause and effect use reversible arrows. You are not there to change A or B. Rather, to observe and reflect these observations in a way that allows them to be heard and accepted as a truth. The ecosystem must self-regulate. Otherwise you will become stranded and appointed caretaker; Dorothy in color who longs for black and white.
Like Dorothy, one must leave the world they know in order to appreciate it. A gratefulness develops. New trends toward exciting, but once the novelty wears off, conflicts appear. The where and what of familiar starts to resent or replicate. Human characters in this character of a place become heroic or villainous, either with you (and whatever you are trying to do here) or against you. Victory either way is to influence and be influenced, to change or be changed for the better.
The purpose behind entering worlds is to experience different ways of being.
With the kids I am charged to teach, the school itself is a particular world, and their role within it generally trends to be a compliant student. What am I expected to do and how much of myself do I want to be seen (and whom do I feel safe enough to reveal that to)? Luckily, the gym within that school represents an entirely different set of rules and expectations. There is a looseness and flexibility to co-create a shared world of input and investment, where the outcomes are personally valued and reinvested.
With my parents, there is the world I willingly and eagerly left, only to return to when their lives were in danger. I was willing to re-enter when the context of my own seemed flailing. School was a nightmare and exhausting. Without being able to do what I typically do there, I decided to come home and see if I can do it there, with the people that raised me. The prodigal daughter returned, but this time to stay as long as necessary. I became a part of their world investigating what is instead of an outsider who had already passed judgement on what it was like.
With my peers, I go to them to get to know them. I see their world in their way, and how we interact and where they decide to lead me speaks volumes. It is akin to meeting and continuing your journey with the Scarecrow, Tin Man, and Lion; a deeply special and intimate self disclosure. (Contrast this to the ‘show’ put on by the Lollipop Guild, in both production value and number of beings.). The Wizard we seek, like home, is in us. We just need another to pull back the curtain and reveal the truth.