An animal raised in a cage will not act the same as one raised within its natural surroundings. Exposure to such loneliness and pain creates more and more defense mechanisms. Fear begins to take over their lives. Sometimes the fear is so painful that buffers are added in, like a shutting down of the mind to dull the pain. It seems odd that we do not see this as systemic in our world. Humans have built a massive cage with many walls made of all kinds of things, and we are living in it. We see glimpses of life outside the cage in the wagging tails of our dogs and in connection to those we love and in the eyes of a newborn.
Our hearts are confused. They have been trained to shut down. My mind and body are fighting this change and search for the heart. I have been ruled by fear for so long that my default pattern of thought is to worry about what we will do next, what needs to be done, what will be worth doing. I try to distract myself from this fear by watching Netflix or having a beer or cooking a meal. I am now at least very gracious that I can see the pattern, even if I have yet to find out how to reverse it.
It’s much like the top layer of sand after the rain. The water changes the way the sand behaves and feels. It clumps together and can hold its shape. While underneath the sand is still loose and the sun slowly pulls the moisture from the crusty top layer. With even a small amount of force it falls apart again to loose grains. Its much more difficult to keep the clumps together than to separate them. And if the water doesn’t return, eventually it will fall apart again.