Monday, January 16, 2012

Icebergs



Approximately 10% of an iceberg is visible above the water line. The density of ice is 0.9167 g/cm³. The density of salt water is 1.025 g/cm³.
0.9167 g/cm³
------------------- = 89.4% ~ 90%
1.025 g/cm³.

It struck me today, how much of ourselves no-one, and I mean NO ONE else ever sees or knows about us. I don't have the foggiest idea what percentage of ourselves we share with others, but even if one takes into account sharing some things with some people, other things with other people, I would be surprised if we do much better than icebergs at revealing our True Selves to one another. Now I will grant you that there are things that we do well to keep to ourselves, that are either of little or no interest to others, or they are gross, or they are just TMI.  Even allowing for information that would be of little value and certainly not appreciated if shared, I think that most of us are simply afraid of revealing things that we think and feel and believe and hope and dream and worry about and remember, to other people in our lives.

I would even go so far as to bet, that the person who tells you "my life is an open book" means that there are multiple volumes to their life and only ONE of them is really open to be shared with others. Why does this concern me? In part, I am concerned that what we do NOT SHARE may be some of the things we MOST HAVE IN COMMON with other people. Each of us creates and manages the person we choose to present to the people in our lives. And thus we are not the same person to our children, as to our spouse or "significant other". We are not the same person to those we love as to those we bear ill will. What the "self " does best, is manage what gets presented to whom; when and how as well are decided by our selves. 

And so it is absolutely amazing when we meet someone who wants to don the wet-suit, put on the SCUBA gear, and find out more about us than we typically choose to reveal. Because while we can manage what we present to the world, we cannot totally hide that which we do try so hard to keep hidden. And most of us have so much more to us than we have the courage to show to the world. And yet, it still seems to me that it is extremely rare to meet someone who does not remind me of an iceberg.

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