Have you ever tried talking with a religious zealot who calls at your door with the intention of trying to convert you? It can be a frustrating experience because the breadth and depth of the exchange is continually restricted by the beliefs of the visiting missionary. It’s impossible for the discussion to go very far, and soon you start feeling cramped, as if you’re being forced to walk down a very narrow corridor.
If two people meet and they’re are open to evaluating their positions, seeing where the discussion takes them and being present to whatever arises, then the conversation becomes alive. It’s no longer restricted and controlled by belief and fear; it has the freedom to go wherever it wants to go. I call these kind of exchanges ’travelling conversations’.
I watched a Louis Theroux programme recently on the subject of polyamory (having intimate relationships with more than one partner, with the consent of all partners involved.) It’s a very modern, contentious approach to relationships and it turned out to be a fascinating and confronting watch. It worked as a documentary because of the intelligence of Louis and the interviewees, and their willingness to honestly examine their opposing positions through travelling conversations. Of course, viewers who are open and unfettered by belief get to use these conversations as a mirror to evaluate their own opinions on the subject of relationships.
Since my first book The Story of ‘You’ came out as an e-book, I’ve had a few travelling conversations (via e-mail) with people who’ve written to me. It’s fascinating and heartening to hear how, all over the world, people are discovering Life Beyond Personality.
One day, reading back through the e-mails, it occurred to me that they might be of interest to others who are on this journey. After all, though we each have our own particular points of contact with this enquiry, some subjects – and questions arising from them – are common to all. With this in mind, I’ve started a new kind of Blog – a Correspondence Blog – in which I share some of the travelling conversations I’m engaged in online. I hope they will become a useful resource: a place for you to dip into and find sustenance, encouragement and a sense of connectedness with others who are engaged in this wonderful, mysterious enquiry.
The first correspondence blog is with Lewis from Wiltshire. Our travelling conversation takes us through the subjects of: Openings, Fear, What is the Self? and ‘Non-Duality Speak’. You can read it here.