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Old 12-28-2012, 08:12 PM
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River River is offline
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Default Framing Intimacy

"Framing Intimacy" is an odd title, I know. But I can't quickly think of a better title for what I hope to discuss.

I'm using the sense of the word "frame" which relates to linguistics, social science and political discourse (anthropology, etc.)... The basic idea is that words and concepts are imbedded in a larger field of words and concepts and meanings..., and therefore a fair bit of "metacommunication" is often necessary in communicating an idea, experience, perception, etc.

Oftentimes a word or idea or concept will be so nearly ubiqutous or popular that its framing will be taken for granted rather automatically by most people. Attempts to create an alternative frame in such situations can be quite challenging, both for the originator of the 'alternative' frame and also for the collaborators in communication. (Communication is always a collaborative art.)

I have something I'd like to talk about, but it is clear that there is no concise way to convey just what it is, because I'm utilizing a particular framing for "intimacy" which needs first to become explicit.

Were we all to just jump in here and talk about our thoughts and feelings about "intimacy," we'd likely discover rather shortly that we're not all applying the same "frame" for this word. Indeed, we may shortly discover that we're dealing with multiple frames with varying kinds and degrees of similarity and dissimilarity. "Intimacy" means different things to different people. It can also mean several differing things to the very same person!

But I'm not here to write an essay in the opening post. I hope for this to be a collaborative inquiry. So I'll just add a few more opening words and then open this up to conversation.

Most broadly, I want to explore and discuss intimacy -- the word and the experience. More narrowly, I'd also like to convey to the interested reader / participant my own tendency in framing intimacy.

Here are some initial hints of my own tendency in framing intimacy. This is the distilled version.:

I tend to think of intimacy (broadly) as "closeness" combined with affection and/or appreciation, warmth, kindness ... along with a willingness to be unguarded, and/or spontanious..., and "vulnerable".

I tend to think of intimacy in relation to knowledge, both in terms of familiarity / knowing and not-knowing. Not-knowing, here, has a sort of "zen" flavor. Not-knowing, here, does not refer to a lack of factual knowledge so much as a willingness to encounter the other/s with a sense of wonder and openness. Further, my tendency is to frame "intimacy" in light of my notion that we can't really be "intimate" (in this frame) without a sense of "wonder" and "mystery," a sense of one's self and the other as largely unknown (or even largely unknowable). Again, "knowledge" here is of the factual / cognitive sort -- which, arguably, is not the only kind of "knowing".

Obviouisly, this thread will be more of interest to the philosophically inclined.
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Last edited by River; 12-28-2012 at 08:46 PM.
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