Why I believe touch is important?

2020| author

Touch, especially human & animal, provides rush of information and feelings of emotions which maybe beyond our personal perspective of understanding it. It is the most vulnerable & valuable tool to make a direct connection with the other; it is an act of safety & trust; it soothes the connection. Touch has a power to heal, it is a closest form of intimate expression to humankind. The basic warm touch calms down the stress. A compassionate touch can release oxytocin (the „love“ hormone). It is sometimes seen as an illusion-breaker, so to say: for example, in a sudden head rush that may cause someone to faint when interpreted by touching another object or a person may break that rush; one may fantasize about another object or person but when one is in physical contact with the fanatasized material- there is a very less chance of denying the „truth“ (unless the Ego of sticking to the illusion jumps in) it reveals when the „reality“ meets the „fantasy/ies“.

Going through the pandemic, I realized that I never thought that touch would be a dangerous act on such a global scale. Now, I feel that touching another human body has become an evil act- you are responsible for the life of the other. But didn't this exist already? Didn’t other deadly diseases due to touch or physical closeness with another human body exist in earlier times? Hasn’t it been a tool which could be manhandled and seen dangerous when it has caused certain pyscho- physiological traumatic experiences via physical abuse, rapes or fights etc.

I suspect that it is not only the ‘touching’ that one longs for, rather it is the touch that gives the emotional rush, exchange & feelings of security, so to say. It is the longing of that kind of touch, which I believe, has existed for a long time and it just boiled up during the Corona times. The difference now would be that the increasing screen time and physical distancing from the people caused all of us to question collectively on our individualistic conscious decisions on such acts & beyond.

An obviously it is not only the touch that is missing- it is the “free” (1) movement between different spaces; a “self-choice” to decide whom to meet, touch or interact with; and the increase in the collective fear in the society in regards of being in contact with other bodies.

I believe that before the ‘screen’ or ‘Corona pandemic time’, the longing of touch was hidden in a certain fear which was individual's "choice" that s/he/they thought one made. They may be based on certain sections of the society that marked that illusion of fear due to racism, system of class, system of achieving a perfect life, etc. ( A project "A New Day" related to this understanding )

How do we differentiate between physical intimacy & emotional intimacy? Aren't they two sides of the same coin?

As an experienced dance/acting performer and pedagogue leading workshops on emotional body (brain is part of the body) dynamics for over a decade, I suspect that one who is in dialogue to their own body or let’s say is in a process of being connected, can sense an alert in their deeper layers of consciousness whether the following act is harmful for itself or not. I do not say we should go out & touch everyone or that every information perceived by an individual is : firstly, interpreted as it is by the mind to what actually happens inside the body ; and secondly, that knowing about it will save oneself- there is whole another story of achieving certain states like that.
Well, there is never either , or _ it is always the „in-between“. What is the in-between of - training one’s self to listen to your instincts, be-in-touch with your body without following in the illusions created through feelings & memory and responding to them and living the shear fear of not touching, maintaining distances, living in constant isolation though process of separation? does this not cause similar or massive effects on the psychological health, thereby the physiological health of the body?

Is physical touching the whole part of the story? What about “touching-without touching”?

I suspect that each one of us has experienced deeper connection with someone without touching them first, or listening a great piece of music had an impact on us or seeing a performance had touched us or have experienced dreams (philosophized to be felt physical connections in parallel world). We have heard, or some of us might have experienced a course of meditation where one can touch other- probably not in the traditional sense or not in the sense of “ ‘body one is in’ to the ‘body the first thinks another soul is shaped in’” touch. Not all these touches are flowers, as one would say. There is also psychological abuse, imagination that causes fear, illusions that have a strange impact on the psyche. Why don’t we focus on these things, rather than boiling on “no-touch, no-touch”? I believe that the impact of not working on these things society has/will have everlasting effects on psychology of the individual not only through a pandemic like this but probably other uncertainties that would hit our civilization.

(1) The words in “ … ” are also questionable, which may be well understood in ref. to the article Zwischen Privatsphäre “,Anand, J, Kupf magazine OÖ, dated 10.06.2020:

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