How often have you considered the meaning of shaking hands with another person? Have you ever denied shaking someone’s hand? Did you give a reason? What was it about? In an era of mistrust the idea of shaking hands is suspect. Does the person have a weapon up their sleeve, are they trying to convince me of their sincerity or display a sense of trust to me? Is this a gesture of friendship, a deception to take some advantage or just an unconscious formality?
The history of the handshake is somewhat unknown. If you want to know more about it you can simply look it up online but for today I simply want to question what it means for you and me and how we can bring more consciousness into our relationships. It begins with a handshake and a clenched fist, an open mind, heart and hand on one pole and a closed mind, heart and hand on the other pole. The question for me is about congruency. Does it mean what it implies?
What arises in your emotional grid when you see an open hand being offered to you or another? What does the message immediately imply to you? What does seeing a clenched fist being offered evoke emotionally? It seems obvious and yet each can evoke different feelings depending on the situation and persons involved. I recall being deceived by persons shaking my hand as well as misunderstandings being created by a clenched fist I was holding up.
For the most part, shaking hands in whatever way it manifests is a gesture of cordiality. It can also bear witness to friendship and loyalty, a display of trust, a pledge or bond, alignment with another and peaceful intention to be pursued. Unfortunately it can also simply be a socially accepted formality that means nothing more than that. Further along the spectrum of distancing, it can be an act of deception to disarm and take advantage. Here, discernment is important.
The next time you shake hands with someone and they with you, look directly into their eyes and feel their presence with intention. Take the opportunity in these few seconds of touching to really connect and feel who this person is and let them do the same with you if they allow it. Bring conscious caring attention to them and potentially touch in a deeper way, soul to soul. What does this directive bring up in you? Fear, enthusiasm, joy, possibilities, embarrassment?
What I’m getting at here is how we bypass the deeper soul connections with each other, subject to subject, even when the opportunities present themselves. We allow our fragile personalities to run the show disallowing any deeper connections with our True Selves and miss the depth perspectives our souls long for. We collude with the shallowness of our cultural milieu and bypass the depths of who we are at the soul or essential levels of awareness while furthering our disconnections and alienations. Even while shaking hands, we may be clenching our fists.
- Sit in silence and stillness to feel the deep longing of your soul. What’s it asking of you?
- Put your hands together and feel the dynamic pulse of abundant Life energy flowing within.
- Ask a friend to clasp your hands and look into your eyes for a moment. Feel the Oneness flowing between you as you let go of your resistance to this infinite interconnectivity.