Are you a dog being wagged by its tail? Most are.
Ever witness people arguing over what is ultimately a matter of syntax? And in fact they were saying the same thing? It even grows very negative. I would say in a sense it’s the rule with few exceptions. The evil of semantics.
Would you rather be right, or happy? It seems people would rather be right, thus the stasis and it isn’t even about ego. It is the environmental scanning, reality checking. They are in the panic of normal life so they very much have to be right. Their normal life depends on being right.
You can remove all boundaries, but they don’t go away. Like fear, you just loose engagement with them. They have a life, a reality. There is a world beyond these concerns, but in the effort to transcend and be free…well, we are very busy being free. We get very involved and invested in going beyond. We walk with our feet or without. Some try to walk with their beliefs, walk on water. To date in my experience, it doesn’t work very well.
So meaning is your reality. How can you bridge? Do you want it broader? It’s possible, but if you are enamoured of your language…well, Zen treats it as a barrier for a reason. You can use your language, but consider that your language isn’t you. That you can move in the language. When you move into another’s reality you are in their language. You make camp only at their expense, but you can do something. They say when in Rome, do as the Romans do. You don’t have to be Roman to do as the Romans do, and if the new territory is really vile, really truly beneath you, you need not stay. But if it’s good maybe you will bring home souvenirs, and maybe that souvenir will be a phone that lets you keep in ongoing contact with that other reality.
A meaning tourist? Yes, you can be an immersive tourist. Blend and not disturb the natives, or you can be an obnoxious tourist and insist they take your countries money. Not honouring the law of exchange. It is a law. When you won’t honour the law of exchange your words can’t be honoured. Depending on how much you refuse, you may need to be arrested all together.
In Japan you will be largely ignored and people say that it’s rude. It isn’t. Most occidentals (westerners), even well meaning ones still seek attention. They do assimilate, and they do a lot, but it happens when it’s presented right. The Japanese called the Chinese gaijin, roughly meaning barbarians. Very different culture, but they do have familiarity with each other and familiarity bread contempt. Still does. Some cross that boundary. Some Chinese do emigrate to Japan or rather have in the past, but they didn’t just transplant their culture. They gained respect or honour by first confronting the realities of Japanese culture. Then their differences were respected. The same applies to American business men. This is a reason that song with the lyric “I think I’m turning Japanese, I think I’m turning Japanese, I really think so” was written. You can’t truly be what you aren’t, but you can acknowledge and give place to realities beyond your own. And when you do, you open the opportunity to grow it from inside.
They say if you can’t meditate, travel. People can travel in a lot of ways. Movement is one of those universals.
Your thoughts are welcome. Be well friends.