I just started (again) reading Joseph Myers’s book titled The Search to Belong and am finding it completely provocative, particularly when Myers’ references Hall’s material on different kinds of space.
Essentially, there are four types of spaces. Public, social, personal, and intimate. Public space is 12+ feet, social is 4-12 feet, personal is 18 inches to 4 feet and intimate is from contact to 18 inches.
I have been, for several years, frustrated with the Sunday morning church routine because folks there (public and social space) don’t seem to be interested in the personal space with other folks. In reality, they weren’t interested in personal space with me.
In reality, it’s about a shared experience and shared space. Time and place. Like bingo contestants every Wednesday at the Knights of Columbus or like the members of a symphony orchestra. Or like a vast sea of men who attend events together in the mountains of Colorado. They might see each other at another retreat/conference in the future, but rarely meet outside of those events. It doesn’t make it any less valid of an experience. Just the level at which most folks want to go. I have been blessed to be in personal and social space with some of these men. Truly an honor to be a part of that level of fellowship.
And the Gospels portray the same thing. Jesus had 4 levels of space. Intimate – with the Father and the Holy Spirit. Personal – James, John, and Peter. Social – the Apostles. Public – the Sermon on the Mount.
I’m still looking for my James, John, and Peter. And I don’t care which knucklehead I end up as.