Thinking is a private act and one’s inner life is singularly one’s own. But while there is no twin to our mind—no other mind can mirror the totality of our thoughts—it can find partial reflections in others. This alone can invigorate the whole being.
I’m talking about a phenomenon where one can resonate with another’s thoughts.
There is an experiment that has left an impression on my mind from younger years. In Physics, resonance occurs when a wave or vibration induces a synchronous vibration in a neighboring object. When you strike a tuning fork nearby another identical tuning fork, the former will induce vibration in the latter and yield the same pitch.
Here’s a demo video from MIT on the experiment:
Whenever I hear the word “resonance” or say “I resonate with you”, this is the image that appears in my mind. It is something like the words in the Les Miserables song,
When the beating of your heart
Echoes the beating of the drum
I love thinking and reading by myself. What’s even greater though is being able to talk about those thoughts, about what I’ve read with someone who gets it, who understands and shares my excitement, and then supplements the thoughts. I gain a lot of mental energy from this.
My sharp friend Amy is one of these special people in my life. The other day we were on the phone gushing about Bryan Stevenson, books and community, and prison ministry. How awesome. Every girl needs a pal like this!
The process of thinking is solitary. But the fruits of thinking are meant to be communal. Herein lies the miracle: instead of having less, these fruits multiply when shared.
Image credit: nightwolfdezines at Vecteezy