The deepest need of man, then, is the need to overcome his separateness, to leave the prison of his loneliness.*
But we know exactly how we and where we can be hurt and why. That is as good a definition as any of self-consciousness. We are aware of our own defencelessness, finitude and mortality. We can feel pain, and self-disgust, and shame, and horror, and we know it. We know what makes us suffer. We know how dread and pain can be inflicted on us – and that means we know exactly how to inflict it on others.**
Here is Jordan Peterson’s description of nakedness, having reflected on the Genesis story of Adam and Eve’s eyes being opened to their nakedness, far more than having nothing to wear. It had all begun with eating the fruit of good and evil.
If the human story ended there, we’d be in trouble, but we know how to include wonderful stories of mercy and grace, of forgiveness and new beginnings.
It’s about knowing how we’re all naked in the ways Peterson lists and to cover them with some love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, gentleness, faithfulness and self-control.^
Fruit from another kind of tree we get to shake the fruit from today.