“Interactions with people, strangers or otherwise, are important. Maslow’s next level of need is emotional fulfilment. He talks about love & belonging. You can’t really make space for that in life unless you have food & shelter sorted & safety from danger. Relationship bonds might come in the form of a marriage partner, familial relationships, close friends or even bonds to communities such as special interest groups. It may not feel the same to have a bunch of mates down the model railway club as it does to have a deep relationship with a life partner but, ultimately, those connections with other, shared interests and plans, offer an acceptance that is a basic human need.
With a growing sense of belonging amid my fellow campers I spent the evening drinking the wine, eating Kit Kats, playing on Facebook and wondering just how sociable strangers are on camp sites. I guessed that people are quite friendly, happy to offer assistance if you ask, but there’s a personal space boundary at their door so, while I might have fantasised about sharing the bottle of rum with some new friends in the camper in Lincolnshire, or the people at Karma Farm, that was never going to happen. But it probably does show that the expectations of the farmer who said I had to camp next to the rubble were not as she might have expected. People are often more generous than we might imagine.
Had a random gift of a couple of Kit Kats, a cup of tea & the loan of an extension lead made me feel a part of their community & given me the sense of belonging that Maslow described?”
Abridged extract from In SatNav We Trust – A search for meaning through the historic counties of England exploring belief, rationalism, science and religion. A personal journey, autobiographical account, philosophical musings & characters along the way – a unique interpretation of life’s big questions using historic architecture, heritage, history & engineering, to explore & reflect on concepts of science & belief.
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