In lieu of a foreword…
Prokop Divis, 1754, a physics textbook: A difference between electrical potential may occur between the ground and storm clouds. If this difference exceeds the electrical stability of the air layer between the storm clouds and the ground, an electrostatic discharge may occur where the air layer between the ground and the clouds is thinnest.
The cloud is not responsible for the discharge, and yet it is dangerous. It needs to discharge all that pent-up energy into the ground.
My First “Storm Cloud”
I learned the principle of how storm clouds discharge when I was just 8. My brother was studying for his school leaving exam. He was nervous and tense.
“Go away”, he growled in the direction of the door to his room whenever I tentatively turned the handle to enter. When I forced the issue, and ventured inside he growled without even looking up at me, and when I tried to approach him for the third time, he jumped out of his chair and started to beat me. All I wanted to do was give him my picture, a drawing I had done which showed him a happy teacher, and my message: I’M KEEPING MY FINGERS CROSSED FOR YOU, BUDDY!
I could not understand his reaction then, but now I know it is just the fate of all lightning conductors. We’re the way the “cloud” chooses to discharge all its energy, just for trying to help.
This phenomenon is another part of the modern era we are living in. With that in mind, today I will focus on one of the most complex areas of interpersonal relationships. It’s about being the most effective lightning conductor for someone, and helping their storm cloud discharge its tension without hurting themselves or others.
Let me introduce you: This is a Storm Cloud.
Someone you care about is under pressure, anxious, helpless. They behave like a hurt animal that needs help, one that bites anyone who tries to get close.
From what you see on the outside, you might want to condemn him, but just like hurt animals, people, too, may suffer injuries which don’t show on the surface, but are deeper and more painful than any obviously bleeding wound.
You cannot understand them, but you can guess from their behaviour that something is up. You see a person suffering because of some concern that is eating them from the inside, and you would like to help so much. You want to relieve them of the charge and tension. But how can you do this when the emotional discharge might overwhelm you? How can you approach storm clouds? What are the things you need to keep in mind when becoming a lightning conductor?
- To be it clear: Tension is not something people choose voluntarily.
Why are you treating me this way? This is a question I did not ask my brother. There was no point. Storm clouds do not know why they behave the way they do, either. They discharge emotions, and emotions listen to neither logic nor reason.
Love is no different. There is no point in asking WHY you love someone. Emotions need no reasons. They simply ARE.
Yes, there ARE all kinds of emotional crises, lethargies, periods of hopelessness and loneliness that everyone has to go through, and no-one can be spared them, so lightning conductors will always be in demand. Just as literal lightning conductors sit on buildings all around us, patiently waiting, so emotional ones need to be ready to. They do not do anything in an active sense, they simply ARE in place. Day after day. Just in case. And their mission is hardly enviable. A true Friend is always ready to earth a cloud of its lightning. This is one of the kindest and most useful things you can provide to a person in difficulty.
No-one chooses to feel lost by choice, and no-one wishes to get derailed off his or her path. No one wants to trip and fall, either one time or repeatedly while not having the slightest idea who they are and where they are going. The only thing they feel is: lack of faith, frustration, resignation. I am nothing.
As a proper lightning conductor, you need to be aware of this fact. Excessive charge is not just a bad mood, or something you can simply get over and feel better from with the snap of your fingers. It is hell to go through.
Don’t make their hell worse by asking them questions. Just be near and available, like a tall tree. The taller and more independent such a tree is, the more it attracts the Storm Cloud’s discharge.
In other words: if you are doing well and the other person is not so lucky, you need to count on becoming a lightning conductor. i.e., an object that relieves the other person of their charge. Not a fun job but a necessary one.
Please, continue to the 2nd page