Touch

I have been thinking about touch and how it is the most valuable of all the human senses which can be given or received. Why? Because it cannot be duplicated. Sights and sounds can be sent across the internet. Sights, sounds, smells and tastes can be sent through the mail. But touch can only be experienced face to face. An affectionate kiss, the warmth of a hand, the comfort of a loving hug – these cannot be duplicated. It is one of the most sacred things we will ever experience in our life and it is as precious of a commodity as time. Touch is a gift that we too often withhold and too often shun. I will look for it with more awareness and I will give it more freely.

Other thoughts on this subject…

We live in a world where touch has become more and more rare. We’re afraid of people, germs, dirt, etc. It’s a world we’ve created for ourselves. 

I was thinking, my grandfather and I have had hours and hours of talks (more in the last 10 years than before) but the amount of time we have touched is very limited…maybe 10 minutes worth of touching in the last 10 years if I total up all the hugs that occur when we meet up and all the moments when we get close for a photo. That's absurd! It should not be like this! Even if it’s 30 minutes or if it’s one hour, one hour of touching across 10 years of time?? What lie did we buy into on that one?!?

What if when we are together with our families we held hands more? What if we kissed each other on the cheek more often and not just out of habit but actually with feeling and meaning? What if we held each other in a hug for 1 minute solid instead of the usual quick 3 seconds? I think the reason we don’t is because of pride – fear (what they will think of us) and judgment (what we think of them).

Me and my sister Angela

Today a friend told me “A few weeks ago I was at a friend’s house and we were working out. We were both sweaty and her daughter woke up and came in a saw me and ran up and gave me a huge hug. She did not even pay any attention to the sweat, she did what she felt in that moment. When and why do we lose that!?” We have become so afraid of what people think, it controls our actions. And we have all these cultural codes. All of this makes life more and more sterile and as a result we feel less and less alive, we slowly die inside, our once warm beating hearts become like dry cold stones. 

Me and my brother Costa

The good news is that we have the power to change things in our life and if we are breathing then we have the gift of touch. I plan to use that gift more often than ever before.

Please share your thoughts here in my blog, I always enjoy reading them! Also, feel free to copy, forward or quote anything I have written.

Niko

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30 Comments. Leave new

I totally agree! The power of hugging is beyond description but only can be felt through real touch! sometimes even just friendly hugging can be really comforting!

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A touche ore just a stroke of a hand on your face can do magic……
Just by knowing that the other is near you, and give you hugs and kisses al day long………
and i als find that a hug can give you comfort……….

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You are so right. Nothing can replace a hug, a touch,a tender caress. However, what I read in your link can be taken as a gesture of fondness. Kalimera, my special friend

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I totaly agree with you. There is things I have always realized for years and it was making me kinda angry and it is that people choose certain people to touch or give a hug. I was new in a school, stayed there only 2 years, 11 th and 12th grade. I was watching a boy putting his hand on a girl s shoulder even they both had boyfriend and girlfriend outside school. I believe they were interested in self-confident people. I never understand how some people only pick self-confident people. another boy was sitting close to another girl and spending a lot of time talking. everyone already had boyfriends and girlfriends. I mean, I see them having a lot of touch, hugs, kisses on cheeks while there are other people who need touches. I mean I know there are people who are sitting alone in lectures in college or listening to music in school break and wishing someone to hug him or her. Last year, a boy was smiling to me and opened the door first to let me enter first. I was very surprised. Then I had to talk to him before the summer holiday begins. After we met 3 times, the boy kissed on my cheeks like how girls do to girls. I must admit, it affected me very positively. I was very happy and I felt that he touched my heart! I felt I’m alive. The boy is still my closest friend!
One day, I came from college and was on the way to home but suddenly I saw a tall young boy. I had to look at his bag because it was very inspiring. It was written “the anger changes me”. It reminded me of my past school. I know school can be pretty harsh and painful. But life after school gets soo much better…really a lot of better. I wished I could hug the boy and tell him that life after school is more precious and beautiful but I didnt have a courage to hug a stranger or to talk to him. I was afraid he may think I am a weirdo…lol. All I know, it s worth to befriend someone sitting alone in lectures and keep being close to him or her, then keep hugging. I do sometimes want to hug my closest friend but as niko said that we are afraid. I mean, I am afraid what my closest friend would think. We have to get rid of this dramatic feelings and just do it! I am very glad of your journal, niko!

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ı love you NİKO ı like you NİKO 🙂

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Niko! Finally someone that has the courage to talk about this beautiful expression of love towards others really! Display of LOVE people I feel do fear it because of what others might think of them. I have to share this experience with you, it happened to me way back in 1977..yes way back,lol. I just came back from Italy I lived there for fours yrs of my life. If your familiar with the Italian culture we are touchy feeling kind of people really we love to hug and use our hands to express our thoughts to others. I destinctly remember when ingaging into conversation I would touch that persons arm and look them in the eyes. I would stay so close to them I wanted their attention and that close connection to them it felt a natural way for me, now mind you I was only 15yrs at the time. One particular day this friend of mine told me, you know you shouldn’t do that your invading peoples space and its just weird. Well my heart sunk then. That’s not how I saw it. So for me I found other ways to try to connect with others without really touching them. I smiled everyday. Today I find some people are desperate for that touch and human contact and warmth that can give them that innersmile that people are missing from their heart and I love to give it with all my heart because guess what? IT’S FREE!!!

Hugs and Smile for you today Niko!!!!
Ciao
Maria

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Yes, I’ve thingking about that all my life. Touching needs depend on eachone’s personality, but I believe that all os us can feel and think much better upon a loving touch. I stress that I refer to friendly/loving touches, as they can be of a different kind. Besides, still considering the first ones, I’ve already received just social or even hypocrite effusive hugs/kisses.
But I do not wish to speak about these ones. I thank God to also be honoured with my parents’ touches, my husbands’, my baby’s ones. Nothing can be compared with the touch of our fragile loving baby. We are closer and closer with our companions if there are tender touches. We are rendered to our dog’s touches when we come back home. Your photo with Magic is a prove of that. What were you feeling by that time?
So, this power of touch also touches us emotionally in mysterious ways, yet deep.
A deep warm friendly touch to you, Niko!

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Niko,

I think it’s time for you to fall in love with the special lady so you will be experiencing touch as opposed to lying in bed think about it.

Just as a plant needs water in order to blossom touch is essential for humans to grow. Too often we underestimate the power of touch, a smile, a kind word, a listening ear, an honest compliment, or the smallest act of caring, all of which have the potential to turn a life around.

When I volunteered at an orphanage in Kenya this year what struck me was how shy the children were, they were wary of touch, because they had never experienced a hug, a cuddle.

Many of them had lost their parents when they were babies and the overworked house mother did not have the time for hugs which were in very short supply.

They loved the books toys, clothes and treats which I had brought, but they needed most of was a hug, a listening ear.

I found that after a few days the children lost that rigidness, the look of a frightened fawn in their eyes as they slowly learnt to trust, to share their stories, draw little pictures, write me notes of affection.

I would urge anyone to take the time in their lives to go help out at an orphanage in a third world country, there are so many of them filled with children lacking in love and in desperate need of a warm reassuring hug which is worth more than any donation sent by post. A donation cannot hug them or make them feel secure.

To quote Mother Teresa:

“Let us touch the dying, the poor, the unwanted according to the graces we have received, and let us not be ashamed or slow to do the humble work”

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i yhinkn yuawhefhbv ncjhdigfrhgvr

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I’d give you a hug and kiss everyday Niko—-if I was there. I’ve been through so much hell in my life to the point Heaven seemed out of reach in my heart—but I can’t stop loving people. Loving people is my curse no matter how much they hurt me because I’m addicted to love.
I give my 12 year old sister hugs and kisses all the time and she bakes me cookies or brownies. My mom gave me her bedroom to sleep in when I moved back home and she sleeps downstairs, which I don’t agree with- but I’m her first born and she does this out of love and even though she doesn’t touch me by hand or kiss—she makes sure to touch my heart as much as possible.
I also give out many hugs and smiles at Wal-Mart at store 1496 in Waterloo,Iowa so if you ever visit this city come join me and my crew on 3rd shift from 10pm to 7am.
Thanks Niko. Thanks for touching me with music and words—-you are right on time for many people and God knows he did one of the best things ever by creating you in the perfect year on the perfect day for lonley people such as I to adore you.
I love you beautiful sugary sweet Niko——-I love you for life always my dear sweet brother man!

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So true, so true. I oculdn’t have said it better myself.

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What would a greeting without a union of hands?

What would a farewell without a hug?

What would the love without kisses?

How would you feel a child without a mother’s caress?

How do you think you feel niko without a kiss, a caress and even a hug?

Thank God I believe that neither you nor I are missing these kisses of love, that in a farewell embrace and caress of a mother and a child.

Pd: IF YOU EVER NEED A KISS, a caress and a hug, remember me and feel that I HAVE GIVEN YOU. UN BESO.

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Niko,

Just as a plant needs water in order to blossom touch is essential for humans to grow. Too often we underestimate the power of touch, a smile, a kind word, a listening ear, an honest compliment, or the smallest act of caring, all of which have the potential to turn a life around.

When I volunteered at an orphanage in Kenya this year what struck me was how shy the children were, they were wary of touch, because they had never experienced a hug, a cuddle.

Many of them had lost their parents when they were babies and the overworked house mother did not have the time for hugs which were in very short supply.

They loved the books toys, clothes and treats which I had brought, but they needed most of was a hug, a listening ear.

I found that after a few days the children lost that rigidness, the look of a frightened fawn in their eyes as they slowly learnt to trust, to share their stories, draw little pictures, write me notes of affection.

I would urge anyone to take the time in their lives to go help out at an orphanage in a third world country, there are so many of them filled with children lacking in love and in desperate need of a warm reassuring hug which is worth more than any donation sent by post. A donation cannot hug them or make them feel secure.

To quote Mother Teresa:

“Let us touch the dying, the poor, the unwanted according to the graces we have received, and let us not be ashamed or slow to do the humble work”

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Niko I do believe in that touching face to face that specail kiss, hug or warm embrace is a treasure and only be truly expressed face to face and can’t be duplicated in a email. It is a nice thing though when someone or a friend sends hugs through a email it just shows they care very much and are thinking of you and that can be very special!

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Thank you Niko for the sharing!
What i decode “touch” is more than the action between people.I agree with you.Touch is unable to be duplicated!
But the definition of touhc could be larger.The sunshine touch our skin.The rain drops kiss our hair.The delicious food touch our teeth and tongue.The music hug our ears.The wonderful sight touch our eyes.The instant feeling of touch and what we receive or express is unique and unable to be duplicated.Since sound,sight or other things can be printed or spreaded in other forms, but the feeling or the meaning in expression differs dependently individually each time.
That’s what I’ve thought.^^

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I think the world needs more love and huges. Thanks Niko. Kss.

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Love the pic of you and your grandfather, he is very handsome.
And you, you cutie, in your dashing hat, such a wonderful smile, how could anyone tell you no!
Good pic of you and your pretty sister, she must be strong.
You brother, Costa, you need to post an up-to-date pic of him. Is he as cute as you??
I agree with you about the “Hugs” we all really should do this until it become a habit not to break!
Thank you for all you do.
Hugs and kisses!!

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niko
you are so correct. i have been a nurse for years and TOUCH is the best way to communicate what you really want to say ( which, as a nurse is “i care”) without touch babies die, this is a proven fact that they “fail to thrive” you are so insightful to see this and i am glad you bring it to the attention of others. touching can never be underated.

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I agree whole-heartedly. Some people don’t really like to be touched, but I wouldn’t be able to live without it.

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Love your blog so much and you’re so right! I have to say that I don’t hug much people I love. I should change that. HUGE HUGS from France.

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This is so true!
It has been scientifically proven that touch can produce millions of feelings it’s like candies for your soul..just do it!

Free Hugs for everyone ;p

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hugging friends, familly, our beloved ones is really important. but what if you where away from the people you know best or what if you had a rellationship with somebody you knew for 2 weeks or so and show him/her all of your affection and after nine months of this relationship you end up being hurt? how can you overcome this when all you see arround is people what most of the time are trying to take advandage of you? what if you spend most of your time on alone in front of a pc screen communicating with people you might never know in person trying to find comfort because the friends you have can’t always be there and aren’t enough to fill the gap? what if all the hugs you give, all the affection you show are never enough for some people to stay with you? so how can you still be the same after being torn apart?

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Hehehe. So true.

I’m glad I still bounce up to my friends and hug them it’s something I’ve always done.

Some of them are like nooo don’t hug meh I has a cooold.

All I say is soo I love you plus it’s not like I care if I catch it.

Keep up the insights cuz someone in this godforsaken fish bowl needs to say what they think.

;]

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Mabe the first thing we must do is to trust, then we need courage.

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EMILIA FIGUEIREDO
October 12, 2009 8:22 am

HELLO NIKO ÉS MESMO A BOY ROMANTIC and affectionate COURSE BETWEEN HUMAN TOUCH THAT LOVE AND WONDERFUL FRIENDS AND ALSO SAY I LOVE YOU! KISS MILA

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I agree with you Niko.
Touch is needed to live, a little baby that is not touched enough will have problems later in live.
When you are sad and someone is putting a hand on your arm it means the world.
A touch is real love, it reaches the heart……

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Hi Nico. I love your photos so familiar and simple, full of tenderness. Thanks for sharing with friends. A warm hug and happy weekend.
Kisses.

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I have been considering this a lot lately. Why are people afraid of touching… I mean I looove good hugs, everyone does when they do it, so why!? To see each individuals struggle just take a look at how they were raised. Sometimes it is hard to break free of the thinking you started when you were very young.
Although mostly I have no problems touching people there are some relationships that I am afraid of complicating and of not making my intentions clear enough. This is because when we are young if a girl likes a boy she shows her affections by touching him, hugging him… In this male/female relationship it seems to stem from being taught that it is not ok to touch others unless they want you to touch them. And usually, if a girl wants you to touch her she is attracted to you. With this we separate ourselves at a young age, start to deny our true nature, and isolate our human need for touch. We instead search for a partner to experience this need and turn the meaning of touching into more than just pure love for one another and an innocent need to be touched and to touch. Since we do this isolation many people find themselves moving from one relationship to the next and even cheating on their partner in order to stir their dying nature. Ah! then of course you face the raising of the eyebrows if you hug a married person of the opposite sex. If they are in a partnership you still are likely to be facing jealousy issues and silent questioning. With isolation comes possessiveness. Yes, it is a sterile world we have created. Even in same sex relationships it is often times hard to just step out there and hug away! We lack confidence and assume too often that the other person doesn’t need to be touched like you do. BUT WE NEED EACH OTHER! We have to learn to push past our current thinking and make others see that it is ok! Inside we scream, “I need your attention please and thank you!” My mother told me that every person needs at least 10 (can’t remember the exact) meaningful
touches daily! Something she read somewhere that really stuck with me. It
breaks my heart to know there are so many people that have minimal loving
contact and then those that have NONE. It hurts me to understand this and
know how easy it would be to fix the devastation. That is why I give my
biggest smile and try my best to show true acceptance to as many people as I
can throughout my days. I am not picky with who I care about, if they cross
paths with me I try to show them that.
Thank you for sharing Niko you got me to thinking. I needed that.

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@ Anonymous
Thank you for sharing this. It moved me. Thank you for being there for those children.. priceless and truly beautiful… Much Love.

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what a beautiful text..
thank you for sharing your thoughts with us
can i posted it in my facebook?
have an amazing weekend
best whishes
erica

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