Intersections by Navina Anand

Venn diagrams used to be one of my favourite concepts through school. It was possibly the only kind of math problem that came easy to me. Even later when we had to do logical reasoning problems for the aptitude tests that we take throughout our annoying student life, Venn diagrams were super useful to bring clarity of thought

Our entire life feels like a web of Venn diagrams. Our passions are the intersection of our abilities and interests. It is said that “The state of flow is achieved at the perfect intersection between your ability and the level of challenge”. Too dumb and you lose interest, too challenging and you give up before you even started. It’s got to be that sweet spot where you can lose yourself in the activity and be “in flow”. When the yoga class is really good at that intersection between my body’s  flexibility and my ability to channelize my mind to focus on my asana, I am surprised when my teacher announces that it is time for pranayama which signals that its almost the end of the session.

Friendship is the intersection of wavelength and personality. My BFF of 35 years is still today, someone whom I can call up without preamble and start talking. It has made no difference that we live in different continents and have survived multiple time zones through these years. As they say, “they just get you”. We know we are in a safe zone when we are with those friends.  Two peas in a pod who cannot judge the other pea.

Romance between two people is the intersection of wavelength and sexual attraction. Chemistry some of us call it. Can they finish your sentences? Are they able to read your mind even before the words walked out of your lips?  Do they have the ability to wear pink shades and see only the good in you and conveniently ignore the mountain of crap underneath it? Does everything about you bring a smile to their face and a light to their heart? Of course, as we grow older… we tend to lose the romance in a lot of things. Not just in people. I guess losing the wonder in things, people, activities is a loss of romance.

Marriage is the intersection of affection, respect and compromise. You remove any one of these elements and it just starts being this jaded thing that you drag along for the sake of not having a more viable alternative. You keep up appearances for society, for the children or because of the fear that you don’t want to die alone. And yes, each of these elements is a conscious deposit you need to make into your account every single day.

Venn diagrams were introduced by John Venn in 1880 as “On the Diagrammatic and Mechanical Representation of Propositions and Reasonings”. Propositions and Reasonings…. what a fascinating phrase. Have you ever pondered how the Venn diagrams in your life are working or not working for you?

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