The Human Faraday Cage

In 1836 Michael Faraday realised that if you build a cage out of certain materials, it would stop most electrical fields from entering the cage. The electrical fields that hit the cage are dispersed and leave the space inside unaffected.

In life, we are not just bombarded by the man-made electrical fields, we are also bombarded by how people act and what they say. We can walk into a room and know there is tension between the people in the room. This is us being able to feel as much, if not more, than we can see and hear.

In fact, people are far more sensitive than we give them credit for. Said another way, we are far more sensitive to the world than we allow ourselves to admit… So how do we deal with that level of sensitivity? Most build a human Faraday cage.

The human Faraday cage is a shield that we build, not from wire, but through beliefs about ourselves and the world, like the hurts from our childhood that we use to justify the effort that goes into maintaining the cage intact and seemingly impenetrable.

These are the foundations of the cage.

However, for many they are not enough – the world still gets in. This means that most of us add layers of reinforcing elements; like eating foods that numb our senses, using stimulants that make us race faster than the tension we may be feeling, or exercising in a way that makes the body harder and less sensitive to its surroundings.

The foundations and reinforcements make the perfect pairing.

The foundations make us convinced this is the only way to live and the reinforcements allow us to change the thickness of the shield so we can feel more (let our guard down) or less (protect ourselves) in different situations.

Voila! We now have the perfect way to get through life and be less affected by the world around us… with three key problems.

(1) The first problem with life in the cage is that this becomes our reality

We become so familiar with its wall that, when we reduce the thickness of the shield, it gives us a sense that we have connected deeply with someone. However, we are still living in the cage – it is thinner, but it is still there.

(2) The second is that we can never stop feeling, we can only become less aware of what we are feeling

Lay a piece of cloth over your arm and then ask someone to touch your arm. You can still feel something but your sensitivity to the touch is reduced. Add more layers of cloth and eventually you will say you can’t feel anything AND you will be right, except for the fact that something is still happening, you are just unaware that it is happening. This is like saying someone was not raped because they were unconscious. Just because we are not aware something is going on, it doesn’t mean we don’t feel it on some deeper level.

This is the lie we live from inside the cage; the fact that on a very deep level, we still feel it all, but we accept a lack of awareness as being a lack of issues.

In fact, at times we defend our own lack of awareness. Not because we are lying to ourselves, but because the layers of the cage are so thick it comes as a shock that someone else might be feeling something different to us.

(3) What we block from the world, we block from within ourselves first

When the foundations and reinforcements block our senses, it becomes harder to determine if what we are feeling is coming from the outside or the inside. Yet if we don’t know the difference between what is coming from around or from within, how can we get a true sense of ourselves?

Life without a cage is more sensitive but those with cages miss the point that it is our sensitivity that gives us our strength. Life without the cage starts with being honest about the layers we have constructed so that we can start unlocking the foundations.

With each layer removed more of life is felt and more of what is inside comes out, revealing an essence that is sensitive yet powerful, sacred yet everyday, magical yet practical and, most of all, it is an essence that is equal to all others.

In appreciation of Serge Benhayon, the man who knows life without a cage is both a choice and a birthright of every person.

By Joel Levin, Western Australia

Further Reading:
Living from the Inside Out
But are they Really ‘Skeptics’?
The Man is Not A Machine – Changing The Building Industry One Brick At A Time

989 thoughts on “The Human Faraday Cage

  1. As layer upon layer of the protection, hurts, ideals, and beliefs that have become our cage are slowly removed, a sense of freedom begins to be felt and with that, an understanding that we have a choice to heal and to learn to love again who we truly are.

  2. And what I feel is that we also feel others’ cage and the falseness that is being communicated and we don’t like that, and this sometimes then becomes a justification for us reinforcing our own cage.

  3. It can feel very raw or fragile at first when we let go of our layers of protection but I noticed always after a day of opening up more I feel so much more vital, open and loving because of it.

  4. ‘we can never stop feeling, we can only become less aware of what we are feeling’ WE tend to forget this and/or deny our feelings which can get us into oodles of trouble . How wonderful to know that we are always feeling but have gotten ourselves into believing we can’t. By uncovering one by one those impediments we have allowed to get in the way and giving ourselves permission to feel again we become more aware and potentially more honest.

  5. We are deeply polluted by images, in particular of survival. We all know ways to defend ourselves against life and others by means of hardening (shielding). We also know how to shield the shield. The shield helps us surviving (coping). Yet, surviving is not a sign of strength. It is simply coping. Learning to stop balls from entering the goalkeeper is just that. Strength is to look at another right into their eyes one with an open heart, grab him/her by the hand and walk together, gracefully.

  6. So many gems here, but the one jumping out tonight is that in our protection we can’t tell what is coming from without and what is coming from within, so yes we’ve protected ourselves from the world, but we stop being aware of how we truly feel too, we live a lesser version of ourselves.

  7. When we live with the cage, we get pummeled by everything around us yet we can not feel because of the layers where it is coming from, how we are getting affected and what is going on- we end up then acting out behaviours that come from being affected and we don’t see what is at play.

  8. I much prefer to live a life that is ‘cage-less’ than a life that is caged around man made conceptions.

    And Joel ‘life without a cage is both a choice and a birthright of every person’ is spot on, it is our birthright.

  9. I love this blog, we cannot deny what we feel but we are that conditioned to listen to our minds, that we over ride what our body’s feel – a sad state of affairs around the world.

    I prefer to dismantle my cage and really be who I truly am then walk around with this heavy cage that doesn’t belong to me and isn’t me.

  10. “it is our sensitivity that gives us our strength.” The bars of our cage are no barrier to the light that shines out from our inner-heart.

  11. I have lived my life in a box much like the cage you describe Joel, my box was ideals of good, right and wrong, I had no sense of my self nor did I want one for this would get in the was of my doing good. It is a slow process in learning to lovingly claim myself and honour what I feel, thanks to Serge and what he presents my box is gradually falling apart. “With each layer removed more of life is felt and more of what is inside comes out, revealing an essence that is sensitive yet powerful, sacred yet everyday, magical yet practical and, most of all, it is an essence that is equal to all others.” gorgeous words thank you.

  12. ” the man who knows life without a cage is both a choice and a birthright of every person. ”
    This is very true and a simple example of free will , thank you for sharing Joel.

  13. Joel, the analogy of someone touching us through increasing layers of clothing until we can’t feel it anymore and yet it is still happening is so powerful. It really brings home the fact that even though we don’t feel things (not because we can’t but because we choose to dull our awareness) they are happening any way and affecting us whether we feel them or not.

  14. Many families ‘don’t do feelings’ Parents don’t speak to each other or their children about their lives, consequently feelings are left unspoken and unexplored. I’m constantly surprised by the number of children bullied at school, abused at home, or feel insecure but keep all these feelings and experiences to themselves, rather than share with another. We can do much more as families, teachers, youth workers to build communities that enable children to speak openly about what is going on in their outer and inner worlds Silence can be a deadly choice, confirmed by the startling rise in young male suicides.

  15. ‘Life without the cage starts with being honest about the layers we have constructed so that we can start unlocking the foundations’. When we deny our sensitivity and feelings with justification (protection), we lose ourselves and cannot truly connect with self and others.

  16. When I left a company after nine years and ‘ready ‘to go’, I drew an image of a caged bird flying out of an open door. It symbolised my perception that leaving the job equated to freedom. But from what?. When I left, the cage came with me along with all my ideals and beliefs about life, nothing had changed in essence. It took years to become aware of inner and self-imposed constraints and lovingly dismantle them. Only then could I taste true freedom.

  17. A person incarcerated in jail knows they’re in a physical prison, it is clear and tangible. We on the outside can often look at prisoners with judgement and arrogance unaware of our own caged existence.

  18. You have a beautiful way of expressing Joel. When I have found it difficult to drop my protection, what I discovered is to be honest about where I’m at, and to simply surrender to my sensitivity and tenderness.

  19. It is a paradox that the more we protect ourselves from outside influences, we simultaneously become more and more numb and therefore are more and more at the mercy of what is outside of us.

  20. One of the greatest myths is that we can protect ourselves from the outside world, lock ourselves away and harden our bodies. I was with someone yesterday who was sobbing for the time I was there and they kept saying “I told myself I was going to be strong”. It doesn’t work. We keep feeling everything no matter what walls we construct.

  21. Could it be that this cage also reduces our level of vitality and overal joy and zest for life to most lack? It is no wonder exhaustion and depression among many other ill conditions are on the rise. After all it is lonely behind the bars of the self created cage that takes effort to keep up.

  22. We hurt ourselves the most by blocking to feel. As this way we also block to feel the love which is outthere and equally so within.

  23. Yes building a shield for ourselves is a bit of a one size fits all. As in, we shut down our awareness of the things we don’t like about life e.g. anger from others however also and equally shut down all the things we do like about love e.g. expressing joy, receiving love etc.

  24. What an amazing blog. To consider that what we block from outside we block in ourselves first is huge … it blows away any idea that protection works, it comes with a big price tag … we miss out on the world and on ourselves so we then live a reduced version of us in a reduced world. So life is about unlocking our cages and allowing the light in us to be seen and felt in the world.

  25. Today I got to feel how life would be without a cage, protection, a shield…. To surrender into the unconditional love within and be open to all without holding back for fear of being hurt. This doesn’t mean we won’t be hurt but why live life as a mere shadow of our true glory just because we might feel hurt. In being open to Love we feel our sensitivity and vulnerability which brings with it our power.

  26. I am always inspired by your parables Joel and the reflection they offer us. Living in the cage takes a lot of effort and is very exhausting, learning to let go of these protective layers we have built up is life changing and we get to feel and embrace life in a whole new and very true way.

  27. The truth is that when we enclose ourselves in protection so that we ‘seemingly’ feel less or safe, we are not living who we really are as we are masked by layers that avoid or dull our awareness, which we come to falsely believe is what identifies who we are. our relationship then a based on this false superficiality, lacking really connection. I agree that honesty is key in order for us to realise that our connection to who we are in essence and expressing what we feel is where true strength, power, freedom and real connection is experienced.

  28. We create our own reality and we make sure that this is what stands out for us. The point is that what we create sits always on top of what is there anyway and the key is how we relate to it. Do we try to block it? Do we feel it and override it? Do we allow ourselves to feel it? When we have to take antibiotics, it kills everything good or bad. When we try to block or override, we are saying no to bad and good and in this case living under the illusion of protection which in truth is just a confirmation of not really wishing to feel anything that disturb how we want reality to be for us (a very controlling way of movement).

  29. That lessening and thickening mechanics of the cage wall is so deceiving. It makes us go after the ‘better’ rather than the ‘true’.

    1. So true Fumiyo – well said. Settling for a better life does not allow us to explore the immeasurable potential of living a true life, one that represents who we really are in essence.

  30. The explanation of how layers of protection ie: the pieces of fabric, reduce our sensitivty is so wonderfully simple and clear. This visual makes perfect sense as to how we numb ourselves.

  31. The more I deconstruct my own cage the more sensitive I am to the inner turmoil that occurs when standing on a foundation of hurt or actively reinforcing the walls around me. The relief of numbness doesn’t compare to the settlement of being out of the cage.

  32. It is incredible the amount of effort that we put into maintaining our personal cage and great to understand that we are our own jailors and we have the key to unlock the cage at any time.

  33. Cage-less, sounds like a good movie title actually. Imagine an action movie hero that was special and brave because he was willing to be vulnerable? Now that would be something for the boys to look up to but unfortunately its about supply and demand and I don’t think we are asking for those kind of movies yet. In saying that though, the ground swell has to start somewhere and these style of blogs to me are making a huge impact. They speak to all ages and they say, philosophy can be fun, they say evolving is not weird, its a science and its fascinating. Each time I read your blogs I am reminded of the fact that you are one of my biggest role models, with great love and appreciation for you, thank you.

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