Knowing One Another

I've felt challenged this week while reading the works of Rollo May, a Christian minister–turned psychologist. Specifically what resonated with me was when he speaks about the classical distinction between knowing and knowing about another existing person.

Reading the Bible, I've noticed the illustration of the Greek and Hebrew translation of "to know" another, such as "Abraham knew his wife and she conceived..." I'm not getting at the notion of wanting to get "to know" you, wink-wink, but to take a look at the etymological relation between knowing and loving

May explains it this way:

Knowing another human being, like loving him, involves a kind of union, a dialectical participation with the other...The encounter with the being of another person has the power to shake one profoundly and may potentially be very anxiety-arousing. It may also be joy-creating. In either case, it has the power to grasp and move one deeply.
— Rollo May, The Discovery of Being

I reflected back on this concept of encountering and the power of knowing another person at, say, Lighthouse. In the context of fellowship, am I in union, open to be changed by the encounter with someone? Am I willing to just know about my fellow believer or am I willing to risk myself and take the chance to be enriched by this new encounter, this new relationship?