What is life like without a mask?

3 December 2013 0 Comment(s)


Why are we so petrified to show the world our real face? Are we afraid of what will be seen? Do we deep down think the ‘real’ us doesn’t deserve to be?

The more I hear myself and others, the more I notice how keen we are to do ‘the right thing’. We either have a point of reference or are looking for an authority that shows us ‘the way’ and tell us what to do and how to be. We crave the day when we get it right, although we have absolutely no idea what ‘right’ is. All we know, is we want to be good and play all of our roles well. Our heart’s desire is be ‘a good friend’, ‘a good parent’, ‘a good spouse’, ‘a good sister/brother’ etc… So, we set ourselves an ideal for each role that we play. We have an idea or think we do of what, let’s say, ‘a good friend’ is and then we manipulate ourselves to fit that role – in other words we wear the mask of a good friend. We do this in every role we play and so, we’re always acting in our own life, doing what we think we’re supposed to do.

It is however possible, to live our life rather than act it out.

Why take these role models and try to play them? Will we ever be good enough while there is this ideal to adhere to? For how long do we need to mould ourselves into these external models? Do we get the desired result when we do? Do we not at times feel trapped behind them? Do we not risk to find ourselves in a life that is not a true reflection of ourselves? What is the problem with being ourself just as we are and responding to all the situations that arise organically – right from the core of our own being?

You see, from where I look, we’ve got it all backwards! In order to create harmonious relationships we act according to a borrowed model at the cost of losing our inner harmony. As if somewhere inside we believe there can be harmony with whoever is out there without having it inside. Without being real ourself, we search for real connections and wonder why they’re so hard to come by! Playing all these roles, wearing all these masks, we lose ourselves and our life becomes a struggle of constant self monitoring, censoring and manipulation. As we deny ourselves the right to be who we are, we become blind to the people around us and see them also as merely roles. So, instead of having ‘being to being’ connections we end up with ‘role to role’ ones. We then wonder how on earth, despite all our endeavours we find ourselves in a real mess. Not that there is anything wrong with mess! It’s just an indication that some clearance is required. Perhaps that clearance is of all the role models, all the masks that we’ve gathered in our lifetime. Maybe they’re taking up too much space not leaving us much room to manoeuvre. Perhaps this clearance will allow us to find out what it is we truly want and for the first time, get a glimpse of who we truly are.

I think that all we’re looking for out there, must start here -with us- in order to create the ripple effect, not the other way round. Let’s find out what will happen when we turn up as ourself in situations and relationships. Maybe we’ll find that as we live our life instead of acting it, our next steps become clear, even when the next step is to do nothing and wait. Maybe we’ll find that we do indeed hold the answers to all of our predicaments, just as long as we don’t hide from ourselves and from the world.

In Gangaji’s words: “To allow yourself to be as you are is the end of the spiritual search, the end of the path. No ledges, no concepts, no holds, just free falling. Who you are is all that is needed, and all that is here. Are you ready to trust that?”

Nov 2013



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