Saturday, January 24, 2015

Finding Our Original Face

We must try to discover the real person we are.  From time to time something authentic shows through in moments when we are carried away by such joy that we forget who might be looking at us, when we are unself-conscious in moments of extreme pain, or when we have a deep sense of sadness or wonder.  At these moments we see something of the true person that we are.  But often after we have seen ourselves we turn away because we do not want to confront this person face to face.  Nevertheless this is the only real person there is in us.
-Orthodox Bishop Anthony Bloom
Who are all of us…really?  We show up in different parts of our lives in a variety of costumes acting out the role we play for that scene.  All of us go through life wearing a variety of masks usually because we fear rejection from our fellow actors.  I shared once that every time two people meet there are six people in the room.  For each person there is the person they think they are, the person they really are, and the person the other person thinks they are.  When the masks and the costumes are stripped away, who is the real person?  We can spend much of our lives in the company of the same people and the mystery of who we are is never truly revealed.  I have long believed that the person we are when we are alone is a good indicator of who we really are.  When there are no roles to play, no games to play, and no expectations on how we should act, we are usually most comfortable being our true selves.  The whole goal of life and our individual spiritual journeys is to find our true selves.  Our true self is who we are in God.  The Buddhists call this “finding the face you had before your parents were born”.  The true self is the real self, the unmasked self, the pure essence of who we truly are.  It is our original nature and the part of us that many believe is eternal.  

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