Monday, April 1, 2013

Being authentic reprise

It's amazing but this just keeps happening. Lately in the course of my internal dialogue, I ask some questions and then I see something or hear something that explores or answers those same questions. Tonight I stumbled upon the video below that does just that. It appears as though the world is the mirror of my inner reality, reflecting my beliefs, thoughts, fears and the emotions I am feeling.   Many, many times, probably thousands of times, my questions have been answered in some similar way. The answers could come to me through a song on the radio, a programme on TV, a movie, a book, a person talking to me or someone else, or more often these days, from the internet. Sometimes, it just comes to me when I am sitting quietly, a flash of inspiration, something I didn't even know I knew. But is such an awareness itself proof of fundamental truth about the nature of reality or is it yet another belief reflected back to me? The outside world providing me with 'proof' that my beliefs are true. Like the fractal, the pattern within the pattern repeated, or the mirror reflecting the mirror and so on ad infinitum. Perhaps it has always been this way but these days I am sure it's happening much more frequently. Serendipity or happy accidents? But no, not that because personally I don't believe in accidents or coincidences.

About year ago, I decided to be authentic and to speak my truth as fearlessly as I could but it's hard. It's hard because being yourself takes courage to tell people what you really think and believe especially when your thoughts and beliefs are definitely not mainstream. Fortunately for me and people like me, more of us seem to be coming out the closet which is making it easier. But lately I have asked myself what is really me and what is ego, vanity or 'my story'?  By 'my story' I mean it's the story I tell myself. My victim story. My 'they-don't-understand-me' story because I'm different, weird or - flipping the coin and changing the tone from disparaging to conceited - "special".  I have just realised that all of them are stories. They're not really me. They are excuses that I tell myself to maintain the illusion of separation. I am unique, yes, but so is everyone else and should that be a reason to isolate myself from other people because I fear they will find me strange and so reject me?

During the first part of the video, Jiddu Krishnamurti, David Bohm and David Shainburg are talking about people's need to identify with a group in order not to feel alone or isolated. In order not to feel insecure. But that by doing so they compromise who they are by adapting to and adopting the consensus values and beliefs of the group, subverting their own in order to feel validated and accepted by society and therefore not alone. Essentially, as I see it, allowing the group to define them because they are either too afraid or unaware that they have it within them to define themselves. They argue that, in fact, being within the group in this way a person can still feel alone. They are talking about the idea that being alone is liberating but that the need to be with the group in order to survive is compelling and that banishment from the group would be the greatest punishment. In my case I am coming from the opposite side of this argument because I am feeling the need to reach out to people more and to release myself from self-imposed isolation. But this must happen without compromising who I am and any loss of my autonomy, and without asking anyone to compromise who they are either. An impossible feat? We'll see.