Tag Archives: Shakespeare

Living The Questions

Vacillate – word of the Day

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Straight ahead or turn left? (Frost’s poem comes to mind again Robert Frost – The Road Not Taken ). In the end it may not, but then again it might be a good choice! If only I could decide. One of the many tracks to walk or ride in Borannup Forest.

“Love says ‘I am everything.’ Wisdom says ‘I am nothing.’ Between the two, my life flows.”    Nisargadatta Maharaj.

Living The Questions

As I sat and inhaled the morning’s brew,
I mused that not all was slings and arrows,
nor was there a troubled sea to ponder,
just a vague sense that the horizon was unclear
and that life really is a series of questions
rather than a series of decisions,
for decisions only lead to more questions,
and the cycle endlessly repeats.
I am more resolved to this now
than my younger self,
to sit with the tension between two points,
to savour, to weigh, to wait, to play.
The joy is in the anticipation,
s lovers would agree,
not always in the resolution.
As I sit sipping my morning brew
I recognise I’ve come to enjoy the pleasures
of perhaps, of maybe, or let’s wait and see,
to see all sides,
and to play all characters,
till my circle has enlarged,
and there is no singularity,
no monochrome,
in fact, no circle at all,
simply the experience of
the beauty and the vagaries of life,
and to live the questions.

©Paul Vincent Cannon

Paul,

pvcann.com

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Filed under bush walking, Country, Forest, life, nature, poetry, quote

Elaborate Masks

via Daily Prompt: Elaborate

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An elaborate Renaissance Ball Mask. The masks were elaborate, but so was the ruse, an attempt to create mystery and tension, the possiblility of romance or illicit liasion. The masquerade was a feature of carnival season of 15th century Europe. In time masks became works of art. They were made of diferent materials, and bejeweled, like the one in the photo.

The masks we put on every day are not bejeweled, but they are clever, intricate, and very elaborate. If you want to read an early understanding the human mask, then Shakespeare is the one to read, and in particular, the ‘Taming of the Shrew.’ Psychologically, masks are a form of protection, we tend to mask anger, grief, anxiety, fear, a sense of failure, feeling like a fraud, needing to be the hero, the great intellect, and so on.

I have worked with people who use humour to mask what they perceive in themselves as a lack of sophistication. Others have thrown around biting sarcasm in order to keep others at bay. Some it is fear of success, so they play the incompetent. I have had the experience of never really knowing someone, at a funeral once I heard so much about someone I thought I knew, only to discover they had protected so much of their lives from public scrutiny, a compartmentalising. On another ocassion, when I was going through a difficult time, some said “I thought you had it all together” (like, really!!).

If we’re angry we may resort to condemnation, if we are grieving we might project happiness or amusement, anything but what we’re really feeling. That might be important at certain points in our lives, a boundary. But when it becomes avoidance, deception, fear, then we risk burying our true selves and others may never really know us. Even to the point that well entrenched masks become who we are. The question is, what are we trying to hide and why?

Jung developed the idea of the persona, the person we wanted others to know as ourselves, but not our true self.

I love this unattributed quote: “She threw away all of her masks, and put on her soul.”

That says it all. To dispense with the lie, the deception, which is really self-deception at best, the fear, and embrace our true selves, the raw self, the truly beautiful self. Created, bejeweled physical masks can be creations of great beauty. But the one who lives their true self, nothing could be more beautiful. We often use the phrase “warts and all”, meaning even our less good parts can be seen, our less succesful, less socially acceptable selves can be seen, yet this is healthy. The first step on the road of recovery is to know that we are never going to be perfect. And once we let go the ego, then masks become redundant because there is nothing to protect.

To put on our soul is to let go and find the juice of our lives and let that flow.

When we put on our soul, we are truly beautiful.

Hiding in layers
the weapons of deception
my real is naked

©Paul Cannon

Paul,

pvcann.com

21 Comments

Filed under art, creativity, Haiku, history, life, love, mindfulness, poetry, psychology, quote