Friday, September 11, 2009
Dance of the Seven Veils
Find out who you are, and do it on purpose. --Dolly Parton
We're a funny species, we homo sapiens. What other animal has so many psychic layers? What other animal spends so much time and money trying to reveal its "true" nature? We sit for hours with friends, sisters and brothers, hairdressers, bartenders and psychotherapists, talking and talking, trying to unwind enough to understand what's at the bottom of any bothersome situation.
We consult oracles, astrology forecasts, tarot cards, read Carolyn Hax's advice column, and of course we read many many many many many many self help books, in an effort to understand all the deep subterranean foundations of our behavior.
Yep, we human beings are funny animals.
I'm thinking about this because, through all the recent reunions with friends from a long time ago (and from twice as long ago as that), I am learning that I'm really not that different than I ever was. Long before my ten years of psychotherapy, I was pretty much the same person I am today, "the original free spirit," as my high school friend described it. In high school I felt anything but free spirited, believe me, at least on the inside. But the life I've lived definitely reflects my friend's observation.
All the therapy, etc. was well worth it because it wasn't enough (for me at least) to be who I was/am, I needed to understand, I needed to peel away so many layers and old stories, I needed to come face to face with the essence of me. Others saw right through me, but I didn't get it. It is ironic, in a very funny way, to come full circle with the process.
Maybe from now on I won't have to be so focused on my own navel. I know who I am and I do it on purpose. Now maybe I'll make time to do something different than all that. Wouldn't that be nice?