I recently watched an excerpt of an interview with
Bea Arthur. In it she speaks of "truth" in acting. She states it
so simply, so matter of factly.
I would say that it would go for all parts of life...we could use
more "truth." I don't say truth, as opposed to lying, but
rather truth as opposed to some affected response to a
In the culture here in the United States (I won't limit it to the
US, however, it is the culture that I am the most acquainted
with, and therefore the one I feel best able to speak to)
there is a superficial culture in which many of us live - we
have the public face and the private face.
In public we act and speak one way, and behind closed doors
act and speak differently. This dichotomy stems from (or
so I would suggest) the response to potential judgments
should we ever act the way we really wanted to. We would
rather spare ourselves the judgments, rather than be true
Last I knew, being human was far from being perfect in any
way that we as humans tend to define it, any way. So why
is it that we feel propelled to be something we're not? Is
it to "fit in?" But then what in the world are we fitting into?
Why should we compromise who we are to be a version
of ourselves that only fits with another's awkward - and
perceivably compromised - version of themselves?
The repercussions of this way of being and doing things are
endless and woven through every aspect of our lives.
Some might say it was a good thing, because it defines
"society," and we can know what to expect.
However, I have to wonder how much society benefits from
being a pseudo version of itself. When people are afraid to
speak their mind, to live their dreams, to say "yes this is
me" I would say it limits the possibilities of what society
is capable of. It is the people that allowed themselves to
stand out and be judged that made some of the biggest
strides for society as a whole.
In some way, every day, every moment, is an opportunity
for us to take a stand for who and how we are. It is an
opportunity for us to decide which way it is that we want
to go, what character we will personify.
I would suggest that so many of us are "hypnotized" by
the way we should be that it is way too easy to forfeit
ourselves on a regular basis. It is way too easy to
default to the "looking good" option.
As humans, we go for the comfortable - which isn't always
the option that serves us the best. It may seem that it
does, however, the key to knowing is whether or not when
you are behind the closed doors of your mind you are okay
with yourself and your deceptions. I don't know too many
people who appreciate living with the discomfort of realties
created from the distortions of their having to be some way
other than who they truly are.
If we lived more from the person we would like ourselves to
be and less from the "ideal" that others would like to experience
us as, I suspect we would be lying a whole lot less, and liking
ourselves a whole lot more. It takes a lot of effort to defend
something we're not.
The public self is very often a lie, and is a reaction to the things
and people around us. It takes so much more energy, too,
to react than act because we're not pulling from anything solid,
but rather something that can change from moment to moment.
If we know ourselves, and know our core beliefs, and know
the kind of person we want to be, I would think life would
likely seem so much easier. You'd be surprised at how many
people behind closed doors are just like you - but not in the
way that it might appear on the surface.
There is beauty in truth and truth in beauty and, in my opinion,
being true to who and how you are is the most beautiful thing
in the world.