Genuine Fake

Who are you? Who am I?

Your name was given to you by someone else. Your gender, your birthplace, and your race were all given to you. Your job is transient at best.

Inevitably, when anyone starts sitting in silence with their eyes closed in meditation, Who Am I? is a question that will arise. If I’m honest, though, it has always been a question for me. It’s one of the questions that made me wonder if I was crazy. Paradoxically, in philosophy and psychology, it’s the very question that keeps you sane.

I am a mother of 3 amazing and frustrating kids, I was working full time, I have a handful of friends, [insert standardized blurbs here]. To each category, I had a different set of filters and personality. People always tell me how much they love how real and genuine I am. At the same time, in the corridors of my mind, the real me peers out while bound and gagged. Has anyone else felt this way? I’ve changed a lot in the last year, but looking back, I only revealed a meager portion of my truth. How I actually felt in situations, or what I actually wanted. I think how many times I would say OK! to things I did not want to do? Or say, “I’m fine.” when the actual emotion would be more accurately described as “Die in a fire so hot Satan will feel sad.”

Carl Jung has called what we repress, what we do not like about ourselves, etc. to be our shadow self.  It’s also been called your demons, dark side, and so on. The Buddha calls it suffering. Most religions call it sin. It might feel like a stretch to bring sin in this, but to me, it’s all different words for the same concept. I think most of our lives our mistaken concepts – another definition of a lie. A lack of understanding of the words, because we use the words too much.

Part of the problem, I think, is a lack of time for everyone. We’re all constantly reading – texts, blogs, social media, etc. so words are commonplace now. We don’t linger on words for context and alternative meanings, and abbreviations are becoming more common. This is creating a lot of challenges in communication. If I write over 600 words, the likelihood of this blog being read drops considerably. Over 2,000, it’s almost certain. Yet, how can someone explain psychology, philosophy, or any other detailed topic in short sequences? I don’t know, but it sounds like a fantastic challenge, and that’s why I am starting this blog. If people don’t read it, that doesn’t matter, because I’m explaining it to myself, and I need to understand it, because this is how I’m helping myself. The self I am still getting to know.

Who Am I?

My world shifted when I heard Alan Watts explain in a seminar that a persona, the root in Latin, referenced the mask the actors wore on stage. Jung used persona to explain the mask you wear in society/interactions with others. Therefore, my filters and all were completely normal – expected, standard, what everyone else does. The strain of this, however, made me behave crazily – aggressive, angry, confused, panicking, and depressed. I had so many personalities – same root – actor’s mask. Our personalities, all things to do with our person-hood, anything you can associate with your person, will all come to the root of the mask.

When people tell me I am a genuine person, they tell me I am being a genuine fake. Watt’s made me realize that, and I started laughing hysterically. That’s exactly how I’ve always felt. I wanted to be a diamond, but I was rocking a cubic zirconia. (Pink Floyd’s Shine On You Crazy Diamond just randomly came on YouTube as I typed this…)

If anything, most of my personalities contained a possessive. I identified purely in externals. ___’s Mom, ___’s analyst, ____’s wife, ____’s friend. I wasn’t my anything. I could not say writer, philosopher, Buddhist, anything, really. I don’t even know that those are genuine answers, but at least they don’t contain forms of grammar in them?

Behind my smile, busy work week, constant cleaning, activities for my family, well-cooked meals, etc. was an unending narration of every shortcoming, every misspoken word, every misstep, every un-asked question, every fear, and everything I have ever wanted to do but never did. It was varying streams of consciousness that eventually would become roaring tsunamis of psychosis almost a year ago. The human mind can only be pushed so far.

The nice thing about psychosis (I’ll add that to the list of my eventual book, “Things I thought I’d never say”) is it definitively gave me the answer to “what is crazy?”I know what it is like to be a few sandwiches short of a picnic. I said to a friend the other day, “It gets really easy to stay humble and have no shame in my game when I know I ran into my house screaming I’ve killed us all!” is that fucked up to say? Yeah, probably. What else can I do? Cry about it? It happened almost a year ago. I didn’t die. I’d rather get to the point where I can laugh about terrible things in my life.

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I think I’ve naturally tried to do what Jung has said to do all along. Embrace your shadows. Love your demons. Forgive your sins. Say yes to that dress.

Isn’t it weird how much easier it is to do the externals, yet realistically, you are all you have, and you are probably the meanest to yourself? When I started meditating, I started noticing and hearing my thoughts. I was a real dickhead. When I realized how genuine my mask was, how much more I liked the outside me… I decided I needed to fix that. I wanted to be authentic. To do that, I had to start liking myself at least. All of me. Not just the one I painted on for the stage.

When I began to see everything associated with the very idea of me was fake, I began to lose all the fear I had about opinions, or whatever it was. I’m not really sure what put the notion in my mind that I had to wear so many masks. In truth, it stopped being about people anyway, I just want to know who I am.

I am okay being an onion like Shrek said. As long as I understand my layers, as long as I love and accept my layers. I don’t care if anyone else thinks I stink.  I don’t want to be a mask, an actor on a stage.

Yet…isn’t it also fascinating that another definition for person is: the modes of being God in the Trinity? You are either an actor on stage or you are God? Not much wiggle room there!

((Just over 1200 words, curious to see how this does, it’s optimal word count. If you enjoyed, kindly reblog & share on your social media, and I will return the favor in kind if I enjoy your work! I am on Facebook & Twitter as well, just getting started everywhere))

Earlier Posts:

Who are you? Who am I? 

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24 thoughts on “Genuine Fake

    1. Thank you. I’m a Freud fan as well…I studied him when I was in 5th grade or so(I’m a dork haha!)

      CG Jung actually studied under Freud. The two ultimately disagreed regarding religion and spirituality. Jung’s view (and I think this goes to counter will, but tell me if I’m rusty!!!!) was that we need faith, the divine, spirituality/religion for a healthy psyche. That there is just more than our little psyches. He shows collective consciousness, as well as the archetypes/anima/animus that form the collective unconscious – the stream of life you reference in your post in your blog. Whereas Freud views us very much as frail egos in battles of super ego and id, Jung sees ego shrouded in persona, needing individuation, to connect with divine and seek the flow of life…heavy paraphrase. In both, they see heavy ties to childhood and ego behavior, but Jung studied all religions to formulate his psychology whereas Freud didn’t believe in them so they finally stopped working together.

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  1. Reblogged this on richwrapper and commented:
    On Yassy’s recommends I read this first blog posting from an amaziang and critically important writer: she makes me want to revisit seventh grade and grab that speed-reading paperback and wade through it again because I’ll never have time to chew the entire banquet this posting “Genuine Fake” presents in Our True Lies’ blog.

    Liked by 1 person

      1. Mostly – not always, for in that minefield I find strange devices doing harm – I always do enjoy me and what I find. After all, I am in charge of this creature above this keyboard. And I have new garlics – wild and domestic – to move to sunny patches along with the greens, parsleys and such. And a salad – in making – wonders why I trifle so long outdoors. It’s near 80 Fahrenheit! But will lettuce listen to reason. Joins up with masticatory machinery and The Rest and grumble: ‘Tis Time.

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  2. I blame Yassy Yaskhan for presenting OurBeautifulLies for my perusal. I reblogd Genuine Fake right off: now I have to go back and redo that seventh grade self-help speed-reading course to shoehorn this important and mind-tickling work into my time online.

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    1. 🙂 Thank you so much for your perusal, and effusive refusal to eschew a chance to take a re-do 🙂 So grateful you were inspired and very grateful for the reblog! I look forward to reading your works and some more mind tickling to come 🙂

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      1. The pleasure – and honor – mostly or muchly all mine: and now I have two more wonderful women to blame for my sparse output because my keyboard refuses to unlink. You got a within-minutes “like” on That Book With Faces when FB automatically swiped from the ether your suchapowerful stream. My best wishes and already I have sent mil gracias to Lady Yasmin for flunging your words myway. J

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  3. “We are oft to blame in this, ‘Tis too much proved, that with devotion’s visage And pious action we do sugar o’er The devil himself”. That quote comes to mind when reading this wonderful blog. This was very interesting, Yassy pointed me in this direction and I must say I’m glad she did, seems like some of the things I write about. Carl Jung quoted “People will do anything, no matter how absurd, to avoid facing their own souls.” I like your whole thing on mask and the mask people wear, I believe some forget who they are underneath and that’s why they get labeled as fake. Beauty is a curse because it hides the true monsters in the world they say unless people can admit who they are by wanting to remove that mask like you did. It takes a strong individual to be happy being themselves and I commend you for writing your story out like this and saying that you are being better. I look forward to reading the rest of your journey, I love to read so it doesn’t matter if it’s 600 or 2000 words! Nice work!!🌹🌹

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    1. Thank you! I felt the same when I read yours. I chuckled thinking we clearly were on the same wavelength hahahahaha. Thank you for your kind words!!!

      I’ve said before the beautiful people are the ones who have scars. Usually their scars are invisible, but they’ll show you with one look in their eyes.

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      1. Hahaha!!! I read this post and thought I was reading one of my own, this was an awesome post indeed.
        Beautiful people do have the most hidden scars but all ugly surfaces after a while.

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  4. I read every word of this article Genuine Fake, and it sounds to me that you are a diamond in the ruff and that life if chipping away all the unnecessary garbage. I can understand what you are and have gone through to some extent. The one thing that keeps my feet on the ground is this from Genesis 1:28, “God created man in His own image, in the image of God He created him; male and female He created them.” Created in the image of God makes you unique. You are and will always be somebody.

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    1. Thank you very much for reading and for this comment! You made me smile!!! I agree completely! I forget when, but I said to someone: it feels like I can breathe anymore. Just take big deep breaths. Being myself is so nice!

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