First Skin

EE cummings perhaps said it best when he wrote that one of the most difficult struggles we endevour to undertake as Human Beings is to simply be ourselves in a world which strives everyday to make us everything but who we are (paraphrased).

With this in mind - the metephore of our First Skin - begins to bear meaning , as those parts of ourselves that are truly unique and signatures if you like of the very essence of who we are. All too often I have been less brave to show my first skin, for fear of being judged less than, and losing a love I hold precious and dear.

Once we have undone all the myth of what we have been taught or read, perhaps there is this parallel jouney of the self discovery of what our First Skin actually looks like, and how it feels to live in it, move in it and speak from it. I have come to learn as I have gotten older that there simply is no other way for me. When I meet another who feels similarly, I recognise a particular bravery and resillience in them, and perhaps in myself, that is willing and indeed longing to find and express that First Skin.

So...under the guise of who I think you would like me to be, I might make the mistake of betraying myself to please you. Under the guise of the layers of masks I might wear, for fear of you seeing the real me, and losing you, I might betray myself too.

Perhaps our First Skin is our original contract if you like , to honor ourselves and the journey we are here to serve. Whew! It is a moment to moment practice and I have freinds who know well how to carry themselves gently in the learning of such a practice!! And in that I am still very much a student!

Within the beauty and complexity of relationship - how do we stay true to ourselves , and true to our partners , and run towards love without cutting our own heads off? ( Kabir), or being boxed into oblivion!

Indeed! How much of my own mind has this complexity occupied as I grow and discover? Me thinks... a very lot!
enjoy the video - it was a privileged journey and joy to make!

So - to all of our First Skins then - to living comfortably in them , and to their discovery and ever expanding expression!


Why is your lens missing?

Last week I met a mate for lunch . When I arived he was wearing sunglasses - but missing the left lens. I asked him rather obtusely what was that about and he said he used the specs for riding his bike , and then said something about bi - focals . I left it at that , and he continued to stare out of his specs - with one eye behind the glass , the other not , as if nothing was wrong at all!

The waitress came bye and asked directly - why is your lens missing. No it's not! he said - yes it is I said! He took it off and much to his shagrin - he saw what we had both seen . I cant believe it he said ! I never saw that! 

So - I am sharing this because he is a pretty intellegent , comprehensive thinking guy - with many wise insights to lifes complexities! ( I think!), and so .. it got me thinking (again), what dangerous assumptions could I make about a man who cant see that he is missing a lens out of his glasses? And then - after making that assumption, how would my judgements affect how I interacted with him, or the story I make up about how he meets the world, or might meet my world!

Thing is you see, the glasses just became a metaphore for me , of all the things I dont know that im not seeing, literally staring me in the face.

I was reminded again that my assumptions would be incorrect , and that in that moment that Mark took off his glasses and surprised us all , by his genuine not knowing, I was witnessing a rare but beautifull thing. That is that, most often we don't get told what we may be missing, especially if we are alone! and ... that it used to be so hard for me to acknowledge that I was wrong about something. Well - what a great gift that has become for me!

At this time in my life I would much rather treat those occasions with a sense of wonderment and appreciation , humor and acceptance .Why? because it shows me again and again how little I know, how vulnerable I am, and yes that can be scary! And, more potently than all that... it opens a wide window into the possibility of all that I don't yet know , all that I have closed myself off to , all the opportunities and surprises that continue to renew my life again and again!

Heres to more of that !.....

Just thought I'd share that with you ...! 

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