Uncover Your True Identity
February is the month of Mardi Gras, which has been said to be a celebration of life and carnival before the period of fasting for Lent. I suppose its purpose is to satisfy the appetite, a la ‘Fat Tuesday,’ before a period of abstinence. Making the sacrifice more palatable, so to speak.
I was shocked to find Mardi Gras categorized as a Christian festival, but considering the extent of mixture that has been embraced in The Church, it’s not too surprising.
Masks, elaborate disguises and costumes have become synonymous with Mardi Gras, along with a fair amount of revelry. Drinking, eating and perhaps participating in things that one would not normally do. A bit of an unrestrained consumption party.
It draws attention to the idea of adults dressing up; looking like they’re having a good time, and partaking of the pleasures, indulgences and camaraderie that go along with it, playing out in more insidious ways.
Like at work, with family and friends, at church, in real life.
Take the concept of masks - a cover to conceal true identity - and consider your own life.
What might you be doing to mask the way you really feel? (start by ditching the F word, fine for starters).
Or to keep a part of yourself hidden from view? (your own and others)
Or to project an image that is not authentically you?
The trouble with pretending is, it’s so incredibly beguiling we can trick ourselves into believing it’s real.
We are so used to covering up that it feels awkward and uncomfortable to strip down naked and look intently at what you see. Even when the gaze is your own.
Gazing is an essential spiritual practice to align with what is true, cultivate authenticity, and set the right coordinates in the rudder of your life.
So this masquerade season, may I suggest ditching the ball, and look intently in the mirror.