Archive for November 5th, 2009
This photo was taken in Changzhou, the city that was home for two years. This canal was only a few short blocks off the junction of two main streets in the downtown area. The coned buds on the tree to the left side are large brilliant mauve flowers in the spring. It was simply amazing to me how the most modern buildings, upscale shopping area and huge shopping crowds could be bordered in just two blocks by this scene which dates back significantly in time, to reveal a different face for China.
This is pretty much the same story, when I think about it, for me. I have a certain polish when I get dressed up. I show my age, but it is not a dated age. It is more a modern maturity that “fits” with modern society. My mask and persona work well and all is well in terms of being at one with the collective.
But, if I retreat even just a little bit, just enough to get a bit of perspective, I see something else about myself. I see that the mask is simply a mask. Under that mask there is a curious combination of light and dark, of shadows and mystery, of exposed warts and wrinkles. And running through this self beneath the mask is an unconsciousness that looks like it might be gentle an peaceful, but in truth is a dangerous place.
Below that peaceful reflective surface … Well, it is all unknown … and often one is right in fearing the unknown … encourage that unknown into the conscious self and all becomes forever changed … and the fear that the ego will be overpowered, possessed …