Naked Perfection Isn’t Found Out There

LLOYD KAKEPETUM ‘Raven and Mother Earth’

Sometimes I find images without looking for them, images that are powerful statements. This image to the left is the latest image that found a path through my thinking mind to reach deep into the core of my psyche, that place that we call “Soul.” The artist who created this masterpiece has many images that evoke the voices and stories of North American First Nations.

The image is powerful. The raven embraces the feminine, Mother Earth, as though to protect the darkness with the shadows pressing. And, I am left with the question: Will he swallow the sun?

There is no doubt in my mind that we are hurting as a human race. We know that there is something wrong, but we aren’t exactly sure what it is that needs fixing in us as a people, and in the world in general. When we look in the mirror, we flinch and protest that this can’t really be who we are, this stranger in the mirror, especially when we are faced with our naked selves. Somehow, the internal images we have of ourselves don’t match what our eyes see. How do we solve this problem? Most often, we cover up the outer self, as well as engage in all manner of efforts to physically change what is seen in the mirror. Make-up, diets, exercise programs in expensive gyms, sunlamps, designer label clothing, tattoos and piercings, plastic surgery: the efforts to reshape and hide behind disguises attempt to hide the ugly truth that stares at us in the mirror. Yet, in spite of all the money, time and effort we devote to erase that ugly truth, we can’t unsee the self hidden from the eyes of others.. Life just isn’t fair.

It isn’t just our bodies that are betraying us, we see that so many people around us are working overtime to convince us that we need to work harder and spend more money to become worthy humans, to be lovable. We try to convince each other that we are only worthy if we embrace the latest in everything.

Yet there are voices that would tell us that we are already beautiful and perfect. In spite of those closest to us who love us as we are and tell us that, we dismiss these affirmations of our outer and inner self. After all, regardless of the truth, we convince ourselves that they are obliged to affirm us in spite of our ugliness, our imperfections which we so desperately want to banish. We look out and see the images of perfection in all of our media. We see all those smart and fashionable people who seem to have what we are desperately seeking. And we become angry, especially with ourselves. We hate being defective, imperfect. And so we hide and deny as much about ourselves as we can.

What we need is what we can’t seem to give ourselves, a compassionate acceptance of our body, mind and soul.

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