So long as we are living and working in society, it will be necessary to wear the mask that society wants to see. But we need to remember always that our spiritual quest is an inner journey. How can we maintain constant awareness of our spiritual journey while also knowing when to wear our mask of practicality?
Spirituality is to return back to our innate naturalness. We are nature. Therefore, nature is our best teacher in learning about when we need to wear a mask. Like nature, at times we do need a mask or camouflage to keep ourselves safe. Or we might need to be like a tortoise and draw both our head and limbs into a tough shell whenever we anticipate an external attack. Nature has so much to teach us. In fact, it is separation from nature that causes all pains and suffering in life. But as we practice meditation and live mindful moments, our masks will fall off and our natural self will blossom into a radiant being of light.
Yes, masks can serve a purpose, but they also can lead to many problems in life. As we observe those around us we see so many hidden stories. Using masks to survive helps temporarily, but if we are constantly masked we cannot open up to anyone, anywhere. These bottled up emotions are breeding all kinds of mental issues not only for adults and seniors, but children too. With all our material abundance we are moving away from each other, creating voids. The worst symptom is there is no one we can trust to listen to us non-judgmentally. This is the real threat. We need to practice talking and listening mindfully, heartfully, and joyfully to recreate a humane society to survive as a species. Again, as we observe nature we see how animals naturally attend to each other’s needs and assure the survival of their species.
We humans are gradually losing our presence as we are getting caught up in the mess of fake persona; it serves well for a while, but then a time comes when the persona becomes too heavy to carry any longer. That is when our inner journey truly starts, and we can shake off the false masks and embrace our true natural self.
We need to realize that any identity we create is for the world. Our true identity is hidden in the recess of our heart. How can we be happy with our shadow identity? How long can we be happy to wear a mask called personality? When will we shed the false persona and know that we are the children of eternal light and dive within to know who we are?
Again, nature shows us the way as we observe the life of a butterfly. The caterpillar covers itself with the silken fibers from its own body and remains bound within that cell, masked from the world. Nobody can help it come out of that. But when the caterpillar in due course transforms itself into a butterfly, then it cuts open its cell and comes out without anyone’s help.
So, too, when we learn to love our natural self, we can begin to shed our masks and be more vulnerable, loving, and compassionate to others and ourselves. Self-love is to once again reestablish the lost connection with the very essence of Nature’s Life Principle which is loving one’s own natural self. Then the ego’s veil is dropped; the face of the soul comes to express itself without any mask or veil. Life and love are once again expressed in naturalness.