God doesn’t provide you with a “self” – Your parents and society do that.
That “self,” however, is not the same as you Since you’re undiscoverable as God – And always free to become your “true self.”
Your present self is really only a mask – a role you play – So, if you start believing you’re “better” than others Take your mask off and put someone else’s on – Try a “black one,” for instance – Then, “talk back” to a police officer And see how long you live. Or take your mask off and put on One of the opposite sex – Spend a little time there Experiencing different roles, Costumes, Language.
The point of comfortably inhabiting one’s everyday self Is you’ll probably never have the opportunity to meet up with your “true self” Until you retire and have given up your everyday work routines – Then, turning around, you’ll discover you’ve become invisible – And no one can see you any more – Because your “work self” has evaporated And, now, you’re no one at all!
It’s only a blink or two from this exact point Until you’re really gone – Actually, though, you’ve always been really gone But just never had to acknowledge it.
That is, when you come to be able to live the life you were meant to live – before being born –
Before getting “beaten up” by family, society, and culture
And “molded” – with or without your active participation –
Into an “ego” that occasionally reflects aspects of your true self – but frequently does not.
Zen people call this true self – our “original face.”
To illustrate the weight of mask upon which your roles are typically displayed –
Start by relaxing your facial muscles –
Then check to see whether your face still remains tight –
If so, try to let your face become as “liquid” as possible – completely non-judgmental –
Until you’re left with as un-tense a face as possible.
That’s as close, without a lot of additional spiritual work,
That you’ll be able to get to your “original face” for now –
A face that exhibits your naked heart –
A face that reflects your essential being –
When Jesus counseled us
To be “born again”
He didn’t mean just once –
Because it doesn’t take long
For a new self to freeze
Into a mask.
What he was saying –
Since God is absolutely free,
We, also, need to be.
Each moment should be experienced as a new birth,
So that our prior selves do not have the power
To bind us back into the past.
Love won’t arrive through habit or rote –
It always needs to be free!
That’s why, as we grow older and gain greater experience,
Jesus wants us, simultaneously, to spiritually regress –
Not just back to when we were a child –
But all the way back to when we were newborn
Where the subjective world begins again –
All our lifelong experience
Joined to the bud of birth –