Sunday, April 24, 2016

naked as ....

Caught between my mental teeth like a stringy bit of asparagus is a quote attributed to Cicero in an article about Mary Beard, a current-day British classics teacher who reminds me that the word "rapscallion" cannot be applied solely to men.

Cicero's line: If we are not ashamed to think it, we should not be ashamed to say it.

What a challenge. What a -- perhaps -- truth. What man or woman would not feel the resonance of such an encouragement? The secret and sometimes not so secret longing to pass unencumbered and undressed through life. How wonderful might that be? And, simultaneously, eeeek! 

 How tiring secrets and camouflage become. What might it be like to lay ALL your cards on the table?
The "eek" quotient, at first blush, relates to how much weakness, how much vulnerability, others might find in the flaws so carefully camouflaged.

But I think there is a greater fear still than the tender vulnerabilities that might arise in saying what anyone might prefer to hold back in silence. And that fear is huge. It is, quite simply, that there is a sneaking suspicion that if I were to tell the damnable truth, if I were to expose my vulnerabilities and mistakes ... no one would give a shit and that would be worse than damnation. Who would I be if life simply yawned and said, "so what?" Isn't that worse than the death anyone might pretend to fear? How could I be someone if I were merely a bit player? It is not a pleasant prospect: Rather a damnable sinner and camouflage weaver than a ... a ... a ... what?

Yes, to go naked would be lighter and less constrained by quite a lot. The layers of camouflage and artifice can weigh mightily. I may beg to be free ... right up to the moment when freedom is offered on a silver platter.

Sorta like Plato's cave dwellers who claim to want the light but cling like fury to the shadows.


2 comments:

  1. I'd enjoy such freedom only if it were denied everyone else. If you tell someone what you think they'll want to tell you why you're wrong. And it's not that that's impossible, i'm pretty skilled at being wrong. But i'm really trying to avoid stale arguments with knuckleheads. But if i suspect someone might have an opinion worth hearing i'll ask for it.

    There was a time, when anyone who would assert their freedom to tell me what they thought unasked for, i'd tell 'em to "go stand on your head 'n piss up a rope". But i'm lazier now, and have shortened it to "piss off". Anymore, being free to think it is enough for me. I don't need to talk about it.

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  2. Lionel Lin RongxiangApril 27, 2016 at 2:10 AM

    My mother told me to save some water by skipping the sanitary toilets and just poop directly on some newspapers, wrap up the poop decently, and dispose of them decently. This came after a community gardening project saw me recycling my poop directly as fertiliser. Fertilising with my manure worked decent.

    As far as nakedness is concerned, it is profound beyond my lack of intellect. I was born naked, you folks too are, we all are, they probably are, all sentient beings oguht to be born naked. Yet somehow I keep my clothes on most of the time, otherwise we are talking about some Eido Shimanwhatshisname chap again.

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