“If you are irritated by every rub, how will your mirror ever be polished?” El Juglador said. I don’t think he knew what that means to me…
Most people like me live lives of ease. We’ve worked hard to create a reality where everything is predictable. We wake up and know what the rest of our day holds for us. We know what we like to do for fun and with whom we like to share our free time. The people we know understand us. We start a comment and they already know where we’re going with our opinion. They get our “short-hand” comments. Living a life where you don’t have to explain yourself is so easy.
Unless we’re polished public speakers, many of us get lazy with sharing our opinions. How many times has a Facebook comment been misunderstood by others? How many times has a text message caused an argument or a shrug changed a budding friendship?
So, when people around us misunderstand us, when our words are judged wrong, we become irritated and bark our truth, trying to bark louder than the irritating comment.
Aye, there’s the rub, as Shakespeare’s Hamlet said. If we rub with anger, though, we’ll streak the mirror and ruin the reflection. Isn’t the goal to make the reflection sparkle? Shouldn’t we try to get to the truth?
What rubs my mirror, my reality, is the conflict that comes from not living an easy life. What rubs my mirror right now is discord and difficulty. It is not knowing what is next on my journey.
I have considered going home to my safe, predictable life where my reflection in the mirror was clean and made-up and nearly flawless. Then I remember one crucial bit of information … other people thought they knew me, thought they understood what made me click. The truth is, they only knew what I had revealed to them. They only understood the persona I became when I was near them.
Sometimes, I thought I was that person.
The reason I know that was not my truth – I was not truly happy. I was looking for something, but I didn’t know what. Now that I’m discovering myself on this Vision Quest, I’m realizing what was missing.
“I” was missing. After piling so many layers of illusion between me and the world, I didn’t understand what was my essence.
When I looked in the mirror, I saw none of those people, because none of those people were really me.
I know some truths about me –
- I love. I love my students and my friends and my family and the stranger panhandling at the light. I truly feel love for all of them, although the intensity varies. I am usually patient and understanding because I know that within each being, human or animal or bug or plant, lies a part of God’s love.
- My word is my bond. If I say I’m going to do something, I work hard to make that promise a reality. The promise becomes my truth.
For now, those are the only truths I can account for because, as I look in the mirror, I am rubbing away the disguises I wore before when I was trying to impress the people I love.
Mirror, mirror for us all …
What’s the truth behind my walls?
So maybe when El Juglador spoke of polishing our mirrors, he knew exactly what it would mean to me. That’s today’s lesson.
Much love to you, my friends.
The Dragonfly’s Student