Thursday, May 14, 2009
The Finite Mask That Covers the Infinite
Joseph Campbell is probably our best known contemporary expert on the subject of masks, and his work including his massive studies, Masks of God and Masks of Eternity, offer his keen insight into our own abilities to don a mask and uncover the masks we find.
What is it about us that put on our masks? What about us creates the need for one? When do we confuse our mask with who we really are? When are masks useful and when do they become obstacles for us?
I’m not talking about the functional, physical mask such as theatrical, surgical, protect and disguise mask etc. I am talking about the mask of persona, the way we pretend to be one way and are really another. Politesse is a good example and can often be a cultural custom. When our words and mannerisms are polite, but our actions and innuendos aggressive, we are wearing a mask. When we profess undying love as a means to an end, and walk away in the morning light, we are wearing a mask. Sometimes, we lose sight of our own masks and are confused about who we really are. Why?
What do YOU think?
Artwork by Susan Seddon Boulet Many thanks.