Most of us hate the thought of being naked.
Naked usually means to be without clothes.
But naked can refer to being truly ‘you’ – the ‘you’ that is more real than fake happy Facebook status updates.
Do you know what you look like naked?
It is not easy to find out who we really are. Most of us never truly figure that out.
Hopefully, while we are figuring out who we are, we get to some level of self-acceptance. Part of that self-acceptance means accepting that not everybody is going to love us or accept us.
And that is okay too.
Many years ago I came across a truly amazing piece of writing that has really stuck in my head. It speaks about emotional nakedness.
I would like to end today’s chat with these words. It’s quite long – so I apologise for this. But, I think that these words are really, really powerful.
The author is Oriah Mountain Dreamer, and the extract comes from her novel, The Invitation. I hope that you will find something in these words that speaks to you:
It doesn’t interest me what you do for a living.
I want to know what you ache for, and if you dare to dream of meeting your heart’s longing.
It doesn’t interest me how old you are.
I want to know if you will risk looking like a fool for love,for your dream, for the adventure of being alive.
It doesn’t interest me what planets are squaring your moon.
I want to know if you have touched the center of your own sorrow, if you have been opened by life’s betrayals or have become shrivelled and closed from fear of further pain!
I want to know if you can sit with pain, mine or your own, without moving to hide it or fade it, or fix it.
I want to know if you can be with joy, mine or your own, if you can dance with wildness and let the ecstasy fill you to the tips of your fingers and toes without cautioning us to be careful, to be realistic, to remember the limitations of being human.
It doesn’t interest me if the story you are telling me is true.
I want to know if you can disappoint another to be true to yourself; if you can bear the accusation of betrayal and not betray your own soul; if you can be faithless and therefore trustworthy.
I want to know if you can see beauty even when it’s not pretty, every day, and if you can source your own life from its presence.
I want to know if you can live with failure, yours and mine, and still stand on the edge of the lake and shout to the silver of the full moon, “Yes!”
It doesn’t interest me to know where you live or how much money you have.
I want to know if you can get up, after the night of grief and despair, weary and bruised to the bone, and do what needs to be done to feed the children.
It doesn’t interest me who you know or how you came to be here.
I want to know if you will stand in the center of the fire with me and not shrink back.
It doesn’t interest me where or what or with whom you have studied.
I want to know what sustains you, from the inside, when all else falls away. I want to know if you can be alone with yourself and if you truly like the company you keep in the empty moments.