Thanks to Bernadette, who offers the following reflection for us (I took the liberty of making a title for it based on my views, which you’ll see later in the comments – we are in Chapter now, which means all day meetings, and very little time to blog.)
Well, this is an invitation I’ll take you up on. I do indeed feel the need to chatter and as some might do, as we hide behind our keyboards, I can have a sense of being anonymous… which leads me into our topic.
For being anonymous, unknown, you can place yourself into an introduction and be literally whomever you wanted. Now I don’t mean in a sneaky, lying or underhanded way to any extent, I simply mean you have a choice of being. There is a quote stating, “The last of the human freedoms is to choose one’s attitudes.” Yet is the attitude and persona shown to the world or each person encountered, the one’s that are most favorable to you? Do you really have a choice? And I use plural because with all of us, there are several roles that we play for certain situations and people. My thought is my dislike of having to conform to so many different people that it becomes a worry on whether you have lost who you yourself really are.
As an example of what I speak of; a female police officer must have a persona during many situations other than how she behaves with her mom or how she feels inside. This is understandable. Many jobs require a certain mannerism that is nothing to who you are inside. Deep within ourselves we are who we are, but often we must keep much of who we are, well hidden. Although I don’t know for sure, but I would think a nun/sister wouldn’t have too many situations where she must conform her personality to society. I know others are watching her like a hawk to see if she matches up to their ideas. That would be stressful all by itself, possibly annoying as hell and maybe in some ways, humorous. As for me, I don’t like having to pretend so much, it makes me feel harsh, like I’m killing something within myself. But, if I’ve learned anything, I am a survivor. Well, thanks for inviting my chatter.
So, I think this is a great topic for all of us to reflect on, not just nuns. What are the ways we reveal different aspects of ourselves in different settings? Under what circumstances, if any, is this being inauthentic or compromising our personal integrity? Please join the conversation…I certainly will respond when I get a moment.