Coffee Contemplations : Vol. VIII – Our Masks



2014 Photo Credit : Mikki Sage

On one day a year, as a culture, we take the time to fully transform our outer selves into a representation of something or someone completely different. Some of us go dark, donning costumes that represent pirates, killers, horror film characters. Some of us go bright, rocking faerie wings and glitter. No matter the kind of transformation, for a lot of us, the change is total. We spend time, money, sweat, and tons of energy dreaming and crafting the best costume. We shamelessly wander out into the world in our new skin, and attend parties to be seen as someone new. Sometimes, the embodiment is so strong, people actually become their costume in speech, mannerism, and behaviour. Halloween is all about being some other representation of ourselves – just for the night.

Now I’m in no way claiming that if we dress like Freddy Krueger, it’s because we have this deep desire to be him. That’s just frightening. But I do feel that there is a connection there – whether Nightmare on Elm St. was the first scary movie you were allowed to watch or the one that scared the devil out of you, that face, that personality has some kind of resonance for you. There is something that we long to tap into more fully – whether it’s a memory or a fantasy.


2013 Photo Credit: Wobsarazzi

Many of us that celebrate this holiday love it for the opportunity to be something other than who we usually are. To be something that we connect to in one way or another that brings about some kind of truth for us – even if it’s never explained. Often, it’s not only to be something else – but bigger, badder, awesomer, crazier, and freer than we ever allow ourselves to be in day to day life. This is fed by the age old question  “what or who are you going to be for Halloween?” You have to be something.. and it ought to be exciting and.. well cool. It’s this question that gets us revved up to participate in the costuming ritual.  I always wonder why we don’t ask ourselves that every morning. Not to put on a costume each day to embody someone else, but as a reminder that we have the control to be the person we want to be. And just like a Halloween costume, you have to start building up the components of that persona or “costume,” if you will.  This is deeper than just dressing the part; this is the process of becoming.


2012 Photo Credit : Wobsarazzi

In all honesty, this involves actually removing the mask that we wear every day. Halloween does this by bringing us into another form. When we apply this ideology to everyday life, we find we have to have the same enthusiasm for transformation. Dedication to removing the veil of “I can’t”, the veil of past behaviours or experiences that have become a ball and chain preventing forward movement. The veil of fog and inaction created by thick and loud self-talk that has not stopped claiming that you are one way when you want to be another. The inner version of you that forgot you can be anything in the world. Halloween is my favorite holiday not only for its explosive transformative nature, but also because it reminds me to ask myself  “what am I going to be?”  It’s the opportunity to transform and decide what you’ll be transforming in to with clarity and precision. It reminds me to also remove my own various masks that prevent me from accessing this larger version of myself so I can tap into my truest self shamelessly in everyday life. It reminds me that if I want to represent one thing or another, I have to start putting the pieces together today.

So, as you make the list of the best Halloween costume ideas you thought of AFTER Halloween (we all think of them after the fact, right?) I invite you to take a moment to remove all of the masks. To acknowledge where you truly are, who you truly are, and start thinking about WHO you want to be.

Start doing it. Start collecting all the pieces you need.

I hope you had   a safe and blissful Halloween!

| namaste |



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