As I read about this material, it prodded me to think about my own life and what I’ve kept hidden behind the “curtains” for most of my life. And more importantly, why I wasn’t able to see things about my personality, character and experiences that were there. Even those people who knew me the best…my wife, friends and family weren’t able to see me for who I really was.
The analogy of scrim has given me an understanding that I never had before and it is helping me to understand not only who I am, but also who some very important people in my life are. I am discovering that if all you do is look hard from the outside, you’re not going to get to see the whole person. But that’s what we tend to do in our humanness. We look at the “visible” and make a judgment about who or what the person is. If they’re not well-dressed, we may perceive them to be of “below average” intelligence. If they drive an “old beater”, we may decide that they are poor or destitute. If the color of their skin is different from ours or the language they speak is different from ours, we tend to avoid them and treat them as if they were alien not to our country, but to our planet.
The reality is…we are all different and unique. We will never be able to understand who others are, or who we are, until we take the time to readjust the light in their lives. This is often uncomfortable because we don’t always know what is going to be revealed behind the scrim. It feels safer not knowing what the whole story is…what images or memories or failures or experiences might be lurking behind the fabric. So, we tend to keep the light shining so that everything is opaque and invisible.
In my own life, I’m learning to allow the light to move from the front of the curtain to behind it. I have to admit, some of the scenes that are revealed are not pleasant or comfortable. But, I need to know. And as I continue to readjust the light in my own life, I’m discovering that others that I care about can become more comfortable looking behind their curtains as well.