Monday, March 23, 2009

A Response about Authentic Self

This is in response to my blog post: Authentic Family Living

Hello (un)relaxeddad,

Thank you so much for your comment! I love to consider your socratic questions! Beautiful thoughts for my walk this morning.... Here are my responses:

1. One might argue that the moment you put "Authentic" in bold type, you're a) creating a label and b) implicitly suggesting that there is such a think as in-authentic family living.

A)Yes, one might argue that. And what I really was doing was sharing that I was creating a new community...
So I tried to share the title clearly in bold...

Is it a Label? I consider a label static, non-changing, so according to my own belief, it is not a label as Living is an action word. So not so much a label, more of a definition. Of course, I could be very wrong, I often am...

B)Yes, I believe there are thousands of people who walk around living in-authentic lives... I was one of them. Sometimes, I still catch myself in a "role" that someone else told me about or I am making choices that are practical over what I believe is true in my heart.

I describe "authentic" as honest, present and original.

Honesty is allowing your truth to come from inside your body. Ask your heart, "What am I feeling right now?" Being honest is allowing your moods and preferences to change moment to moment.

The present is always now and your awareness of the here and now happens in your mind when listening, seeing, smelling, tasting, and feeling everything in the moment right now. Living in the present is active, never stuck, labeled or designated.

Being original is connecting with the divine spirit and your unique journey. Before you created and believed the "stories" that caused suffering (look up Byron Katie on Google), your spirit was free and lived as an observer. Stories, although fun around a campfire, cloud your ability to express yourself as an original masterpiece with a journey all your own.

Basically, living authentically is an active practice not a static label. So if you are not actively practicing the art of living authentically, you are in-authentic at that moment. Some of us choose that way of living for years and decades.

However, the beauty of this new community is it doesn't matter what you are doing. If you are interested in being there, you are welcome. Your choice becomes the path to authentic living!

2. It's very hard to avoid making walls, foundations and structures, even in the form of a kind of 'negative' - and is it possible to build any kind of self without them?

I love this question the most! Is it possible to build a sense of self without structures built from labels?

I believe YES! If you allow your authentic living to occur, something will soon come to pass in your life: You will want to change who you are. This may happen moment to moment or decade to decade. When you hear stories of the lawyer who became an artist or a doctor who became a plumber, you are fascinated because they took a risk to live authentically. They broke down the structures they built with the labels they created and took a turn.

Of course, this may also happen when the artist becomes a CPA or the hippie becomes a Wall Street millionaire, though I am not sure if those stories sell like the other ones do...
I changed from pink princess, to punker, to vogue fashion, to new-waver, to hippie, to country music 2-stepper, to new-ager, to conservative democratic, to what I do now... Changing who I am from label to label to becoming more and more un-label-able... though I am sure some people out there feel like they could try.

The reason is, I am open to change. That is the beauty of my freedom of choice as I live authentically.

I wrote the post because I was excited about the discovery of finding a label (unschooler) that had created a structure in my life that would tumble if I took the label away. This discovery was exciting for me and inspired me to create the Authentic Family Living community. A label may be a title, but a title does not always a label make, right?

I practice to be honest to everyone (including you) who asks what I love, which changes moment to moment, sometimes hour to hour or decade to decade.

Who would you be without your labels? Who is the self? Who am I?
Yes, deep and profound, and yet, the answer is there... actively moving, blowing in the wind...

Thank you for connecting and asking me your beautiful questions. It was just what I wanted to hear...

smiles and joy,


Angie Goodloe said...

This is my first visit to your blog and I just wanted to say I love your definition of authentic!
As a mom of 2 babies I am always working to live my life authentically, in the present, and passionately.
Some moms lose themselves in the label of 'mother'- somewhat loosing touch.
Your writing pulled me in, great post!

Rain Fordyce said...

Thank you Angie,
I appreciate your kind comment!

Yes, I agree... many women lose themselves in "mother" when it is a verb, not a static structure. Though I deeply understand... it is such a gift, it is a challenge to let it go...

I hope you will join us over at our community at and share your blog and passion!

Smiles and joy,