The veneer on a piece of furniture can appear in many ways. It can be layers of paint, different color of stain, all of it possibly peeling. There can even be gashes and dent to the wood underneath.
The wood underneath is the truth and it’s rarely seen. It’s the heart of the matter and how the piece of furniture looked at its founding; it’s construction done by the carpenter’s hand. I love watching it progress, drinking in the smell of the wood.
When I look at any piece of furniture that has been stained or painted, I always wonder what the grain of the wood looks like underneath and what type of wood it is. Then I wonder who built it, the year it was built and for whom.
All of our social media; Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, on and on, show only the veneer of humans. We are all projecting a public image that we want others to think is true. It’s the image that we are comfortable having others see. It is the truth regarding how we express ourselves verbally but it’s partial because we’re not in the room physically present with each other. It serves to protect our deepest emotions and events of our lives from being too visible, too vulnerable as our bodies are visible. Maybe we are aligning with a group that “fixes” all that was wrong with our mother or father instead of aligning with our true selves in group settings.
I actually accept that about others. The reason being…underneath we are all innocent children that have had to learn to cope in certain family dynamics and fundamental societal expectations where most of the time, no one asked us what we wanted or how we felt. They just told us what we should do to fit in and be liked. Knowing and obeying those parameters helped us survive and maybe kept us alive. So we view that compromise as fundamentally good. But it’s not. It is surviving, not thriving. That’s how the veneer starts. Most of the veneer comes from religion, state schools, and our family.
It’s something to keep in mind when you communicate on social media. There is no way you’re getting an authentic picture of a person on any of those sites. We all cling to religions, political parties and value systems that we feel emotionally comfortable with culturally. That doesn’t mean that a person who is opposite of you doesn’t have a good heart or a stable mind. It’s amazing how convinced we can be of how right we are when we surround ourselves with people who agree with us.
It’s not about a group as right or wrong. It’s about caring to know who people really are underneath, listening, and being authentic ourselves. We’re called to love-not to judge…anyone…ever…for any reason.