Naked on the Street at Dawn
I took this photo moments ago. I had tried taking the photo looking out my dining room window from which I had noticed the fire-red sky. The image had too many reflections and was too poor for my collection. So, without thinking too much about it, I ran out of the house wearing nothing but slippers, down the street to find an opening so that I could catch the approach of dawn on the horizon. It was cold out -18C as I stood a ways down our street taking a few photos. Needless to say, I then hurried back to the house and the warmth within it. It was only about ten minutes later when a truck drove by that I realised just what I had done. I was too far from the house to escape notice if that truck would have appeared while I was taking this photo. I would have been seen, stark naked with a camera in hand, in a small prairie town. I really do have to think before I act.
So, what is it that had me take such a thoughtless risk? It was a thoughtless risk as the ripples would have overwhelmed both my wife and myself in this small community if I had been caught naked on the street this cold, winter morning. My sanity would become the first issue as obviously no sane person would be out naked in this winter weather taking photos of dawn on the streets of town. Then, there would be the shame that would chase my wife throughout all her associations in the town as the wife of a crazy man. And should I pass muster as sane, there would likely be legal issues to be dealt with, or at the least, an angry village that would want me – us – gone.
Each of us has a shadow, or perhaps more correctly, shadows within us. We can sense their presence once we open the mind to the possibility that we are more than what our ego tells us we are. These shadowy presences contain both dark aspects of our whole self, as well as the light aspects. Another word for these shadows is “archetypes.” Popular literature talks to us about these archetypes as king, lover, magician, lover, jester (fool), queen, harlot, and so many more. For each of these shadow aspects such as Great Mother and Great Father, there are both dark and light faces. An example is the Great Father which is associated with God, with his dark face being Satan. Buried in our shadows are our unlived and denied aspects of ourselves. We all have our saintly sides and our sinful sides, our inhibited and uninhibited sides. And it is there that perhaps I can find an answer to the question “Why?”
Another thought for me to consider: how do I manage to choose the “right” moment in time to risk these type of exposures, that brief intersect in time when all will be private allowing me to accomplish these unknown objectives?