The good news for Harvey Weinstein
Posted by Simon Parke, 01 November 2017, 3.12pm
There’s a man on the phone to his wife.
He’s got car trouble and he needs to be somewhere.
‘Bit of car trouble.’
‘Acting all sluggish.’
‘It just won’t start.’
‘It was OK last night.’
‘I think the spark plugs maybe damp.’
‘It seems unlikely.’
‘It’s just a hunch.’
‘Well, I’ll call the AA…where’s the car.’
‘It’s in the river.’
As the Harvey Weinstein story reminds us, truth is often a slow and difficult arrival whether in Hollywood, in Westminster or in ourselves.
We tell a story about ourselves which may have very little to do with the truth; but which we’re determined to stick with, and will stick with…until the wheels come off.
It’s not easy being truthful about ourselves, because most of the time we don’t feel safe enough to reveal anything.
So we stay with the persona.
‘I’m very happily married’ said a woman to me once. It was her opening line, her opening declaration about herself.
It proved to be the precise opposite of the truth, once she felt safe to dismantle the public narrative.
And we spent the next few months reflecting on her obsession with a previous lover whom she still wanted to be with very much; and her trapped feelings concerning the marriage she was in presently.
The truth of ourselves is arrived at slowly, for it’s a difficult dismantling.
But the truth is, almost nothing of what I would have said about myself at the age of twenty-five would have been true.
It was a largely unexamined concoction of attitudes…as I trained for the priesthood.
(A training which did nothing to examine those attitudes.)
And because the personality is a mental construct, when we blindly identify with it, we have no sure ground.
Some get to the truth in crisis, out of desperation, like the man with the car in the river.
He just had to be honest, no choice.
That’s probably my story too.
Weinstein gets there by being caught out and exposed, a persona shot down in flames.
Painful, but healing, like the surgeon’s knife.
But the better way for us all is safety.
We all need safe places in life, safe people, where we can peel away the various layers of the glorious human onion.
Here’s to the unfolding, dismantling, processing, discovering you.
And to safe places along the way…