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how a protean self is not duplicitous
September 25, 2009


One outcome of a protean self, relative to a secure openness toward one’s plural way of being, is that genuine appearances of contradiction may represent not a hidden dishonesty or duplicity, but a complex candor and self-acceptance in a spirit of growth relative to complex perceptibility and an openness of reflected learning that is presumed to be neverending and that grows from being faced with one’s contradictions.

But a complex self can be difficult for others, especially younger persons who experience complex candor as an apparent lack of self-consciousness and/or untrustworthy duplicity.

Yes, contradictions can “betray” an other’s need for easily-accessible coherence. But what fun learning about multifacetedness can be (especially for the multifaceted one!), even working through “contradictions” with others not as a problem to be managed, but as opportunities for learning together, even chancing a potentially-creative interplay of each other’s facets, since a troubled other may in reality be more complex than s/he can comprehend (so s/he suppresses the reality of his/her own complexity) because s/he’s perhaps afraid of being left to manage it alone (e.g., an adult that was commonly a “latchkey child” or latchkey teen).

Yea, dance of life, I say.