“Tell your friend a lie. If he keeps it secret, then tell him the truth.” ~ Proverb

silenzio What is it about identity that makes it so sacred? What is it that makes “being known” so fearful and obtrusive to our privacy? Why do we insist on “you don’t know shit about me”? Why do people say “I know you” with conceit? And why are we often find ourselves defensive when someone says that to us?

I once had a friend who was so possessive with his secrets that it filled him with dismay knowing that I kept very little to myself. He said something about “devaluing my identity” since everybody has a piece of it. I rolled my eyes at that. I guess I wasn’t so valuable for him then.

And what is it about wedding invitations in Saudi where the groom’s name is mentioned, and not the bride? Wedding invites in Saudi usually say something like “Fulan bin Fulan is to be married to the daughter of Fulan bin Fulan.”

Furthermore, why is the bride in Islamic wedding ceremony never asked her opinion? Why is it necessary for the Wali to speak on her behalf? Isn’t marriage a business between man and woman, not between man and the woman’s father?

Now, back to that thing about being known, yes, so I do realize that there is a matter of safety in keeping parts of our identity mysterious. But I’m talking about intimate relationships. The stuff we have with our parents and lovers and spouses and children. Why do we keep secrets from the people we love? Why the inherent fear that people would take advantage of our secrets in doing us harm?

Is it just so vulgar to have our secrets exposed, our movements predicted and our dreams obvious?

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