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When authenticity isn’t so authentic

Authenticity. It’s a verifiable trait that you can find in the rarest corners of the internet, where the masses aren’t catered to with “false-authenticity” by influencers, celebrities and bloggers alike. This special brand of openness is usually met with two outcomes: 1. Acceptance that transcends the average hypocrisy or 2. People criticize with no thought to their own hypocrisy. So what’s the solution? Do we keep our personal lives and thoughts out of the equation? Or is authenticity what we really need?

The idea that authenticity should be automatically given seems to be universal, but when the response to such authenticity is negative, why bother? Here’s why: in Exodus 25:10, we read about the construction of the Ark of the Covenant.  “Cover it with pure gold—from the inside and the outside you shall cover it.” The reason for covering the Ark of the Covenant inside with gold wasn’t to make it more ornate. It was to prove that the inside matched the outside in an authentic way. This authenticity, this show of faith, takes a lot of courage and vulnerability when applied to all of us. When we choose to open up to someone, we want the inside of us to look like the outside, for the most part. We want to be accepted for who we are, and this is need for “likes” comes in. It all boils down to one word: acceptance.

With the wave of authenticity posts showing up on Instagram, there is this “likes for love” mentality we come across. Revealing our true selves and exposing ourselves to the world is daunting; some may think it’s careless. Posing for the camera and then backtracking to say “well, this is what was actually going on” may seem like lies to some, only promoting our own agendas for more likes, more views, more fame. But if there was ever a time to be truly authentic, in a world full of personalities who dominate our feeds with false authenticity and the idea of “reality” tv, it’s now. If there was ever a time to share the fact that we are hurting people in a strange world that sometimes makes no sense, it’s now. If there was ever a time to reach beyond our social media and be authentic with ourselves and everyone else, it’s definitely now.