The first question:
Repression has become an automatic reaction in our bodies and minds which we do not even recognize or want to change any more. How can we learn to tell between a false image and a real one in ourselves?
Many things have to be understood. One: all your faces are false; you do not have any real face. That is why the question arises over which is false and which is real. If you have the real, you know. Then the question never arises. All the faces are unreal, false, so you do not have any comparisons to make. You do not know the real – that is the difficulty. You have not seen the real, and the real is not seen naturally; much effort is needed to find it.
In Zen they say that the real is the original face – the face you had before your birth and the face you will have after your death. That means that all the faces in life, so-called life, are false. How to find out what is the real face? You will have to go back to before your birth. That is the only way to find the real face, because the moment you are born you have started being false. You have started being false because it pays to be false.
The child is born, and he has started to be a politician. The moment he is related to the world, to the parents, to the family, he is in politics. Now he has to take care about his faces. He will smile as a bribery. He will try to find out in what ways he should behave so that he is accepted more, loved more, appreciated more. And sooner or later the child will find out what is condemned by the parents, by the family, and he will start repressing it. Then the false has entered.
So all the faces you have are false. Do not try to find out the real one among your present faces. They are all false, similarly false. They are useful – that is why they have been adopted – utilitarian, but not true. And the deepest deception is that whenever you become aware that your faces are false, you will create another face which you will think is the real.
For example, a person who lives an ordinary life, in an ordinary world, with a business, a family, comes to realize the whole of his falseness, the whole inauthenticity of his life, so he renounces it. He becomes a sannyasin and leaves the world, and he may be thinking that now the face is real. It is again a false face. It has been adopted as a reaction to other faces, and with a reaction you can never get to the real. By reacting to a false face you will create another false face. So what is to be done?