For those of you visiting this site in browsers other than Safari, I feel your pain. I recently viewed this site on another machine and much of the beauty is lost to some formatting glitches. I hope to have those fixed in the next while.
I’m happy with how often I seem to be drawn here to post. It comes and goes… but there are times this web canvas is an attractive forum for thought. When I’m in deeper trouble, I tend to be more introspective and less ends up here. I turn to my sketchpad, my personal thought-bucket. The thoughts trickle back into public places once I’ve had a “Eureka!” moment, or when I can’t hold it in any longer.
This is one of those times.
I am working out something within me that seems to nag whenever I reach a period of stability. Somehow, right now, I have more passion and creativity; but it’s stagnated, dirty water in a puddle: like I have words but nothing to say. I am more prepared than ever before to burst into what I want to do, but I’m creating less than any previous period. Why?
I feel trapped by stability.
For me, freedom is a Very Big Thing™. Keeping my options open falls above engagement in my subconscious reflexes. Options give me the illusion of control.
Bizarrely, and – this is where I’m wanting to understand myself – I pair aloofness with responsibility. I frequently bind myself to roles and ways of thinking that negatively cut down the emotional and creative side, in the name of duty – and in the name of power: power to keep my options open.
In the end I bind myself twice – to self-imposed responsibilities and exile from true engagement.
That’s why I turn to writing, sketching, drawing. Not usually here, public like this – but writing helps me work out my ideas, just like photography & music help me work out my emotions. I’ve been taught how to listen to my internal themes to avoid the siren call of distraction, and when something’s up my gut pulls me to express it so I can work things out.
And this writing, this expression is the art. It helps me remember: I am not bound to freedom. I am free so that I can live life fully – to create, engage, be broken and re-create. That, to be bound to things worth holding is not a cage.
Don’t ask yourself what the world needs. Ask yourself what makes you come alive and then go do that. Because what the world needs is people who have come alive.
— Dr. Howard Thurman
[updated to work out the 3AM writing delirium]