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Friday, October 30, 2020

Your Masterpiece

What subject has retained its allure for you for as long as you can recall? And what have been your most recent discoveries reflecting on that subject? 

Creativity - in all its manifestations - is endlessly fascinating to me. I'm unable to count the number of books I've read, lectures I've listened to, conversations I've had about creativity. Each time I think I've exhausted the subject, a new discovery awaits. The only certainty that has remained with me is an elegant definition of creativity I heard many years ago:  Novel associations that are useful.

I believe everyone has the capacity to be creative. But my experience has shown me that many people frequently choose to ignore creative impulses. Recently, whenever I think I might be succumbing to this impulse, I gently remind myself to welcome my muse. I started using this simple technique soon after beginning to suspect that the people who history venerates - be they composers, authors, visual artists - are likely the same people highly attuned to their muse, i.e. they follow most, if not all, of their creative impulses, wherever those impulses lead. Consider for a moment: Not everything any revered artist - alive or dead - creates is of equal merit. But those folks keep creating, putting their creations in the world anyway. The people many of us celebrate for their creativity know well that others will be the judge of what is worth remembering. 

How attuned are you to your muse? In other words, are you more inclined to ignore creative impulses or follow them wherever they lead? Put aside the fact that you, like me, are not "known" for your creative output. Just live in that question for a moment. I've discovered that when I'm in a black hole with thoughts about giving up a creative endeavor, reminding myself to pay closer attention to the muse helps me climb out. Call my or your impulse to create whatever suits you. But don't ignore it; your masterpiece is closer than you think.      

  

6 comments:

  1. It’s fun to see what creative endeavors you take on next!

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    1. Thanks sweetie. A big reason I have persisted over the years - despite my lack of notoriety - is because I know I'm happier when I create. And when I'm happier, I'm nicer to be around and better to people I love deeply, like you.

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  2. I have to admit, that as much as I would like to believe that there is creativity in me, I am not so sure. So, I have to agree with you and say that I am not known for my creativity. Aside from a clay ashtray or a 'macaroni-on-paper' something or other during my childhood, I don't consider myself to be very creative. But, I will say, and it may or not be something that answers your question, I was part of creating 2 beautiful children who are now parents to 3 beautiful grandsons. And, yes, I realize that this is probably every parents response, but it does allow me to say that I have been creative. Now where did I put that box of pasta?

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    1. RRGRMG; I'll stand by what I said in my post, i.e. creativity is a trait we all share. That doesn't mean everyone makes their creativity manifest but, in my experience, that is more about how many people (perhaps including you) learn to ignore the creative impulse, especially early in life when it's freshest. And, people ignore that impulse for reasons that are as varied as people are. Thanks for you comment and please pass the macaroni.

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  3. I can relate to the idea of creativity and impulse to make something out of seemingly nothing but a notion! In a recent AARP interview cover story with Bruce Springsteen on his life, work and newest album and documentary, "Letter to You" he revealed what is really at the center of his song writing and performing. It's the germ of an idea that won't leave you alone and the need to give it tangible shape. Many years ago I came across a quote which I'm just paraphrasing. "Many are called, few are chosen, and fewer answer." Always answer.

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    1. Steve; Four comments from you in one day; I hit the jackpot! Thanks for that. And, I love that quote and agree with your sentiment, i.e. always answer.

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