Function

16 06 2011

Purpose is the only thing there is.

Sometimes I think that creativity exists in people as their only tool to uncover the secrets to their lives.  That is, whatever you’re driven to do is the correct path for you to take because the unknowable force that binds it all together is the source of creativity, and it reveals itself to you in tiny increments that you can take up only as quickly as you can create at a wholly intuitive level.  So when something resonates for you, let loose and give yourself to it as best you can.  Conversely, I suppose, if something isn’t your cup of tea, it’s just as well that you avoid it, because it’s nothing you need to propel yourself forward at this moment.

Other times, I take stock of what this philosophy has gotten me and I become a little disheartened.  It’s not that I don’t appreciate the exploration or think that my life should be better (or worse).  It’s that it still seems to fill my life up with stuff and one thing I am not so great at is organization—so I’m left with all kinds of attempts strewn at my feet and I can hardly imagine what must be in there.  I’ve got a lot of musical instruments, all of which I know how to play a little.  I’ve always been very drawn to music, but there’s always a point where I am flustered by it and put it all away for months at a time.  And I’ve got loads of photographs now, and I still can’t really think of a reasonable filing system by which I can keep track of what I’m trying to do.  Of course, the fact that I don’t know what I’m trying to do probably makes it difficult to devise a reasonable filing system.

And there’s the writing.  I’ve been awful at writing lately—both prolifically and qualitatively—but when I write, I want to keep the things in some kind of order so I can revisit and rehash as is appropriate.  But I have so many categories, and so many folders now.  This is partially why I started this blog.  I wanted a place where tags and categories would help me keep track of my mind as well as give me a platform to improve as a writer.  But I stopped tagging or categorizing long ago, and I’ve been fearful more than once that I’m writing on a topic I’ve visited before and just don’t remember.  So I’m probably annoying any readers this blog may have, but that’s neither here nor there.  It’s the nature of the mind, to visit and revisit topics of interest to it, changing its ideas about them slowly over time.

So I’m just trying to do what I should be doing, but it’s not doing anything too constructive, I don’t think.  I don’t see it becoming constructive, either—it’s all just stuff lying around me, being there, no monuments, no signposts, just a mess.  And it makes me think about purpose.

Because in the end, you aren’t really anything but your function.  What you do is all that you are.  Even though you’re an absolutely unbelievable organization of atoms working together to give you an opportunity to be alive, you’re actually nothing but what you make this organization do.  These atoms will disorganize, and they’ll go on to be other things, and they’ll change their own natures along the way, and the control that you once thought you had will disintegrate along with them.  And that’s fine.  But what did you accomplish while you still had them working with you?

What’s a broom for?  If you think it’s for sweeping, then what if you are trapped in a room with a broom and you use the handle to break the window, to give you freedom?  Function shifts, and you can change your function.  You just have to use your will and your creativity.

I don’t know what I am, and I don’t know what you are.

I don’t feel right when I’m making money and I don’t feel right when I’m not.  I don’t feel right when I’m avoiding being sociable and I don’t feel right trying to have fun.  I like talking to people about their fears or their thoughts about life.  I like doing little things that people appreciate.  Otherwise, I feel useless.  It’s strange to know that you only feel good when you’re choosing to be a tool.  That you feel best when you accept that you don’t have a real drive in life and that you don’t really function unless you’re making it a little better or easier for someone else.  I have to admit that I still really wish I envisioned a function I really desired to become.

That last paragraph was for me, obviously.  I’m leaving it in there.  Just because I hope to come back across it one day, lack of organization be damned, and realize that things have changed for the better.

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Creativity/Creation

10 06 2011

I was watching Bjork’s performance at the Royal Opera House this morning, and admiring her stunning creativity across disciplines—I’ve always held her music, her words, and her vocal acumen in the highest of regard, but her staging and willingness to trust in collaboration are also impressive to behold—when I started to feel a thought.  Which is a heck of a thing to do, by the way, feeling a thought.  Good luck with it.  You aren’t thinking, you’re just appreciating from that zone in which you’ve read your heart should be, when suddenly you’re thinking, only you didn’t mean to start thinking.  But bam, you have an idea, and it didn’t come from your brain.

And what I was think-feeling was this:  Love is Creation.  Creation is Love.

This was a confusing feely-thinky for me, but since it didn’t really come from my brain, I decided to entertain it.  At first, I only liked it because I’ve always had a problem with love.  I know that there are people, animals, and things for which I feel severe and sincere care, and I’ve been happy to consider that love, even if I couldn’t define the parameters of such a love.  And I’ve always been a little dismayed to see how widely varying people’s ideas of romantic love is, because if we can’t agree as to the purpose and scope of a particular feeling, then it’s not an institution—that is, it isn’t a single thing known by all who experience it—and there’s no sense to saying that we are in love, because we’re really just in two loves that intersect unreliably and aren’t necessarily meaningful to one another.

But Love is Creation.  Love is any product of the use of our vast imaginations.  It’s how we build our entire world.  An idea becomes important enough to manifest, and its manifestation is a labor built entirely upon the beauty we felt in the idea.  I was thinking about this when Bjork began “All is Full of Love,” and for once, the obviousness of the situation wasn’t lost on me.  I glanced out the window, and I saw that it was an idea:  to at once shield and to permit commingling.  To separate and to keep unbroken.  It’s a beautiful idea; a form of love.

There are those of you who think I’ve really gone off the hippie-drippy deep end, and to those of you who do, I say this:  I hope you will still hang out with me when I come to town, Allison.  And you may think I’m crazy, but you’re going to agree with me one day.

Creation is Love.  Also, destruction is love, in that an idea comes to pass.  Every idea comes from a wish, a need, and enacting is always leads to purpose, even if it’s hidden from you at first. People are just strings with a lot of kinks, and everything they think and do is an effort to straighten themselves out.  Sometimes, they tie themselves in more knots, but those knots will eventually come out, just like all the ones that already exist.  It just takes effort.  It just takes more ideas and more doing.  Which is all that creation is.  And everything you do to bring yourself to that loose, carefree, complication-less state is love.

I’ll end with a Beck lyric from the album One Foot in the Grave, which I think is a pretty remarkable although not-so-obvious champion of this Creation-is-Love idea.  If you haven’t hear it, you should give it a shot.  And don’t worry about liking it or paying attention to it.  It does its work subtly.  To wit:

go where you want to
do the things you feel
walk around with a broken leg
and a hundred dollar bill