Inspiration of the day – my friend blogged about artist Merce Cunningham who passed away, and it highlights several artists who helped re-define what art is. My favorite part is the last sentence, but had to quote the entire section –
It was their relationship of the creative life to all life that has drawn me into their work. They would focus on bringing the creative process into what are often times considered “non art” activities….they would have festivities in a moment’s notice, carry with them a feeling of always creating something, of everyday adventures. They believed in living out loud in front of others so the world would wake up and see that the smallest things in life can be a celebration.
That is how I choose to honor Merce, to continue to live my own life with that kind of imagination and authenticity, and to encourage others to do the same. We are ALL artists, constantly creating. No matter what our medium..even if we don’t have a definable medium…it’s the way in which we author our lives that is so important. Art is not to dazzle others as M.C. Richards, a contemporary and friend of Merce, once said. “It is to reveal the secrets of our hearts so that others seeing that witness, will have the courage to reveal the secrets of their own hearts.”
This is the path I’ve been on as well – while I’ve always loved doing creative things, this way of looking at art, how we live, and how we express who we are really started at Burning Man for me. I was always drawn to it, but never found it in such abundance until then. And I’m still struggling to do this, as lately it seems not much that I do is very creative. Lately I’ve been absorbing inspiration, but it’s just kinda sitting there building up. But to figure out exactly how to put this inspiration and energy to best use is challenging, and I feel like there’s never enough time in the day.
However her post reinforced in me that it’s a 24-7 thing, even if I’m not creating a tangible piece of art. I just need to remember that. And when we are tapped into that realization, and live with intention, I think that’s being in the flow.
ETA: Excellent timing, universe… a friend just linked to this on facebook. Great video, but stay for the end credits and story!!
The past week has also had an emotional journey. A man went missing, and I followed the story on facebook as I know someone who is a close friend of his. As I reposted messages from friends and family, asking for prayers or help with the search party in California, I learned a little about him and his life. But the message that touched me was one that was related to his mother through a psychic.
If you do not generally believe in such things, I dare you to just suspend those thoughts and listen to the message. Just for a moment think about what it would mean to embrace it and make it part of our lives.
Elias says repeatedly that what happened was like an unfortunate accident. It shouldn’t have happened. The person involved needs compassion.
Elias is adamant that he wants everyone to react with love and compassion. He wants a circle of people, whoever is capable, to hold space at the same time every day for compassion meditation and to let him know what time that will be so that he can join us.
He does not want so much energy put on what happened. Put energy into love and compassion. People are digging, he says, seeking with too much frustration to find out what happened. Surrender and allow it to be revealed. Taking action is good, but don’t focus too much on seeking.
He says that this whole event is a lesson. He wants us to learn the lesson! If we focus on the wrong things we may not learn the lesson.
He is grateful that I am open to allowing this lesson to be learned. He wants us to show love for all – not just him. And to have no vindictiveness. He wants there to be complete forgiveness.
Elias wants us to proceed with compassion every step of the way.
Emotions need to be released, to be honored and allow them to flow through like a stream, but don’t let them constrict you. So the key is to honor your emotions without holding them inside.
He wants to raise the vibration. Use less intellect. Keep returning to the love or we will miss the lesson. The lesson is about love.
(excerpts – for full text see here)
At a time where you can imagine his friends and family are frantically searching for him, hoping he is still alive, full of fear… His main message is of love and compassion, not for him but for those who did this to him.
I know most of us hold grudges for far less serious offenses.
I don’t know if I can have love for those who did this, but looking at the faces of three men arrested in association with this case, I tried to hold compassion. I wondered what happened in their life that led them to where they are today. Was it an accident? Or, had they been hurt so badly that they only know how to hurt others? Were they even the ones who did it?
Lyrics from a song by Kristin Hoffmann called “No Love” run through my head – she ponders what hell someone went through to get to the point where they abuse (or do worse) to someone else. “there`s no right or wrong to decide just the cause and effect of life”.
The mystery of Elias’ disappearance is still unsolved. Police are treating it as a homicide although his body has not been found. While I hope anyone found guilty in the investigation is charged and serves an appropriate sentence, the message of being open to all possibilities has stuck with me.
Elias (through the transmission) asked his mother to choose a Sufi poem, and she shared the following.
A poem of Hafiz
Can forgive the past
It starts singing.
When the violin can stop worrying
About the future
You will become
Such a drunk laughing nuisance
Will then lean down
And start combing you into
When the violin can forgive
Every wound caused by
The heart starts
So yeah. The dance continues. Love and compassion. Creativity and authenticity. Intention and celebration. Heavy thoughts for a Monday, but then Mondays when you are stuck somewhere that is the opposite of many of those things need this sometimes.
I may have posted this quote before, but want to post it again… and upon doing so I realize that “art” (the kind of art discussed up top) could replace the word “faith”. I’m trying to embrace this fully – as well as exploit it as a reference that nowhere does “clean house” or “laundry” appear on the list… 😛
This is my living faith, an active faith, a faith of verbs:
to question, explore, experiment, experience, walk, run, dance, play, eat, love, learn, dare, taste, touch, smell, listen, argue, speak, write, read, draw, provoke, emote, scream, sin, repent, cry, kneel, pray, bow, rise, stand, look, laugh, cajole, create, confront, confound, walk back, walk forward, circle, hide, and seek.
To seek: to embrace the questions, be wary of answers.
~Terry Tempest Williams
And so I leave you with this tribute to the lives of those who affect us, and may we remember that how we live each day is the message we’ll leave behind us as well.