"Leave a small child alone with some dolls and see how quickly they start to animate and create stories with them. Leave them with some blank paper and some colours and see how quickly a picture is created. Creativity is the fulfilment of Being." Swifty Flame-Anderson
Some time ago, when my daughters were a little younger than they are now, I used to find myself spending a quite significant amount of my disposable income on paper, drawing pads, crayons, coloured felt-tip pens, glitter, paints, glue and such like.
On many occasions, I would ask one of my daughters what it was she was drawing and be pleasantly surprised by the simple and innocent answer, "Nothing, I am just colouring in." Now, imagine for a moment that I was what we might politely call a 'pushy parent'. I might react something like this:-
"Just colouring in! That will never do! We can't have you just colouring in. You won't make a career out of colouring in. Right! Here are some books on advanced techniques in fine art. Where did I put that Yellow Pages? Art tutors. Art tutors ...."
"But I'm only three. I really like colouring in." A tear begins to form.
"It is better to create than to learn! Creating is the essence of life." Julius Caesar
Fast forward a few years and just yesterday I found myself interacting on one of the groups on the social network Facebook. In this group various discussions take place. Staring at the screen, my mind went a little blank and then suddenly a large chunk of writing appeared, as if by magic, in one of the comment spaces. I did not feel inclined to read the several paragraphs, not because they were any more or less worthy than any other bunch of thoughts, but because in that moment it struck me that it didn't really matter what was thought or written.
One moment there was a white space, the next moment it was filled. Obviously the writer was interested in what he had written or he would not have done so. It really doesn't matter much whether I read it or not. There was no question of whether what he had written was right or wrong, good or bad etc. There it was, filling the space that once was blank. A brand new creation.
Occasionally someone asks me, "Hey, Pete, if, as you maintain, you do not believe in all this stuff that you write or publish, then why the hell do you carry on churning it out? Why bother producing this massive website and posting stuff from it on Facebook?"
No particular reason. Life is an infinite blank canvas. I'm just doing some colouring in. Care to join me? Pass me the red, will you?
"My life is a creative act - like a painting, or a concerto." Ram Dass
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