Creativity and Spiritual India

Posts tagged “Author

Moments in between

In our lives, there are moments in between the main bits. These moments are like spaces between chapters–interludes. They’re great times for reflection.

Of course there are the main chapters of our lives: times of great action and involvement, when we are greatly connected with particular places and people. These chapters are full of lessons, challenges, and the deepening of connections with ourselves and others. Like little spirals within larger arcs, we live wee chapters within larger ones. A small chapter might be growing accustomed to a new home, a large chapter could be raising a child, or making a career. Each chapter has its own beginning, middle and end.

Then there are the spaces in between.

Like the top of a jump.

In these moments, we may take a step back from the heat of the moment to reflect on the larger story unfolding around and within us. These times are very valuable. They’re also wistful, introspective, introverted, and reflective opportunities.

These moments come while traveling, while I’ve left somewhere, but are not yet at our destination. I don’t mean that hectic time of trying to get on a bus, train or airplane, but the time when I am already onboard. My obligations in the place I was just in are concluded or on hold, and I have not yet arrived in the place I am going. In this time in between, there is a great opportunity for introspection and reflection. This song exists, for me, in a space like that. It was made by my good friend Keli Marks, and I hope you like it too.

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The ultimate high-tech ultra futuristic revelation revealed!!!!!

After thousands of years of research into nutrition and stuff, and after rifling through heaps of contradictory opinions, the world’s bestest scientists have reached a consensus. There are only two kinds of food: weird tasting and non-weird tasting.
In popular parlance, weird tasting food is called, “healthy food,” and non-weird tasting food is called, “tasty food.”
Some argue that if one possesses the willpower, one should only eat weird food. Bitter, intense, sour!!
Others say no! To enjoy a happy life–albeit short and full of health problems–one should eat only non-weird food.Tasty, fatty, salty!!
The truth is, as the latest super-scientific studies have revealed, that for optimal mental, physical, primal, causal, nasal, dental and social health, a wise one will eat a mix of weird and non-weird food.
‘What?’ cry the weird-food advocates. ‘What is the harm in eating only healthy food?’
Well, my theoretical friend, the problems are twofold. First, a person may become twisted and bitter by this diet, growing to hate those who have ‘fallen to the platform of eating non-weird food.’ Such a person may withdraw from society, begin muttering to themselves and start a two or even one person cult in some exotic location.
‘That’s not me!’ you say. ‘I’ll never abandon my community!’
And well you shouldn’t. Well alright. But here’s the clincher: it’s well-known that if a person eats only ultra-healthy food, they will in the course of time develop superpowers.
‘That’s great!’ you say.
Great in comic books and movies, yes. Super strength, super memory. What could go wrong? But imagine if you were suddenly–or over the course of say a two-year diet regime–five times stronger than you are now. You would be like a weapon. Shaking hands with someone could land you in jail, hugging your friend could kill him. Having a great memory sounds fantastic, but what if you could remember every single detail of everything that ever happened to you in your entire life and it was in your brain all the time all the all the time at the foremost tip of your consciousness and it was impossible to get rid of?!
?!
‘Well, that would be bad.’
Yes.
On the other hand, if a person does not eat any weird food at all, they turn into a slug and get eaten by enormous birds.
Thus a balanced diet is optimal.
Here ends my brief explanation of the latest scientific findings regarding nutrition and lifestyle. I hope this is been helpful to you.

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Creativity is misnamed

At first glance, it would seem that we create fiction with our imaginations. This is particularly obvious with fantasy or science fiction stories, where there are worlds, characters and abilities not seen in real life (unless you are a magician or super-hero). But really, all fiction is a creation of our imaginations. Right? What to speak of just fiction, we are creative in engineering, business, teaching… everywhere. Right?
No human has ever been creative. Not really.
Here’s the thing: to create is to bring something into existence, but we just recombine things. Think about it: a visual artist’s rendering of a fantastic world is based on the real world. Their far-out floating mountains are like real mountains, but floating. You know, like stuff floats in water. You’ve seen that, right? A flying, fire-breathing dragon is a combination of a few ideas–I’d say a serpent, a bat and fire–all combined together and scaled up. A science fiction author might place her story on another planet, where there is all water and no land. What has she created? A planet, like the one we walk on, but distant and covered with water. We have oceans here, so she conceived of that planet having only oceans. What has she created from scratch?
If an author is not writing science fiction or fantasy, their setting is not so obviously imagined. If a story set in Florence, Italy, is to be convincing, the author really ought to spend some time there getting the setting right. Their ‘creativity’ in that case is to present Florence with accuracy and flare. But what did they really create?
‘Creativity’ is really a particular recombination of existing elements, just like making a building out of stone, metal and so on. The ingredients are all there already; we’re just putting it together in different ways.
When we write about characters who are aliens or alien-like in their views, we base them on people in this world. We may employ different character traits that we’ve seen, but in a combination that we’ve never known in a single person. Like a really jolly, funny hermaphrodite who happens to be a serial killer. An odd combination to be sure, but really just combining existing things. Or a person who likes brussels sprouts, cricket, moto-derbies and romance novels.
Mind you, if someone wants to call this innovative recombination of things ‘creativity,’ hey, that’s fine with me. Most words just have the meanings we give them. To be sure, it is an amazing and mystical ability. How and why would such an ability evolve? It is beyond the understanding of modern science that we should express ourselves in such diverse and imaginative ways. I find this ‘creativity’ to be a tool to understand myself and the world, and to try to share with others what I am thinking and feeling. By making a world with characters and envisioning their struggles and realizations in the course of a story, I feel I can share with others a little bit of what my ideals and dreams are. It’s an inspiring way to connect with and appreciate the world and cosmos that we find ourselves in, and maybe even learn something of its source. So although we don’t create anything new, thank God for creativity!

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