If your thoughts automatically converted to an actual slap in the face, or, an all-in, don’t-care-who-is-watching hug, would you be surrounded by friends, or would you be locked in solitary confinement for assault?
We woke up this morning in the midst of a revolution. It is a quiet rebellion that has been evolving for decades. For those of us caught mid-stride in the struggle, it is sometimes hard to see the forest for the trees, because this revolution is an inner conflict.
We know that mental health crises and loneliness are pandemics in our culture. However, I believe that there is a third pandemic, one that has caused confusion of epic proportions. It is what I would term as a crisis of creativity. It may, in real life, be the cause of the whole tragic else.
The roots of this pandemic lie in disenchantment. Those of us who have chosen to question the status quo, or for those of us who have turned our focus from the institutions whose leaders have told us where to stand, what to say, and what to believe – those of us who find ourselves cut adrift from the conventional moorings that once served to anchor its people in a churning sea – we are the ones feeling this crisis.
We may not be aware of what is happening. We may or may not feel like we have invited this crisis. Regardless of our resistance, we find ourselves in transitional times. Times in which we need our creativity more than ever.
One of the most interesting things about human nature is our ability to know what we don’t want but not know what we do want. And even if we choose, many times, we have second thoughts about that choice. Why is that? Choice can be scary. It can be uncomfortable.
An honest perusal of our inner landscape would have us admit that it is easier to have someone else try and fail at something – to have them work out the basics – before we take up the task.
If mental health issues, loneliness, and lack of creativity are symptoms of a society in crisis, what could be the cause? I offer that our slow and steady movement away from the organized, hierarchical institutions that served as the guide for our personal spirituality is the major cause of this crisis.
An inner landscape made up of what it isn’t, isn’t a landscape at all. There are no navigation points. There is no map for the mountains and valleys. No trees and streams and grassy meadows and lazy rivers…no moss-covered sunshine-dappled glens that delight the weary traveller. No bright blue sky. No lighthouses or spotlights or Borealis or Dog Star to guide us.
It is like we woke up this morning only to find ourselves in the Bermuda Triangle, without a compass that reads true north. The landscape shifted and became indistinguishable while we were busy being busy.
I believe that this is a natural movement that has turned into a revolution. It can be what is termed as a dark night of the soul, as Thomas Moore describes it, a transitional time when we must learn to navigate new terrain and sail in new waters.
Transition is an aspect of our shared humanity. Humanity, by our very nature, must respond to this deepening of awareness.
But what happens when we wake up every morning exercising a well-established resistance to all things sacred and mystical? When did our go-to response become HELL, NO!? When did chanting what we don’t believe become our new version of prayer?
Or have we awakened once again to a world where the questions you are asking echo back to you from grey concrete walls and iron bars? Do we ready ourselves for the barrage once again by girding our loins with the weaponry of conflict, don our headphones so as to cloak ourselves with a joyless sound wave, strategically designed to drown not only the voices of others but the voice of silence in its churning cacophony? From our first waking moment, do we fill our minds to overflowing with the desperate sounds of struggle? The repetitive white-noise vibes of data-driven pride?
When did we become such willing victims of noise?
Of course, this would lead to depression. Naturally, this would contribute to anxiety. Clearly, it has led to epidemic loneliness. As a matter of fact, this must lead to a creative wasteland.
Would it be fair to say that you don’t want to be told what to do, but you don’t know what to do? Am I hearing that you don’t know how to surrender and admit that you really don’t know?
Can you consider, that by this confusion, you are committing to a life of struggle and pain?
When we live a life based on what we have thrown away, what does that say about what we keep?
Where is your sacred? Is this it?
Those mind-sparks, tears, and goosebumps
I invite you to recollect a moment in time when you experienced a WOW! moment, one of those moments when the words of wisdom you heard, or what you were learning was so compelling that you got shivers, or maybe goosebumps, or perhaps even had your eyes mist over with the revelation.
I call those mind-sparks. They are flashes of brilliance, bolts of inspiration so delightful that for one moment your mind lit up like chain lightning in the dead of night…
These are the promptings of your inner spirit, your highest Self, your Constant Traveller. The wisest among us have learned to not only listen to these promptings and to follow their lead, but they have made it a sacred ritual to anticipate and celebrate each and every one.
My relationship with my Constant Traveller is communicated in symbol and silence. Her trail of light is illuminated by the trail of my tears and the urging of my goosebumps when I hear and feel and follow her lead.
When I embrace elegant Paula.
This can be termed as following your bliss. Understand that following your bliss is presented in many forms, but its confirmation can be understood as mind-sparks, tears, and goosebumps. Perhaps this is their real meaning?
The day of the infallible guru, shaman, and priest may be behind us, but we cannot leave our inner landscape devoid of inspiration and nourishment. That is, if we choose to follow our inner promptings. That is, if we wish to be the person we came to life to be. That is, if we wish to be happy.
The quest is begun by choice. The Sun that lights the day, and the Borealis that lights the night are created by fearless faith, focus, and fortitude. We bring bliss to life through the navigation points of mind-sparks, tears, and goosebumps, aka inspiration.
You create the map that will serve your best life.
The choice is yours. This aspect is a solitary endeavor. You must be willing to embrace your spiritual inheritance that is creativity. You must be willing to follow those mind-sparks of inspiration that will lead you into dialogue with your own Constant Traveller.
Where to begin…
To transmute is a term that is most often used in reference to the ancient art of Alchemy. It is the term that my Constant Traveller, mySelf, requests me to use (gotta love those mind-sparks!), because, I see, it means to alter and adapt, but it also contains the word, mute.
Stop the music. Shut down the apps. Silence the white noise. Suspend your disbelief. Anticipate something coloured beautiful.
Our inner voice speaks to us in silence.
Silence is the language of feeling.
Feeling is the language of childhood.
You must be willing to reunite with your eldest child (perhaps your only child) – the one inside of you so you can feel like a child again and stop resisting your own impulse to question, explore, to create…to do some serious playing – to learn to play all over again as an adult.
We have the research that indicates that the cure for depression, anxiety, and loneliness is connection. We have the ability to apply the cure for this pandemic right this moment…by reframing it. Let’s make creativity pandemic! Let’s dare to dream of a world where we have the freedom to choose something other than the status quo! Where imagination and innovation form the mountains and valleys and rivers and oceans. Where we not only discover a safe harbor, but we design the boat, and the dock, and the harbor!
I wanna sail with that crew!
Krishnamurti said, Life is relationship. It was a WOW! moment for me when I first read these words of wisdom, and has served as the catalyst for many deep conversations with my Constant Traveller since then.
I would never have found it if I hadn’t been looking.
Imagine your best life. This is your precious, sacred dream. It is sacred to you and you honor and grow it by your attention to it.
Today is the perfect day for some serious play! Perhaps it’s time to connect with your inner kiddo and make a play date?
Hell Yeah! Seriously. Play. 🙂