This is part two of my “What is Creating?” Series. Let’s get straight into it:
Here’s a fun debate for the Buddhists in the crowd, who may say that all desire is wrong, because it is a form of attachment, which causes suffering. I agree, attachment does cause suffering. If you insist on things turning out a certain way, you will cause pain to yourself and others. But having a vision is not the same as being attached to a desire. When creators dream up what they would love, they do so not because they are attached to an outcome, or because they need things to be a certain way, or to get away from the way things are, but for the love of the thing they wish to create. Creating is active loving. It’s loving something enough to bring it into being.
I think creating done right is in fact incredibly spiritual. It feels right to me that human beings have a natural desire to contribute to the world – just look at all the art, science, technology, wisdom, writing, music, etc. etc. etc. in the world. It seems like we are here to express ourselves in some way that is unique to each individual, and to deny this would be the same as denying who we are, and therefore the opposite of true spirituality. Real creators know what they love, and they know it is their birthright to go for it. They know how to hold an outcome lightly (like cupping water in your hand), and as a result, they get to be continually surprised by the wonders they bring into being.
There is a humungous difference between creating what you love for the sake of it (and enjoying your wonderful life as you do so) and chasing the proverbial carrot, and in the meantime not enjoying your life. Holding out for some great thing that will happen in the future is not creating.
As Eckhart Tolle puts it: “the present moment is all you ever have.”
This was something I was quite good at back in the day. I was pretty good as making stuff happen that I intended, but I was often deeply unhappy – to the point where I suffered intense depression on a fairly regular basis. As the masters tell us – kicking goals without heart, without passion can be very empty and meaningless. It can be a very lonely existence.
Real creating is an inclusive affair. It is done connected to others, connected to heart, connected to joy, connected to the delights and drama of being a human being. Believe it or not, the pleasure is mostly found when you are working on something, rather than when you have finished it. Real Creators create for fun, and they have fun doing it, and while they may also be challenged, the overall experience is pleasurable. It’s like sex. If you’re not enjoying it, you’re probably not doing it right.
This one is a little weird – but awesome once you get your head around it. Credit where credit is due: it comes from master creator and teacher, Robert Fritz.
Satisfaction sounds like a sensible goal right? But the truth is, if you seek to get satisfaction out of life and your various creations, you are not only destined to be less satisfied, but your creations will not be as great as they can be. Think about it: for a start, satisfaction is totally dependent on mood. So some days you will be satisfied, some days you won’t. Take it further: imagine you are in a relationship and you are seeking to be satisfied by the relationship. To the degree that you feel unsatisfied, you will be less committed to that relationship. To the degree that you are less committed, you will have less satisfaction in the relationship. Then you will be less committed…etc. etc. Seeking to be satisfied by your creations leads to less involvement in them, which leads to less satisfaction and creations that are not as great as they can be.
The opposite of seeking satisfaction is seeking involvement. Satisfaction is dependent on how you feel and other external factors, but you can be involved anytime, no matter what your mood, state of health, or anything else going on in your life. And the more you involve yourself in your creations, the more fun they are. If you seek to involve yourself more deeply in your relationship, for instance, it will lead to a greater experience of your relationship. And this will lead to truth. This may mean having a deep, fantastic relationship, or it may mean moving on to something that is more true for you. Either way, you will be having a real and meaningful experience of your life. And because you are seeking involvement, you will be seeking to contribute to life, and we all know that things go well for givers, rather than takers.
Real creators are deeply aware of their contribution to life, and they seek to involve themselves and to give their gift whenever and wherever they can. And as a result, they are happier and more successful. Seen from the outside, creators can look lucky. But the truth is they create their own luck.
That’s it for now. Watch this space for the next instalment.