“A writer is a person for whom writing is more difficult than it is for other people,”- Thomas Mann.
Creation happens in silence, and no artist can sincerely tell what produces the desire within his heart to create. Only the people that sacrificed a steady paycheck for a dream, that requires a little delusion, could possibly be able to paint the portrait of a young artist. Any child with the inclination to create can grow sick from such a deep repression. However, the young man must not romanticize the path of creation, but must devote every breathe to developing the discipline and faith required to birth any idea. One must be willing to sacrifice pleasure, delay gratification, spend hours agonizing over commas and letters, and life their life through this passion. This approach requires complete focus and commitment in order to see the blessings a future dedicated to the heart can produce. We work because something sits on the other side of devotion, and being unable to see into the future we acquire the art of delusion in order to survive. The artist must maintain his peace in order to follow this life through. We must change in order to create a life that seems to be carved from the mind of a neurotic, for what gives us the right to live the life of our dreams while so many others suffer. As we walk deeper into the life of an artist we must relinquish the life we knew and welcome ourselves into a strange foreign land. Our dreams will make room for us the moment we decide to succeed; destined to live a miraculous life the young artist must first overcome the same tribulations as the ancestors. We must BE in order to Become.
If you are going to be a writer there is nothing I can say to stop you; if you’re not going to be a writer nothing I can say will help you. What you really need at the beginning is somebody to let you know that the effort is real.
The devoted artist aims at bringing forth the most essential within mans potential, but in order to survive the journey towards mastery we have to survive the journey of a weary mind. We learn to go against the desires that urge one to quit, to continue in spite of the many failures, and find a sense of communion in “being”. One is forced to become sensitive to their interior lives, and through the recognition of our emotions become connected to everyone around us. I challenge every artist to commit to presence, and allow the unknown to transform us and create opportunities, for the young artist is so judgmental, so harsh, and one must reflect on the person we were in order to appreciate the people we’ve become. A man that aims to create must actively balance that state that keeps people in relationships long past their due date: the state of being alone and being in the presence of another person. The awareness of our aloneness can paralyze all action, but the balanced artist recognizes the necessity of having people to hold. Having someone to solve the problem of feeling like we have to be strong on our own. The people we’ve become and aim to be are dependent on the people we allow to love us, and many things in this life require partnership, and I am beginning to understand creation is one of those. While the artist must have the qualities of a Hero one must be able to lay within the presence of another person that share his faith. While we must conquer the great mystery of the self, we must learn to enter the space of another person and “be”. In order to make the world a little more bearable the devoted artist must find balance in that state of existence exulted by artist. For years we have heard the stories of the lonely depressed impoverished and loveless artist, but we are not meant to walk this world musing beside a silver lake. If every experience is purposeful then love serves a wonderful purpose. The artist deserves love and the aloneness of the creative process must be mastered alongside our ability to embrace the touch of someone that loves us. The world gave us love, so we must provide the world with our art. The artist must create or perish, but without the embrace of another person that artist puts his endurance and his mind at a disadvantage. The artist that finds this balance discovers a truth that leads to more truth. We are utterly dependent on other people. This is not a crippling or toxic dependence, but dependent in the way a village is required to raise a child. The artist must learn to embrace love.
One must live as if every goal has been achieved in order to achieve every goal. For in this aligned with the people we aim to become the artist also corrects the delusions surrounding his work. Like Siddhartha the artist learns to follow his heart, and like Steppenwolf, we learn to embrace the simplicity of being. But, in order to begin the journey towards mastery, the artist is forced to admit when he has lost his way, for the path we desire requires commitment. Since the purpose of the artist is to reveal the chaos behind all of our traditions we are uprooting the identity of a nation. In order for the artist to reveal our collective delusion his own assumptions, prejudices, and traditions must be put under the examination board for dissection. Through the act of self-examination the artist separates himself from every politician, pastor, and educator by setting up these very rigorous rules of self-development. The artists works through his fear by setting creation as his highest purpose. For many of us, artists, there is no other life, we do the things we do to survive.
“A self-respecting artist must not fold his hands on the pretext that he is not in the mood.”