We create a sense of adventure through writing, painting, and creation, for writing is learning to love again. A sense of meaning carries us through our suffering. The belief in the universality of our experience carries us through the potential of transforming our pain. Our faith in committing ourselves to a grand adventure is the foundation of our self-worth. We need to know that our suffering will mean something. As we sculpt our future in the face of turmoil, poverty, and fear we discover beauty. When we are the most tired, frustrated, and paralyzed is means we discover beauty.
This is one of the many ways we must conquer ourselves; for we are obligated to stay connected to divinity. With a mother like intensity and gentle love Anais Nin speaks about the conquest of the human spirit. One must actively remember that life contains the potential to change. That change is dependent on how well we are committed to adventure. One must recognize adventure in the check engine light. See the potential in the onions filling up our refrigerator. We must find laughter in being unable to buy our loved ones Christmas presents. We must learn to accept the reality of each moment and work to create a new one. Anais speaks on looking at our lives a mythic adventures of epic proportion–Anais Nin On Adventure:
Nothing endures unless it has first been transposed into a myth, and the great advantage of myths is that they are ladies with portable roots. In each studio there is a human being dressed in the full regalia of his myth fearing to explore a vulnerable opening, spreading not his charms but his defenses, plotting to disrobe, somewhere along the night– his body without the aperture of the heart or his heart with a door closed to his body. Thus keeping one compartment for refuge, one uninvaded cell.
The one persistent in the quest becomes a hero; however, when these people reach heroic status we, the humble students, seem to give their lives a specialness separate from the very one contained in our lives. One learns, through earnestly fighting battles, that we cannot idealize the greats, but we can emulate. We can use their journey as a stepping stone to our greatness. The obstacles that one seemed immovable, impenetrable, and undefeatable are humanized in order to free us. When we make the decision of following our own path we walk a fine line between heroism and madness, and the only thing keeping us from madness is our commitment to the values we preach. For when we lose those values our lives come crumbling down, but through the consistency and longevity of becoming one day we shall wake up with the lions head in our hands.
Whether we decided to drop out of school to devote 8hrs a day to writing, or we work as production assistants at concerts, and Tv Shows, to one day become the person behind the camera, or we labor as a science teacher while creating time to build our business the outcome of our internal labyrinth determines our madness or heroism. I learned long ago that winning cares nothing about our addictions, our habits, our family history, or our fears, but winning only cares about our consistency and longevity. Our ability, or commitment, to climbing the highest mountains in the world is dependent on our stubbornness. Mythology teaches that suffering is key to our growth, but we must recognize that every decision either aids or limits our growth. Growth without difficulties doesn’t exist. Anais speaks about the recognition of continuance–recognizing life is always changing–Anais Nin On Adventure says:
I saw things as a chain and felt that everything is continuous and never really ends. I had a sense of continuity and relatedness relatedness between the past and the present and the future, between races and between the sexes, between everything. All night I had stayed there, without experiencing that abrupt end to fusion, that sudden and painful consciousness of separation, of reaching ultimately and always the need of my own world, the inability to remain outside, estranged, at some moment or other, from everyone.
This had not happened, this dawn had come as the first break in the compulsion and tyranny of inadaptation. (The way I once concealed from myself this drama of perpetual divorce was to blame the clock. I never knew what happened. At a party, at a visit, at a play, a film, came a moment of anguish. I cannot sustain the role, the pretense that I am at one with others, synchronized. Where was the exit? Flight. The imperative need of flight. Was it the failure to remove the obstacles, the walls, the barriers, the effort?
Something must change, and that something is the way we relate to ourselves, the world, our exes, our new love, and our discipline. In order to escape these miserable tiresome lives we must recognize that change is possible. Life challenges our wits, and when we see our suffering as meaningful we learn to know our worth. Anais speaks on happiness and solitude saying:
What can I do with my happiness? How can I keep it, conceal it, bury it where I may never lose it? I want to kneel as it falls over me like rain, gather it up with lace and silk, and press it over myself again. In the world of the dreamer there was solitude: all the exaltations and joys came in the moment of preparation for living. They took place in solitude. But with action came anxiety, and the sense of insuperable effort made to match the dream, and with it came weariness, discouragement, and the flight into solitude again.
And then in solitude, in the opium den of remembrance, the possibility of pleasure again. For love it is never the same. What goes on inside is never the same just like this music which changes every instant. For love, there are a million variations, a million nights, a million days, contrasts in moods, in textures, whims, a million gestures colored by emotion, by sorrow, joy, fear, courage, triumph, by revelations which deepen the groove, creations which expand its dimensions, sharpen its penetrations.
Anais Nin On Adventure speaks with warmth and urgency on those themes which have always been closest to her: relationships, creativity, the struggle for wholeness, the unveiling of woman, the artist as magician, women reconstructing the world, moving from the dream outward, and experiencing our lives to the fullest possible extent. Follow this essay up with Anais Nin on reading.
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