Some Asian cultures believe that creativity comes into being from forces external to the self; the self is just a channel through which creativity flows. If you try to praise one of the people who believes this, they might give you a funny look and say something like “well, thanks, but… it wasn’t really me that made it. I just allowed it to arrive.” This would seem pretty antithetical to how American’s view creativity -what with the way we like to slap our name on everything and take credit. (a funny story shared by some of my Disneyland friends comes to mind: Julie Andrews -and how she insisted that her name be inserted into the front of the fireworks show even though the show really had nothing to do with her. “BITCH!!!”)
Something lovely and well timed occurred for me recently. For whatever reason I was browsing videos that I had uploaded to YouTube when I came to discover that a long lost video I had made several years ago became unlocked and available again. (YouTube used to lock or restrict videos that had copy written songs in them -I guess they got wise and realized that they could allow such videos and just slap on a link in the video to buy the song in order to generate revenue. Whatever.) I made …er. or rather, channeled the creation of this video featuring images from the video game Final Fantasy VIII:
I recall that the creation of this “feather of lead” video felt very poignant and fated, in a way. As I was editing it together I was amazed to find how well the song and the images fit together. At some points the images even aligned to the music on their own and I barely had to make any adjustments at all. The creation of this video really felt as if it were coming through a power higher than myself -and that I, genuinely and joyously, was merely channeling its creation. What is great today is how this video happened to arrive at a time in my life where I feel exactly like the characters in the video do. Namely, I feel like I’ve been on a long journey only to hit a dead end and feel like there is no way out of being stuck from moving on to the things that I want to move on to (graduate school, finding a life partner, starting a career, etc…) The solution to this problem, as it is illustrated in the video, and as countless friends have reminded me, is to remain open and have faith. Just as Walt Disney programed me as a kid:
“Like a bolt out of the blue
Fate steps in and sees you through
When you wish upon a star
Your dreams come true”
A vital component in all this, one which I think Disney lacks, is the reality that… your dreams aren’t going to just be handed to you. You gotta work for your dreams… you gotta work hard! And this kinda sucks… because I feel really lazy. I’m having to work hard right now to keep from labeling myself in saying “I am lazy” -saying that would invite myself to negate my own responsibility to take charge and move forward in life. I also feel afraid: Afraid that I won’t be able to find a lot in life where I can feel adequately fulfilled.
I am at a loss for which direction I am going to go now that I have a year until graduate school and I’m afraid that I’ll either spend this next year broke and miserable or unsatisfied and miserable. The path isn’t clear to me where I can find a balance of getting money and doing something that I care about (and therefore not be miserable). Yeah… I know. I’m not the first to face this challenge. G’ah. The clicheness of this conundrum is boring.
Let me jump back into what is exciting: The unknown. The possibilities. What happens at the end of Lost when Christian Shepperd opens the church doors and the room fills with light? What happens when Squall (the character in the Final Fantasy video that I made) grabs the feather at the end -and everything turns to white? What happens when you are unexpectedly gifted a year of your own life? I don’t know (and that is okay). As long as I remain open, have faith, and work hard -I believe an answer will be channeled through me. It will arrive and it will be clear because right now I am already carrying the answers around already inside me -just like the Tin Man, Scarecrow, and Cowardly Lion from the Wizard of Oz. God grant me the serenity… pick a point and jump.