We Are What We Create

Mike forwarded this blog entry from Whiskey River with the note that it “made me think of you,� which I considered a great compliment.

To create, the painter needs paint, brushes, and canvas; the sculptor, wood, stone, or metal, and tools; the poet, words and a pen and paper – or computer; the composer, sounds, notes, paper. *But for one awakened to the nature of Mind, the entire universe is the canvas; hands, feet, emotions, and intellect the implements*. Each moment is joy ungrounded, ripe, and creative, when we are liberated from the enslaving notions of “This is my head, this is my body, this is my mind.” Here, at the core of each of us, is creativity, here is the art of living. If the mission of the artist is “to make the invisible visible,” in the words of Leonardo da Vinci, the purpose of Zen is to bring into consciousness the substrata of both the unconscious and the conscious.”
– Philip Kapleau
Awakening to Zen

Of course, I’d already read it because I’ve read Whiskey River faithfully since 2001 when I first started blogging. Strangely, though, I’m not sure I really read it until Mike re-sent it, perhaps because I didn’t think of it as applying to me when I first read it.

Of course, I don’t think I really live up to the ideal expressed here, but it is my ideal, my ultimate goal. Although I lack the talent to express my ideas effectively in any one media, I like to think that I can compensate for that lack of talent by living my whole life creatively, and doing so is what brings the greatest joy to my life, whether it’s writing haiku, taking photographs, landscaping my yard, making my own furniture, or carving decorations for the house.

I probably can’t convince people that we need to make greater efforts to protect what is left of our environment, but I can still find joy in capturing moments of nature’s beauty, whether a Rufous Hummingbird perched on a branch

or spring blossoms