Transformational Power of Writing
One who understands
“One who understands others has knowledge;
One who understands herself has wisdom.
Mastering others requires force;
Mastering the self needs strength.”
(Tao The Ching, from Verse 33)
I was busy writing.
I was writing a lot, but I was so creative that I did not even know what I was writing about.
When you don’t know, it is hard to achieve anything worth publishing.
There was an idea at the beginning and then …
then there was a “brilliant” idea that I could not pull off.
Then I could not pull off any ideas, no matter how dull or brilliant. I was writing draft after draft after draft… I lost count how many of them I had.
Living involves tearing up one rough draft after another. ~Author Unknown
I had too many ideas, too many drafts and twelve hubs waiting to be released from the prison created by a careless author. Twelve poorly written hubs… about… about?
1. Music (2)
2. Men are Buses (1)
3. Names (1)
4. Visions/Illusions (?) (2)
5. Mirrors (5)
6. Autobiography (1)
The list is far from being all-encompassing, the scope of my creativity… There is no scope, there are no limits. It flows too freely, flooding everything on its way.
Trying to contain the flow of my writing may not be such a bad idea.
It has to take some shape, some form, some figure. It is time to “figure out” who or what is exactly waiting to spread wings and take off? Hubs? Creativity? The author?
Divide and conquer
Two years (THREE! – I cannot even count) ago I started a new chapter in my life – “divorce”. That chapter had no shape, but there was one that had. “I am a writer.” When I started it, I was no such thing, not even close. “I am a writer” was only the folder name where I kept “stuff” for my web-site www.altrealm.com. “Altrealm” stands for “Alternative Realm”. For two years I was not writing, I was collecting pieces that reflected my personality.
It can be called a collection, a collage, a scrapbook, a diary.
Maybe I was creating an alternative reality. In a Nutshell. That is how I called it “In a Nutshell”. It is not very interesting, not interesting at all, but it was a stage.
Then I came to HubPages. I started another chapter/folder. “HubPages”. After being on HubPages for six months, I accumulated too many files and it was time to sort them out into smaller sections: names, men, visions…
I got stuck when I decided to analyze my progress and to chart the course for the future.
It came up with yet another vision and then before I knew it, “Creating Myself” section was born.
“Creating Myself” is all about writing, creativity and me. It’s a love triangle. Creativity does not love me, I don’t love my writing, but we are stuck in a troubled marriage of inconvenience.
I don’t consider myself creative, yet I call my writing creative. What is so creative about it? Talking ad nauseum about myself? Rrrrrright! In that sense everybody is creative.
Everybody IS creative, it is an axiom. Not everybody is a writer, but it is a different story.
It is a fascinating and mind-boggling story because everybody IS and SHOULD be a writer.
Limiting creativity to writing was a problem
All these incoherent drafts had to become beautiful articles. I am not the one to create an orphanage for my hubs. I don’t quit. I keep going, I keep thinking and writing, not necessarily in that order.
It had to happen. It?
But it was not. It was not coming together. It was not falling apart either. All these drafts were like reflections in the mirror, splitting, multiplying, moving, confusing, disorientating, tantalizing. Was that me in the mirror? Me? The horror. The horror!!!
“Part of your beauty, without a doubt: Your thought and ability to question, your insight, your wit, humor, unrelenting curiosity and willingness to look in the mirror for more than just a one dimensional reflection.”
Maybe it was curiosity and willingness. Maybe it was sheer idiocy. But I have created the Mirror House and looked at my reflection for longer than I could tolerate. I saw myself not only in those “Creating Myself Stories”, but in everything that I have written so far. Everything, including my diaries, my notes, my stories, my hubs, my comments.
One has just to be oneself. That’s my basic message.
The moment you accept yourself as you are, all burdens, all mountainous burdens simply disappear. Then life is a sheer joy, a festival of lights.
~ Bhagwan Shree Rajneesh
It’s not a problem, it is an opportunity
I was trapped. I was colliding with my own reflections smashing the glass and bleeding all over it.
An ordinary man behaves like a dog which, upon entering a hall of mirrors, barks at all the other dogs. The sage, entering the hall of mirrors, sees only himself.
But I did not see myself at all. I kept barking, crying, bleeding, laughing and writing. I was trying but it was not happening. The more it was not happening, the more determined (enraged?) I became.
“Why do you write?” my mother asked me. She did not ask me what I was writing. I felt that I was judged and rejected again.
“You don’t have to write. You should keep it as a hobby because you would not be able to make money writing. It is almost impossible. You should take care of your life. Now.” said the man whose opinion I hold in highest esteem.
But nothing could stop me. Only occasionally, I forced myself to leave my room/my prison and go dance when I did not want to, because only physical separation for a computer helped to stop “typing”. Thinking? I could not stop thinking. I felt I was on the verge of something.
“I have it.”
“No, I don’t, I am dreaming.”
“I have it.”
“This is it.”
“No, I am hallucinating.”
“No!!! I should stop”.
“Don’t give up…”
Going through hell
I was like a car stuck in the mud – or rather the driver of that car. I kept pressing the gas pedal. You know what happens when you do that – you just dig deeper and deeper until you get so stuck that you bury the vehicle. And yourself. Maybe not. The vehicle is gone, but you can escape and learn a lesson.
I was going through hell.
If you’re going through hell, keep going. ~Winston Churchill
True, what are the choices?
2. Keep going.
I kept going and finally, I figured out what I was doing. I was giving birth to myself.
“Man's main task in life is to give birth to himself, to become what he potentially is. The most important product of his effort is his own personality.“
When a child is being born, the benevolent Nature takes care of everything. There is a program being executed. But to give birth to yourself? It is like executing yourself. I have another “wonderful expression” in mind that is completely obscene and involves the suggestion “Go [do] it yourself!” No, it is not the rudeness of it that fascinates me. It is the lack of imagination. How am I supposed to do that? Give me the manual…
There is no manual. No, not that one. The first one - “Giving birth to yourself.”
“42 Steps of Personality Production” ($5,000.42).
Maybe that is how I can monetize my Wonderfulness?
There is one suggestion I saw and immediately fell in love with:
“Bold brows are a way to add personality to an otherwise minimal look.”
The word “product” means something that comes at the end of the process.
In Russian, however, “product” has double meaning, it can be “food”.
Food is the result of production, but consumed it becomes the beginning of a new cycle. The reason I paid attention to such detail was that studying
“Thermal Ovens (another linguistic beauty “Thermal Ovens” as if there are any “Freezing Ovens”) and Technological Processes” I mixed up “products” as results of the process with “products” as the “ingredients necessary to start the process”. I mixed the beginning and the end, secondary and primary.
What I have discovered, we confuse the beginnings and the ends all the time. We don’t know what comes first, what comes second. Maybe you do. I don’t.
What comes first? Thinking or writing?
“And we know with perfect exactitude that primary matter is secondary and secondary is primary matter.”
“That’s nothing but nonsense,” I said to my own surprise. “That’s metaphysics, Hegelianism, and Kantianism. In reality, primary matter is primary matter and secondary matter is secondary matter.”
For all that life had taught me, it hadn’t taught me to button my lip. How many times had intelligent people tried to instill one elementary lesson in me: don’t shoot off your mouth the second some idea comes into your head. Think a little, see if the idea’s worth telling to anyone.” (Vladimir Voinovich “Moscow 2042”)
I am just like that, if I hear something I strongly disagree with, I will jump up. For twenty years, I thought I was as straightforward as it gets. Primary first, secondary second.
But now I see the point. I thought thinking comes first, writing second. It does, but now having written so much, I realize that “real thinking and understanding” comes after writing. At least, for me.
- Has anyone read "Moscow 2042" as oppose to "1984" by George Orwell?
Listing of the answers to the question: Has anyone read "Moscow 2042" as oppose to "1984" by George Orwell?The question "Is there one novel you've read more than once? What keeps bringing you back to it?" got quite an attention. A few readers mention
Transformational Power of Art
“And so, Classic Nikitich, I’d to have a little talk with you about art. That’s a very interesting subject, no end to it. What is art, why does it exist, where does it get its strange and mysterious power, those are questions no one can answer. To the best of my knowledge, you think that art is no more than a reflection of life, is that right?”
“That’s right,” I said. “That’s more or less what I think.”
“But that’s absolutely wrong!” shouted the marshal, and, leaping up from his chair, he began dashing about the room like a young man. “Classic Nikitich, there’s something I want to tell you. Listen carefully to what I say. Your point of view is absolutely wrong.
Art does not reflect life, but transforms it.” He even made very vigorous gestures, as if trying to mimic the transformational power of art. “You understand,” he repeated excitedly, “it transforms life. And even more than that, art does not reflect life, life reflects art.” (Vladimir Voinovich “Moscow 2042”)
Art is transforming my life. The art of creative writing. If you disagree with me on what Art is, see the article “Creating a Vision – It Is All in Your Head”. It is the only article I was able to produce during my frantic gas pedalling.
Art does not mean perfection. Art is a product of creativity. Everybody is creative and everybody creates Art. The fact that you don’t enjoy someone’s Art does not mean that it is not Art, it means that you don’t enjoy it.
“Of course,” he said with a sad nod, as if admitting something that was supposed to have remained a secret. “Did you really figure that out all by yourself?”
“I didn’t have to figure anything out,” I said. “The truth was right there in front of me. But I didn’t have the imagination to accept it.”
“That’s precisely the point!” he said as if I had confirmed some thesis of his. “That’s precisely the point, we still do not trust our own imaginations. We don’t understand how perfect we are, and we think that there exists some objective world that does not depend on the way we view it.”
“Edik,” I interrupted, “you don’t have to tell me all that. I’ve already heard that primary is secondary and secondary is primary.”
“You’ve heard it, but you don’t believe it because of your defective imagination. You know, among other things, I’ve also studied madmen suffering from hallucinations of every sort. And I’ve come to conclusion that there is no such thing as hallucination. It’s just that the person having the hallucination sees something we cannot see, while we see things that he can’t.”
“In other words, let’s say, if I drink to the point where I get the DTs and start seeing devils, does that mean they really exist?”
“Of course,” said Edik with a nod. “They really exist in your world, whereas in mine, as long as I’m sober…” (Vladimir Voinovich “Moscow 2042”)
Giving birth is painful. Giving birth to yourself is excruciating because it is a daily process. Why should I punish myself? What is wrong with me? Can’t I be like everybody else?
I cannot. I can only be myself. When Daniel arrived, the thing that bugged me the most was that I did not know who my son was. What do I mean? He had to grow up for me to be able to get to know him. My ex did not understand. That is what makes us so different. I have to know. I have to know who Daniel is. I have to know who I am.
I have been asked to stop thinking. I tortured myself enough to give up and agree. If my thinking gets me in trouble, maybe I should listen and just stop.
However, it is my thinking that got me to this point:
“It is all too easy to remain on something of a fog-shrouded, slippery slope right into our graves; or, in the fog-dispelling clarity which on occasion precedes the moment of death, to wake up and realize that what we thought all those years about how life was to be lived and what was important were at best unexamined half-truths based on fear or ignorance, only our own life-limiting ideas, and not the truth or the way our life had to be at all.”
(Jon Kabat-Zinn “Wherever you go there you are”)
But I don’t want to be stuck in unawareness, I don’t want to be the driver of that car and dig my own grave.
- Step out of the vehicle, mam. License and registration. Police Constable Speedy Gonzalez, Police Department 42.
- As you wish. It’s all yours. I am boarding a plane. Or a magic carpet? Where is my weed? I should be allowed now, I am not driving.
Dreams have no expiration date
I may not be a writer, but I write to live, to become alive, and to know myself.
My business cards say “freelancer” and “Dreams have no expiration date.” I don’t know about “freelancer” – a bit of an overstatement. “Free” I can accept, but “freelancer”? or “lancer”? And the most misleading word is “business”. I have no business. It is none of MY business.
But secondary is primary and primary is secondary, therefore who knows? Maybe first come the cards, then comes the business.
The design is not me – different shades of pink, some curvy vegetation (not me ) and two butterflies.
“Are you sure it is not you even if for a second?” mckbirdbks asked me.
The design is not me, not even for a second, but I will live with it because I have 1,000 of those “butterflies” (correction: 1,000 cards, 2,000 butterflies).
I may not know who I am, but I know what I like. I like beauty, I like images and I like photographs. I collect them on vi.sualize.us. It is a nice web-site, the only problem is that the tags do not work properly. If I tag ninety-nine pictures with “butterfly”, only nine of them will come up when I do the search. Just like my brain – everything is there, but retrieval is problematic.
These images are not for business cards, they are for me and they are me. Me, me, me.
It is my “Art Gallery” as of today,
my "House of Wonderfulness".
To figure out:
Playing with figures and figuring out is a long creative process. Creativity has no limits and I have no more patience for this piece. I will pick arbitrarily first five tags and create an image.
Figure #1: Pentagon = (Pen + Tag + On): Woman, Black and White, Artistic, Blue, Metaphor
I am a woman. It also shows that I don’t have enough men in my collection. I like photographs in black and white, they are very dramatic. Blue is my colour. Artistic?
Metaphors are dangerous. Love begins with a metaphor. Which is to say, love begins at the point when a woman enters her first word into our poetic memory. Milan Kundera
Metaphor? Oh, how I love metaphors!!!
Metaphor: An artistic woman in black and white is blue.
Is it me? I can be. Even if only for a second.
In the meantime it is time for something silly.
On a second thought - isn't any time the time for something silly? I don't know, you decide.
From "Mad About Mambo" - Edmundo Ross "Va-Ba-Boom"
I am not dead yet.
Creating a Vision Series
- Creating a Vision - Am I Beautiful? Just Say Yes
How to get over my insecurities? You don't know? Neither do I. Am I beautiful? Am I powerful? Does it matter? For what? Questions, questions, questions.
- Creating a Vision - 42 Ways to Make Money out of Nothing.
Offering you to enjoy my creativity - free of charge. Giving a few lessons in modern art, addition and subtraction, philosophy and brain surgery.
- Creating a Vision - It's All In Your Head
Part of fundamentality is mentality. Three fundamental questions: philosophy, art and audience are discussed in light of why, what, how and whom for we write.
© 2011 kallini2010