Thursday, July 26, 2012
Everything Changes, thoughts on life and non-attachment
acrylic and pitt artist pen on paper
I'm not really sure where this came from. I drew it last night in my journal and then painted it this morning. Well, I painted over it because I didn't like how it turned out.
I was looking at a video of Maira Kalman and I think she inspired me. I've seen her work before, but I don't think I ever really thought about the woman herself or her philosophy. Anyway, after watching her video and looking at some of the illustrations that went with it, this is what popped into my head. Actually I think I had a different idea, but it was really late and the idea that came to me first would have entailed taking out all my paints and setting up my palette and it was really late. I didn't actually have time to start a whole painting unless I wanted to be up until past 2 am... which I didn't. So I grabbed some pitt artist pens and started drawing whatever came to mind.
So this morning, I looked at it again, thinking I might have to scrap it all, and stopped.
I didn't have to accept it as a disappointment. All I had to do was adjust it.
I had that power.
I took out my white paint and painted right over it. A couple coats and it was gone, with only a shadow of the original mistake to prove that I'd learned something.
Then I added my familiar hatchmarks/raindrops/time ticks.
Do I love it? Well, it's not my favorite. But it doesn't have to be a masterpiece.
It reminds me that I am not doomed by the mistakes I have made. It reminds me that every day is another day where we have the ability to act and interact and adjust things and make them work better for us than they do today. The world does not have to remain where it is. In fact, the world never ever remains where it is. It's always turning, always changing. It might seem as if life is static, but that's an illusion that we like to keep because it makes us feel comfortable.
This whole post might seem to contradict yesterday's post where i talk about accepting the season you are living, but in reality, I don't think it does. The thing is, if you accept your life for what it is, you can then work on changing things that actually are there without all the emotional resentment and attachment to the outcome.
I do think that this is the Buddhist concept of non-attachment. It is something that I have struggled with my whole life, really, since I first remember watching an old Sinbad movie, where Sinbad asks the genie what wish he would grant if it were his choice, and the genie grants Sinbad happiness. I remember thinking, "But no! What if his life is no good? He can't be happy with it! He has to change it!"
But there it is. My journey with the concept of non-attachment started with an old Sinbad movie-- or was it Aladdin? Anyway, I think I've started to come around to realizing that non-attachment does not mean you don't want anything, but that you are not attached to the outcome, your happiness is not dependent upon a certain result. Because the truth is, even if you get that desired outcome, it will never stay. Because life is not static and everything changes.
Everything changes, the good and the bad. If we accept that, and if we accept life as it changes, whether we are directing the changes consciously or just letting it happen, then we can find happiness, even as the world is spinning in seeming chaos.
Well. Those are deep thoughts for the morning. I now have to run and get ready for work. I hope I'm making sense. I'm not sure I'd make better sense if I sat for hours and struggled over every word. I'm not really sure I have it completely straight in my head, but the thoughts are a process, too, and they too can change.