i was going to do a different blog than this one; a zen-do-da blog (see link for more on zen-do-da if you don’t know what that is)
i was all set to be blissful and encouraging and uplifting. i’ve read The Secret, you know, and other books like that. i DO believe that we have the option and power to make our lives what we want. sort of. i mean, i believe that changing our thoughts for the better equals finding and receiving better things. but this blog went south on me…sort of literally.
so i’m in the bathroom (hey we all poop, there’s a book about it)
and i’m reading one of these happy books, telling me that i’m in control. usually in these situations (moments of … reclining in the restroom) i’m working a Sudoku puzzle. i know, i know, TMI. whatever. but i’m out of puzzles for this purpose, so i’m reading this feel good book and making notes with my little red pen. and i’m all “la la la, life is good” when i drop my pen down the toilet. for real??
and i’m wondering to myself: how does an artist or writer apply the ideas and beliefs of the Secret to his life? and i’m hoping any of you followers out there will join in on this as a discussion. because The Secret poses a dilemma for those of us in the art industry.
if i were a professional bowler, or a mail delivery agent, or a worker in any one of a million different fields, i could see how The Secret thinking could improve my life and my productivity. but for those of us who are writers and artists, how do we make this work?
if you haven’t read The Secret, i highly recommend you do. otherwise you will have no idea what i’m talking about here, and that’s no fun at all. basically the premise is that what you think is what you get. if you put out a bunch of negative thoughts and energy, that’s what you are bringing right back to you. if, on the other hand, you are putting out love, and happiness, and good thoughts, you will be getting back same.
ok, you may or may not agree with all that. that we will save for another blog.
this blog wants discussion.
if i’m a writer, i can’t just sit and write about a girl picking daisies all day. boring. then she goes and walks along the beach, and finds a million dollars in a packet of 10’s and 20’s, non sequentially numbered and wrapped in a pink bow, so she doesn’t even have to claim taxes if she doesn’t want. and along came mr. right, you get the picture. i can’t do this. as an artist, i CAN’T sit and look at the beautiful all day long, because that isn’t where all the heart tearing emotions lie.
the heart tearing emotions, the things that MOVE us are in the dark! they are lying in a gutter, homeless and underfed. they are sitting at the table with a morning cup of coffee, crying over their mashed up marriage or their dying soul. they are tying themselves up in sheets at night from tossing and turning over their nightmares. THIS is where the interest is for a writer, or painter, or a poet. the angst. the pain. the agonizing loneliness of life.
because we all feel it at times, and tapping into that commonality is magical, and links us all together till we are one spool of thread.
so all you blogging authors and feely artists out there, how do we make The Secret work for us, without losing the inspiration that grief and sorrow provide?
Guy: (after waiting an extra 45 minutes because the doctor was flirting with his nurses)
“I keep getting this pain in my eye, like, every day. It’s like clockwork.”
Doctor: “Tell me about it, guy”.
Guy: “Well, it’s really painful. It’s like this stabbing pain, this searing stabbing pain that hurts like hell, and I want it to stop hurting. Man it hurts.”
Doctor: “You say this happens every day?”
Guy: “Yeah like clockwork. Every morning I’m getting this horrible ache in my eye.”
Doctor: “Tell me your morning routine”.
Guy: “Well I get up and, you know, I have to “pee”, and then I putz around and look for the paper. And I make myself a cup of coffee; strong, not this pussy coffee you buy at these crappy chain places that have like mounds of cream or foam or some shit. But I do put SOME cream in my coffee, ok, sue me, I don’t have much hair on my chest. Christ. What was I saying? Oh, so I put in some sugar too, ‘cause like I said, I make it pretty strong, and then I stir it up and slurp it down, and then I get this horrible ass headache”.
Doctor: “Try taking the spoon out of your cup”.
Ok, so that’s my version of the story, but you’ve heard it. What’s my point?
I’ve been reading “The Secret”, and many other books that are similarly minded. Good stuff if you’re into that kind of thing. Stupid if you’re not, I suppose. One of the books I’ve been reading lately is dealing with relationships, and how to make them better and stronger. Much good advice in this book. But also some advice I have to leave in the book, and not carry around in my head. The book has a specific religious slant that I don’t agree with, and it amazes me how I feel after reading it. I find I’m really buying into this whole idea that you vibrate on a certain frequency. The whole “birds of a feather flock together” thing. So the way you are is great, you’re awesome, and you gravitate towards other things that vibrate on your level. These things may not all be similar to you, but you are on the same frequency level, so you are compatible, or compliment each other, or match somehow. And I’m finding this true in many aspects of my life; even books! Because despite the fact that this book has some much needed information for me, I certainly don’t match its frequency for the most part.
Take, for example, “Click”, which I recently wrote about. After reading this book, I felt energized, excited, motivated and hopeful. Immediately after reading the book – and actually half way through it – I began sharing the concepts of the book with others. Siblings, friends, strangers; it didn’t matter who you were, I wanted to tell you about the book. I started quoting and recommending and blogging about the book. It helped me learn more about myself. It made me feel like I had purpose. It made me send an email to the authors and write a gushing thank you for this wonderful, life changing piece of work. In comparison, the book I’m reading now – though chock full of good information I will remember and utilize in my relationships – makes me feel bad. Its focus is on complaining, and whether you are complaining too much about life, and lovers, and situations. Complain less, is the motto, which is wonderful. I want to do that. Look at my blogs, I complain all the time. So after reading this book I feel like I’ve been doing things wrong. I’ve been questioning my direction. I feel guilt about maybe being a bad person, even though just this morning I decided I’m going to make some cornbread for a perfect stranger just because the old man mentioned he loved it when we met on my morning walk today. Or maybe I feel guilt because I am complaining too much about life? Or maybe I’m guilty because I don’t feel love, and don’t seem to get it? I get anxious, and nervous, and start to cry. I feel confused and at odds and discouraged. Yes, yes, some of the information is good. I already said that. Otherwise I would have stopped reading a long time ago. But the book doesn’t make me FEEL GOOD.
And here comes The Secret. If it doesn’t make you feel good, stop doing it. If you aren’t happy in the center of it, get into the thing that DOES make you feel happy. So I appreciate and receive the good information from the book, but then I have to put it down. Because really, we all have our own ways and beliefs, and this way and belief has helped all kinds of people all over the world, according to the author and the review on the cover. But it doesn’t match MY frequency. I find it fascinating that organized religion seems to have this effect on me. Makes me squeamish, guilt ridden and worriful just being near it. While it makes others I know happy, full of love and grateful, it just makes me exhausted. I don’t want to focus on complaining, and counting how many times I complain, and noticing when and how and why I complain.
I want to focus on LOVE. I want to let love IN, and let love BE, and let love flourish all around me. I want to GIVE love and RECEIVE love, and LIVE IN LOVE. I want LOVE to be my focus. Not complaints.
And so, I must leave aside religion. I notice and take up what bits make sense to me, and continue my journey in love. Because that is what I want to fill my life with. Not condemnation. Not judgment. Not the attentive eyes of people who tell me I’m doing this wrong or failing to do that right. I want love in my life. I want acceptance, and peace and happiness. And religion can give that to some people. But not me. And so, like the good doctor would recommend, I must take the spoon out of my cup.