Who am I? In this experience of consecutive moments strung together in a seemingly random collection of chaos and connection that we call life, and moreover, reality, we have with great intent and purpose, posed the question and with all that we are as living beings, consciously and subconsciously explored the definition and answer to that question.
Who am I? In the eyes of strangers to myself I have been known to be an intriguing, eccentric, profound mystery of a persona, an artist of many expressions, painting, writing, cinema, philosophy, and at the core, perhaps the most fascinating aspect of the character I am to them is my ability to be all of these things so effortlessly.
In the eyes of my friends and acquaintances, I am all of those things, yet they have a more clear and concise view of what drives me. They know me as a man who is careful, yet in love with chaos, a man who has a deep passion and respect for possibility, to such an extent that I invest in the potential in others so that they too might see the potential in themselves.
In the eyes of my lovers, I am thoughtful, generous, kind, compassionate, and exponentially patient.
To me, my greatest work of art has been, is at this moment and will be, god willing, for quite some time to come, my life as a human being. I did not always have ambitions to be an artist. When I was a boy, I wanted to be a geneticist. My Grandfather, a prominent doctor in Atlanta and graduated atomic physicist would share with me in my childhood, knowledge of quantum-electro dynamics and genetic coding, among many other fascinating subjects.
As I grew older I found an overwhelming need to connect with others, to be social. I found it difficult to relate to others as most of my peers were into sports and school agenda, while I was contemplating riddles of the universe and how everything interacts with everything else. I have painted hundreds of paintings, sold them all over the world, written countless poems, produced a handful of short films, authored a children’s book and novel, and hosted events to showcase all of my works throughout my time. Knowing all of this I feel what is important is not specifically what I’ve done or why I do what I do, but what it is that I find enjoyable in what it is about art and creating that I find beautiful.
Painting is to me as breathing is to you. I see everything as a painting; it is my way of expressing my perception of the world. I am married to it. There are times I am in love with it and when I am painting, it is as if my soul were making love to the art form itself. There are times I hate it because there is only so much it can offer me. As we all know, the grass is always greener on the other side of the fence.
When I step out of my studio, put down the paintbrush and pick up a pen, I find my mistress. I cheat on my true love with the written word. While I feel guilt and shame in betraying what I love and respect so much, I do find in writing, a certain vulnerability, an emotional understanding, and most of all a way to create what colors cannot.
Much as a man would have a wife and perhaps a mistress, yet his passion were working on a hot rod or his sailboat in his spare time, this is how I feel about producing cinema. It is my secret passion. It is something I feel inferior in and yet love to do. When I have the time, I run with it the only way I know how. The beauty in my film work is hardly in its content, clever as it may be, but it’s the process in which I go about producing them that I love the most.
Who am I? People spend their entire lives searching for that answer and the truth is that there is no answer. All that is, is all we have, it’s what we make of it that counts. We are all artists in our own right, expressing how we feel about what we are perceiving and our place in the universe.
Constantly trying to identify and label everything. At the end of the day, at the end of this article, even at the end of this sentence, I really don’t care who I am, because I am anything I allow myself to be, which, for every aspect of the concept, is creation itself.
Love for all of you,
I had a pupil of mine stop by for a session yesterday and we went over the points highlighted in my Art of Happiness article from several months ago. One of the parts he had difficulty with was loving himself. I felt, as I aim to progress sharing the concept of a Life Diet with all of you, that this is one of the key elements to being successful in the endeavor.
It's interesting to me that it could be such a difficult thing to love oneself. We all grow up in contrasting social developments and yet in them, we have one common veil that blinds us all. The only real way to grow as a spiritual being is to think and feel as the soul that you are. We must separate yourself from the idea of being a mere animal foxtrotting about with a material purpose and obligation to the benefit of others before ourselves. I realize that last part sounds a bit bold, but as a dear friend told me once upon an epiphany, "The best way to help others is to help yourself."
Let's dive into the construct of the veil that blinds us. There are two kinds of paradigms that should be noted first.
1. Those who attempt to desperately control their reality, which is an impossibility, thus futile and a negative.
2. Those who create their reality, which is encumbered by endless possibility, a positive.
The veil that blinds us in the trial of identity itself. When we are born we know only the love of our maker and beyond that, there is a constant battle of people vying for identifying us as extensions of their own ego.
Imagine being a guest in a new country. You don't know the language and everyone is dressed in outfits you've never seen before. They have cultural traditions that make no sense at all. All of them want you to be like them, wear their outfits, speak their tongue, and take part in the activities that make them feel as though they are one with something. That is you the moment you are born.
The best thing to do, as difficult as it is and insane to comprehend at first is to try to realize just how much you do not know, for example, you know just as much about what is going on inside of you as you do the strange and miraculous world around you.
The body is a machine. The mind is a computer. The soul is the operator. That was the hard part, the rest is easy. First of all, you have to disassociate the labels of the constructs in your memory data storage in order to begin the process of self-ratification, then, re-identify those pre-existing constructs with labels you identify with as your own.
Think back to when you saw your first circle. If this is difficult, fast forward to the first time someone identified that object as a circle. This person is responsible for defining how you think to this day.
Disassociate this memory. Forget that person and their label for that object. Call it whatever you wish, you may even call it a circle, but it is your label now, your construct.
Repeat this step for every single construct in your data core. Fundamental objects are like elements, they are constructs for complex real time parameters, just as elements are used to create complex compounds.
Unraveling this a bit further, understand what it means that your mind is a computer. It utilizes hardware, software, electricity, etc. When you disassociate your pre-existing labels you are free to see your mind at work and how every moment you are associating, referencing, labeling, filing, and documenting the world around you.
The goal now, is to isolate the various programs at work, they will be running simultaneously or triggered after certain circumstances. Isolate, identify, prioritize and execute new commands.
Take a moment now to soak all of that in. The universe doesn't understand labels. It isn't in its language. All it knows is beauty because the universe is a constant explosion of perfect moments becoming new perfect moments becoming new perfect moments becoming new perfect moments, etc.
Self love is accepting that you are another perfect moment of the universe, you are the universe, just as your nose is you, your toes are you, your eyes are you, your atoms are you, all of those are part of the universe. When you step in front of a mirror, pass by a window, or look over the side of a boat into ununscathed waters and to see your reflection, all you should see is the beauty of the universe at work.
When you see that, tell me, what's not to love?
chapter eleven : The direction of love
Water hurts when you haven’t had it in a long time and you’ve been running most of the day. It almost makes your mouth drier after it’s swallowed. My eyes are closed tightly as I try to suck water out of my cupped hands. The small pool of water I found is my salvation for the moment while I catch my breath and quench my thirst. I feel compelled to look back from where I came just to retrace my footsteps. Out of exhaustion, I just sit, drinking and breathing heavily. Sometimes these human bodies really suck. Everything in me is screaming, GO! GO! GO! And this body just whimpers, no, no, no. Looking back is a waste anyway, I know full and well where I came from, it’s where I’m headed that matters.
The sun sparkles in the pool like a thousand splinters in the ripples as my hands drop water I didn’t drink. The sparkles remind of the stars on a particular night. I lose myself in the splinters of the sun dancing in the water, I find myself in a memory…
It’s night, before we sleep, we smoke a cigarette and share stories of different pasts but similar views and when she speaks my soul is warmed by her energies many hues.
When I hold her in my arms, it feels just right. It feels like I’m not forcing it and its just falling into place like perfect puzzle pieces placed by practiced puzzle players. I love to feel the warmth of her body entangled with mine as she falls asleep. It charges my heartbeat with a quick pulse of excitement because I know she has such a hard time sleeping but in our embrace her rest is deep and soothing.
I get home from working, the bed is made, laundry is put in the closet and all I can think of is how I could have this forever.
The night before, we laid silent for a good bit of time before we exchanged a particular kind of dialogue, the quiet of the night kind, the hide how you feel but still this certain level of intimacy kind. I reach for her and she comes to me. I hold her. My head nuzzled against hers, my arm wraps around her tummy like a safety belt, my legs tangled into hers and I hear her thoughts change rapidly. From there, my soul scans her body and I feel the beating of her heart racing, the quickness of her breath. She is excited, anxious, and nervous of the moment that she is held by me. In her mind she is talking to me. There is more to this than she speaks of. She does not know how she feels about me. She knows the power I have is the doorway to her greatness and somewhere in that she is curious if I will kiss her.
When we talk, we feel compelled to be honest and withhold nothing; we are scared that after finding endless connections to each other that the road will end; the honesty will pay off and pave miles more.
The lining of my stomach turns inside out to evaluate the overwhelming population of butterflies when I take a moment to look through her eyes. Her eyes are hungry for the power within me, she wants it, wants to learn of it and rise to her potential. She loves me for this possibility and because I am so giving to her.
I know that I love her, not for the reasons she loves me, but love nonetheless. I can’t seem to choose to love her as my student, sister, or lover.
I am afraid to love her as my lover.
I am afraid I already do.
I can’t see the city in the horizon yet but I can tell by the vibrations in the ground I’m going the right direction. My heartbeat has slowed with my resting and I push hard again. I can feel my heart pummel into everything it surrounds with every new beat and every beat brings me closer.
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