Art like prayer is a hand outstretched in the darkness, seeking for some touch of grace which will transform it into a hand that bestows gifts.
I haven’t defined a self, nor do I want to. A self is not something static, tied up in a pretty parcel and handed to the child, finished and complete. A self is always becoming. Being does mean becoming, but we run so fast that it is only when we seem to stop — as sitting on the rock at the brook — that we are aware of our own isness, of being. But certainly that is not static; for this awareness of being is always a way of moving from the selfish self — the self-image — and towards the real.
So, when we wholly concentrate, like a child in play, or an artist at work, then we share in the act of creating. We not only escape time, we also escape our self-conscious selves.
Creativity is an act of discovering. The very small child, the baby, is still unself-conscious enough to take joy in discovering himself: he discovers his fingers; he gives them his complete, unself-conscious concentration.
Mostly, no matter how inadequate my playing, the music is all that matters: I am outside time, outside self, in play, in joy. When we can play with the unself-conscious concentration of a child, this is: art: prayer: love.
When we are self-conscious, we cannot be wholly aware; we must throw ourselves out first. This throwing ourselves away is the act of creativity.
What triggers a person to open up to a later, more complex stage of consciousness? According to the research, the trigger for vertical growth always comes in the form of a major life challenge that cannot be resolved from the current worldview.
In their exploration, they found consistently that humanity evolves in stages. We are not like trees that grow continuously. We evolve by sudden transformations, like a caterpillar that becomes a butterfly, or a tadpole a frog.
Human consciousness evolves in successive stages; there is no wishing away the massive amount of evidence that backs this reality.
Never before in human history have we had people operating from so many different paradigms all living alongside each other.
In my view, multiple representation of the same territory give a better approximation of what we are charting than any one by itself.
The main idea is that, while growing up, a person often has powerful and emotional experiences that inform their worldview and personality development.
According to the Heath brothers (and all the research they cite in their book), most of these “paradigm shifting” experiences during a person’s teens, 20’s, and begin tapering off during a person’s 30’s.
However, the Heath brothers explain that this doesn’t need to be the case. You can actually manufacture these experiences regularly, and throughout your entire life.
The reason most people stop having “peak experiences” — which according to Dr. Abraham Maslow, is required to become fully actualized as a person — is because they settle into societal norms.
They stop growing.
They stop putting themselves into wildly new and demanding situations.
Benjamin P. Hardy
3 Ways People Become Stuck, Undeveloped, and Unsuccessful
The ego is a way of organizing oneself.
And the ego likes certainty, security…it likes repetition.