If you have the privilege to watch a child take his first step, you have witnessed raw creativity happening. The child joins the vertical human race and experiences a new perspective on reality. Their newly upward mobile position in life is full of potential.
As this same child progresses, there are many firsts: first day of school, first love, first heartbreak, first competition, first job and first visit to a far-away place. When the child transitions into adulthood, life offers less and less “first” experiences. While life is always changing, it is very easy for us to resist the change and get stuck in a routine. When we get stuck in the dryness of a routine we can lose our youthful essence and forget about the potential exploration that comes along with new experience.
When dust covers the soul, life can feel humdrum. That dust may be years of suffering in a certain situation or years of struggle that slowly diminishes that creative spark. We forget that each day is a new experience and opportunity, and that there are things to be learned and discovered about ourselves, and the world around us.
Some people change jobs frequently to find excitement in life. Others seek new romance and never really settle down because they become addicted to the potential of intimacy with a new person. Some people take to new hobbies; others jump from one spiritual path to another, each time equally excited about the promise of the new endeavor. What many of these people have in common is that they cannot break the patterns within themselves so they try to break the patterns outside themselves.
To keep us balanced in the spiritual and material worlds, we must find a harmony between consistency and newness. This is key as both are good in moderation. As we dedicate ourselves to the spiritual life, consistency is an important virtue. Running from one spiritual path to another is akin to running from our problems, and getting into a rut in the path that we are currently walking is also a problem.
When we find the right spiritual practice, it can be a place for us to find daily inspiration. When we are tuned in to our inner landscape, we become connected to an unending source of creative energy – the desire to establish a relationship with the mysterious forces that govern life. Some call this energy God, the Universe, Nature or Mastery of the Ego. It doesn’t matter what form we resonate with, only that it helps us to cope with our hurts and potential boredom. As we face ourselves, we become empowered to understand ourselves and find creative solutions to our problems.
Even more so, whenever we ask ourselves the big questions like “why are we here?” and “where does the universe come from?” and “what happens when we die?” we tap into the greatest creative force of all – a childlike sense of wonder that revels in the concepts of beauty, love and freedom, and a willingness to explore these concepts with an open heart and mind, knowing that we may never find an answer to our questions. This process is creativity at work in our lives, and allows us to see the mysterious in the mundane and vice-versa.
One exercise that can help you get in touch with this mysterious energy is to take a walk in your backyard. Clear your mind before going out and imagine that you are an alien creature who has just landed on the planet for the first time. Look at everything that you find through the eyes of a curious observer trying to discover what the object is – use your senses to inform you of it’s qualities, feel free to listen, smell, taste, touch and see. Examine the objects that you encounter slowly, with the eyes of a young child. Done with full suspension of disbelief, you will find yourself spending 10 minutes examining a rock that on any other day you might not even notice.
Use your spiritual practice to get in touch with the creative forces that are already at work in your life. They are there, whether you recognize them or not. Remain open minded, and you will be rewarded with a sense of wonder and a source of boundless joy!