Helped are those who create anything at all, for they shall relive the thrill of their own conception and realize a partnership in the creation of the Universe that keeps them responsible and cheerful.
- Alice Walker
The Temple of My Familiar
We were all born to create. The Universe is just one big container for the expression of all that is created. The one constant we know about our world is that it is constantly changing; that things are constantly being created. As a life coach and arts producer, I am continually a witness to creativity, change and transformation. I’ve come to see that while the several trillion cells of our bodies are continually dying and being replaced – constantly re-creating our physical forms – we human beings are also continually creating and re-creating our selves and our lives in every moment. Both in our choices about how we respond to our thoughts, and in the subsequent actions we choose, we are creating the factors that shape the experience of our lives.
We often think of creativity in the arts, yet not always in our everyday lives. However, we are constantly creating physical “things” from what we envision in our minds. Whether it’s a story, or a painting…whether it’s dinner or a peanut butter and jelly sandwich, everything created starts as a thought. Once realized, this object can then be appreciated, even if only by its creator. The size of the audience is not important. Whether it is that groove that sold millions of copies, or a song sung to you by your child or nephew; whether it is the novel written by a Nobel laureate, or those special words from a friend at just the right moment, each of these things has meaning. The creations we deem most powerful are those that inspire us personally, regardless of how many others they may inspire. (Trust: if that PBJ sandwich you make hits the spot just for YOU at lunchtime…)
True, the things that inspire many are often lauded and praised, but the power of creation is accessible to all of us. What Alice Walker speaks of in the quote above is conscious creation. In contrast to letting the forces of our history and circumstance determine the output of our creative energies, we can consciously conceive and make manifest something that wasn’t there before. We can then “realize a partnership in the creation of the Universe,” that constant of change happening around and within us. And this holds true for “those who create anything at all,” whether grand or small, seen by one or many. Each act of creation is a partnership in the creation of the Universe, and we are creating all the time: things, experiences, ideas. New stories; new relationships; new possibilities for our lives. So the question becomes, in each moment, what are you choosing to create?
As an arts producer, it is my privilege to witness the creative process of others. I see it as my work to create the framework and resources necessary to allow that creativity to be expressed. What I so love about our work in 48 Hours in Harlem, is that we producers co-create the container for others to maximize the expression of their own creativity. We participate by nurturing and supporting the talented creativity of the artists we gather. This thrill of our own conception would border on being selfish…if we didn’t know the joy it also brought to the 30 participating artists, and the fact that we get to share the fruits of the creativity with our audiences. Indeed, it takes all 200 or so of us – artists, crew and audience alike – to co-create the powerful Sunday evening that we experience each summer. Our audiences’ responses…their creations – the applause, the laughter, the gasps, the openness to the creation before them – are key elements in the co-creation of our universe that night.
We hope that everyone leaves inspired. For what is art if it does not inspire? Be it feelings or thoughts, laugher, tears or action, art is meant to inspire change, even if briefly. We humans are constantly in conversations about creating our tomorrows, and art is a particular type of creation that is consciously entered into, and sometimes interrupting, our often unconscious conversations. So yes, we hope that everyone leaves inspired…inspired to go out and create more: more art, more love, more life. Go. Experience your ability to create something. Relive the thrill of your own conception. Create a new poem that only you appreciate (or share it with others); create a new relationship with someone in your life (or renew an old one); create a new experience for yourself…don’t take the right way to work, try taking the left way.
Bryan E. Glover, a member of Harlem 9, is a life coach and arts producer, holding space and standing for the possibilities of others to create the lives they desire. Learn more at www.bryaneglover.com.