Monday, April 12, 2010

images from a recent hike

A half clothed three-year old, running ahead of you on the trail, his muddy feet and bare legs kicking behind him in the characteristic gait of the very young. He is chasing, with headlong abandon, after an imaginary friend named, "Now". Yep, "Now". All the while, he is yelling after his speedy friend, saying, "Get back here Now. Hey Now, Now, Now! Mommy, Now isn't listening to me!" "NOW get back here!". As far as I could discern, 'Now' was not a friend to stroll alongside, or chat mildly with about the weather or the quickening of spring all around. Rather, to simply keep Now in sight, one needed to maintain a dead run. Sadly, Now eventually disappeared over the horizon and was forgotten.
Well, the message wasn't lost. I am forever chasing after something.  In a hurry, I race after the time-piece wielding rabbit who dives as readily into his rabbit hole, out of sight. I have been thinking a lot about busyness, what drives it and why it is so invasive. I have been proverbially and literally chasing NOW for sometime, or running away from it. It is a sad state and just as ridiculous as the afore mentioned scenario that confronted me on a recent hike in Golden. Oh children. They manage to teach us the deepest lessons in the most simple of ways.

Friday, April 2, 2010

art is a process

I have been hearing and reading a lot of art chatter lately and one recurring theme is the theory that art isn't art until it is seen and received by another. The assumption is that art requires a dialogue between the piece and the public, transcending the embryonic sphere of conception and creation, born into the world- seen. I disagree. The theory negates the process and the journey of art. Often I find that creativity is one of the few acts that almost requires the doer to dissolve into the doing and the process becomes primary to the product. Watching the creative process can be more inspiring than the end result. It troubles me that we might define art solely in terms of a product. When a piece of art is born into the public sphere, it begins a new journey, independent of it's union with the artist and takes on a life of its own. That new creation is art, when seen it generates a relationship, uniting subject and object in ongoing dialogue (especially when it has something to say). I agree that a piece of art buried beneath a bed and left unseen is no longer dynamic. That needn't blind us to the power of the process or limit our definition of art, even if it is unseen, unheard and unnoticed. It is art. And art has the power to transform us even when no one else is looking.

Here is an example taken from this mornings exploration of art with Bodhi:
Bodhi began with a little paint on a brush, then on fingers, then on hands. In no time he was folding paper, making prints and drawing with pastels, chalk and pencil or scoring with fingernails and the ends of brushes. After a while it wasn't enough to simply sit. He climbed on the table to get closer to his work, all the while I stood by, in rapture.
The journey is ART.

farewell to the binkie take two

Okay, I know Bodhi is three now and it is time to let go of the binkie (aka mana) even if he uses it just for sleeping, but that doesn't make it any easier. We decided that the best thing to do was to deliver the two remaining mana's to the fairies. We found a special box and Bodhi placed his comforting old friends inside along with a few special notes to the fairies. We went for a hike in the red rock area. Bodhi found a special spot tucked away in a crevice and protected from the wind. He placed his special box there and we said a few blessings. We enjoyed a light picnic and climbed around for a while.
When we left Bodhi said good bye again with a spontaneous Namaste.
He slept 3 hours last night, crying in my arms.
Sometimes the process of growing can be painful.