I’ve watched many of his videos but this was my first of his books I’ve read. I will be reading many more over the next several years because each time I read something of his or listen to him, my life becomes richer.
This book, and all of his other books, were simply transcribed from his talks. I know of no other person who can simply speak and have the transcription become a beautiful book. He has within him an almost tangible quality of the divine.
This particular book deals with, of course, creativity. He explains his philosophy of being creative and teaches the reader how to become more creative, which is mainly by removing oneself from his own mind:
“Once you are empty then there is no barrier for the divine to enter in you.”
In other words, true creativity is not in the realm of the mind or the ego, but in the divine, and in order for us humans to be truly creative, we must stop being our human selves and let the divine flow freely through us.
When I think of creativity in this way, it makes a lot of sense. Often when looking upon great works of art by Michelangelo, or listening to symphonies composed by Mozart or Beethoven (just got chills while typing that), I often wondered how any human could possibly create anything so beautiful. It seems completely ridiculous! But I know now that these humans did not create those works of art. They were simply able to empty their minds and become mediums for divine creativity. They let the divine flow through them. They were, in a sense, simply portals from the divine into this base physical world. The result is that their creations elevated this world and enriched the lives of everyone who has had a chance to inhabit it.
I hope one day to be able to let the divine flow through me in some way. As I said in this post, we can be highly creative while doing anything at all, including seemingly mundane chores. And some of the most brilliantly creative acts have gone completely unnoticed by the world, but that’s okay because the end result is not the goal. The creative process itself is its own reward.
“Jean-Paul Sartre, one of the great novelists and a man of tremendous insight into human psychology, refused the Nobel prize. He said, ‘I have received enough reward while I was creating my work. A Nobel prize cannot add anything to it — on the contrary, it pulls me down. It is good for amateurs who are in search of recognition; I am old enough and I have enjoyed enough. I have loved whatever I have done, it was its own reward.'”
And now a few more quotes from the book…
“And then immediately something starts happening, because hidden behind man is God. Just give him a little way, a little passage, to come through you. That is creativity — allowing God to happen is creativity. Creativity is a religious state.”
“Creativity simply means you are in a total relaxation. It does not mean inaction, it means relaxation — because out of relaxation much action will be born. But that will not be your doing, you will be just a vehicle. A song will start coming through you — you are not the creator of it, it comes from the beyond. It always comes from the beyond. When you create it, it is just ordinary, mundane. When it comes through you it has superb beauty, it brings something of the unknown in it.”
“A really creative person does not care a bit about becoming famous; there is no need. He is so tremendously fulfilled in whatsoever he is doing, he is so content with whatsoever he is and wherever he is, that there is no question of desire. When you are creative, desires disappear. When you are creative, ambitions disappear. When you are creative, you are already that which you always wanted to be.”
“Love what you do. Be meditative while you are doing it — whatsoever it is, irrespective of the fact of what it is. Then you will know that even cleaning can become creative. With what love! — almost singing and dancing inside. If you clean the floor with such love, you have done an invisible painting. You lived that moment in such delight that it has given you some inner growth. You cannot be the same after a creative act.”
“Being respected by idiots you have to behave according to their manners, their expectations. To be respected by this sick humanity you have to be sicker than they are. Then they will respect you. But what will you gain? You will lose your soul and you will gain nothing.”
And lastly, an idea I try to live by:
“So if you really want to be creative you will have to accept that you can’t be famous, you can’t be well known. If you really want to be creative, then you have to learn the simple phenomenon of “art for art’s sake,” for no other motive. Then enjoy whatsoever you are doing. If you can find a few friends to enjoy it, good; if nobody is there to enjoy, then enjoy it alone. If you are enjoying it, that is enough. If you feel fulfilled through it, that is enough.”
I can’t recommend this book highly enough, especially for those who are interested in creative endeavors, which in reality should be everyone. We were born to create.
Click here to purchase the book on Amazon: Creativity: Unleashing the Forces Within