I wasn’t planning to write a blog post today, but an email in my inbox this morning changed all that. You might say it blew my socks off.
One of my friends turned me on to an inspirational email blast by a man named J. Michael Dolan. I read them each day and find he usually is telling me exactly what I need to hear. He also sees life in a different way, one that closely aligns with how I see it and I have had the good fortune of exchanging a couple of emails with him.
This morning I read a response from him to my email commenting on his blog post “Choke, Stall and Flinch“. I had remarked on how true I found the line in it “The one thing we artists & treps have in common is that we worry about the future. Why? Because we’re charged with inventing it from nothing—then we stake our entire livelihood on it.”
His response to it left me in tears. I felt like someone really understood just what it is like to be an artist. But more, what the world itself is really like. You see, life is like our art. We create it from nothing, it only seems that it is the world around us that dictates our actions.
Then I re-read his blog post and saw the missing piece, where I have been making my mistake. You see, we do create our futures, but we also create what we don’t want as well. I will be moving to my goal, something will occur and I put my attention on it instead. I will flinch, and in that instant I’ve lost. I put my attention on the barrier, the problem, the upset with whoever, the threat coming in at me – instead of the goal – and what I object to becomes more real. I put more effort into trying to solve it and it grows more formidable. The goal is lost as long as I try to solve the problem instead of simply moving forward to the goal.
I can explain this best by likening it to the Matrix. While there are many key points there in regard to this, such as the line about “…seek to see the truth. There is no spoon. Then you will see it is not the spoon that changes, it is only yourself.” Or when Neo is bleeding after the jump scene and Morpheus says “The mind makes it real…” and the line about “I’m trying to free your mind.”
There is a point in the movie that was not spoken that I now see. Who built the Matrix in the first place? Well, it was built by the people it now enslaves. And that is the key. Once you take responsibility for creating it, you are free to control it. It can no longer harm you. The Matrix exists only because it is being created by those who fight it.
What we experience is what we create. It may seem otherwise, but that is the simple truth of the matter. And the things we create are those that we put our attention on, whether that be past misfortunes, something we object to in the present… or something we desire inn the future that did not previously exist. Freedom, or lack of it, depends on which we choose to do. As Morpheus said, “free your mind” and choose to create the future you desire.
The photo I am posting with this is part of a series I am working on along this very line. It is an effort to communicate the role of the spirit to the material world and just how illusionary this world is. And I urge you, if you work in any of the arts, or are an entrepreneur, or simply have a dream or ambition beyond being a cog in the 9 to 5 work a day world, click one of the links above and start reading Michael’s blog. What you will get out of it will be different… but it will be what you need to get.
The Mind Makes it Real, copyright Mark Stout