Accumulation of You

Accumulation of you

What I love about art, is the process.  The process of choosing.  It feels like the only job I have experienced where it feels fantastic to be honest.  It’s a job where the point of being someone else is ridiculous.  Why choose art as a career if you are just going to copy someone else’s ideas for a living?  The experience of being overtly honest has some upside and downside.  The upside is that it can be a spiritually freeing experience to dump your passion into something that gives back to you via confession.  You don’t find yourself feeling stymied because you expressed “your” opinion.  It’s the only job I know where I feel comfortable taking off all my clothes hypothetically speaking to start my work day.  I can start my day by choosing to expose my most vulnerable me.  In the vulnerable me lies perhaps the awaking of something new, something not heard of, not seen before, not even created until you put yourself in front of the canvas mirror.  The joy and the fear all bundled in the same unescapable moment.

Then there is the downside of course.  The Accumulation of You.  The stuff you just can’t let go of.  The sentimental stuff you call You.  The heavy weighted expression of you.  The hoarding of you, the person you “think” you have to be in order to achieve your life goals.  I’m so happy that I am finally confessing to the fact that I am in the business of art and dreaming and all the fantastic things that come along with a creative lifestyle.  Yet, I have learned some bad habits from the world I have hidden in for so many years in the computer field.  I recall a recent discussion with a co-worker where I simply asked is there anything I can do to be a better supportive co-worker.  If I can paraphrase, His response was that he wanted me to know that what I do is fine, what would be nice is if I could do what I do without being so much of  “me”.  As if to say, everything is great except if you could just not be “you” it would be perfect!

So, to be clear about what he had just said, I paraphrased what I just said to him when I heard the conversation go straight to silence-mail.  I felt, I guess he is serious!  I pondered this for a little while as two things struck me in an emotional way.  (1).  How do I go about not being me and (2). What was he really saying when he asked me not to be me?  Was this an insult?  As an artist I thought, “hey this is the essence of what I do and I have to create!” This comes from a sense of who I am in a most creative and unique way.  That’s like saying don’t be your usual creative self!  Then, I let go of that thought to entertain the 2nd view which  just appeared to be an insult in a round about way.  Yet, I experienced something about me in that moment that I had not in a long time… the accumulation of me.  That which shows up (me) has a lot to do about my position more than it does about being (experiencing) in the moment.  I could see that from his point of view I may have looked more like “me” the “accumulation of things”, “the way I have hidden behind the stuff”,  rather than own up to just the simplification of me.  The person who can show up with absolutely no attachments.  Truly naked and vulnerable and willing to reinvent who I am this very moment for lack of attachments or the notion of the picture of who I paint I am.  I believe what he was seeing was all the “stuff” I have accumulated in life that makes me who I am and all the conversation about me being supportive was hard to see with all the “stuff” or “things”  I “hoard” seeping out the other side of my philosophical mouth.  This was an experience of “me”  in my supportive chant.

Having to give up who I am… What’s so bad about that?  What’s so big of an investment that I feel I can’t reboot or start over?  What I am actually doing now is a complete reboot anyway.  I have been in the computer field for the last 35 years and I want to finally do what really speaks to me without an accumulation of pre-fabricated thinking I call “me”.  Would it truly hurt so badly to not be me all the time?


5 Replies to “Accumulation of You”

  1. I never could not be me. Somehow the me I held in check to perform as dictated by conventional rules always burst through the prison walls of workaday have tos, when I literally could do nothing to make it palatable. At that point, I poured these desires into writing thoughts hidden between the lines of poetry or letters to myself. Even the requirements of the straight and narrow business of writing according to government specifications could escape the artist mind that colored everything I did. For me the epiphany was that nothing could cure my incessant desire to create the way I had dreamed, nor bring satisfaction but to produce art, even if it brought near poverty. Why live to fulfill the illusion of success, while dying of a longing only art can satisfy. Ainsi soit-ils.

    1. Beautifully stated. Your having writing as a skill has reinforced your awareness of you. I can relate to your view on this subject. I think I’m compelled to look at myself — outside myself. It is a risk of comfort. The constant familiarity of who I claim I am. Choosing to look at myself as an empty canvas as well as the canvas being empty as I seek to explore my next piece of work. I feel burdensome with all that I possess and am willing to give it all away for a higher calling. The sum of all of my wisdom is no greater that the view I try to maintain as true. In essence, It either is or it isn’t. If I need to defend it or it is a ride on a horse in the direction he is not going, the illusion is that I’m riding a horse but the ride feels exhausting. I have experienced the Accumulation of me and I feel exhausted.

  2. Your comment on the accumulation of you makes me think of a baby chick, fully formedbut not yet emerged from the shell of his original home. When he finally cracks that shell, he emerges looking a little bedraggled , but free of his nurturing prison, where all is an accumulation of himself. He shakes himself off and walks a bit, and alas the prison is empty with only a drying yellow membrane. He has become another more beautiful creature, soft and full of life, with no need for the one protective coating. He never goes back, the shell has dissolved into the universe.

    1. You see so clearly Thelma. The accumulation of “me” is having the ability to see where I am today and stepping outside of what was forming comfort to experience the challenge of newness and freedom from the idea that all I could do was survive in a shell of protection that I once knew my life to be.

  3. This, I think is the thought behind ever deep emotional intelligent intellectual I have ever talked too! What a wonderful thing to put it in words the way you have! So may just put themselves down because others have not understood them.

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