My current situation allows me to work on self-initiated projects and personal experimental videos. I do contracted work as videographer and editor for two days (16 hours) a week, and in the other time I freelance for various clients provided they need my services. I don’t have a busy work life yet so I am lucky enough to have some spare time for personal film-making and photography projects.
I really enjoy capturing life, both as videographer and photographer, and showing it through my creative eye in the form of a picture or sequence of pictures that tell a story. I get especially thrilled when my vision starts to take shape, for example when I’ve been keyframing motion graphics and play the result for the first time and it all comes to life.
I’ve been having doubts about investing my time into these self-initiated videos and photography ventures however. They do make me happy and improve my creativity but are they really worth the time? Whom would they benefit? Can they inspire at least one person?
I’ve been pondering over such questions until I asked myself whether I’d make films and take pictures if the whole world was blind and could never see my work. The answer was yes because of the amazing feelings I get when doing creative work. It is also worth doing it for life’s own beautiful sake. I feel I could transmit positive energy out of my creations even if no one is watching. Through film-making, I also believe I can show appreciation and gratitude to God for being alive and having the fortune to experience the beauty my senses encounter every day.
Last few books I’ve been reading have given me new perspectives on my creative hobbies. In particular, those books spoke about the connection between creation, God and human awakening, and the origins of true creativity. I now believe that my passion for film-making is not only a rewarding hobby and job but also a spiritual process that brings me closer to God and helps me evolve into a better ego-less person.
According to Eckhart Tolle (A New Earth, 2009) for example, I could connect with the Universe on a deeper level through any activity provided I stay present and do it in the awakened manner he writes about on page 294:
“Awakened doing is the alignment of your outer purpose – what you do – with your inner purpose – awakening and staying awake. Through awakened doing, you become one with the outgoing purpose of the universe. Consciousness flows through you into this world. It flows into your thoughts and inspires them. It flows into what you do and guides and empowers it.” (p.294)
Film-making and photography aren’t the only activities I love but they’ve heavily influenced on the way I live my life and the way I perceive things such as movement, light, colour and texture. I’ve become more observant. I have increasingly been finding joy in the little things in life such as cooking at home, walking around the neighbourhood, or sitting in the bus to work and looking through the window. According to Eckhart, it might be that the more I connect with the universe through awakened doing, the more the universe breathes life into me, suffocating my ego and bringing beauty and joy forward to my attention:
“It isn’t the action you perform that you really enjoy, but the deep sense of aliveness that flows into it.” (p. 298)
On the following pages, Eckhart explains that there is a lot of fun in simply being alive and being aware of the current of life in you and everywhere around you:
“To be more precise, what you are enjoying is not really the outward action but the inner dimension of consciousness that flows into the action. This is finding the joy of Being in what you are doing.” (p. 299)
Eventually, Eckhart reminds us all that whatever we do as a job or hobby or else, especially if creativity is involved, it has the power to bring other people closer to awakening and closer to God, who religiously speaking could be equated with the “unmanifested Source” in the excerpt:
“Feel how that activity enriches and deepens not only your life but that of countless others. Feel yourself being an opening through which energy flows from the unmanifested Source of all life though you for the benefit of all.” (p. 305)
The other book which I am still reading is called Creativity: Unleashing the Forces Within (1999) by Osho who writes that artists “absorb the universe in deep receptivity and then they pour whatsoever they have absorbed into their imagination.” (p. 66)
Shortly afterwards, Osho makes a good definition of what a true artist is, something I‘m striving for myself:
“… those who are the greatest are absolutely certain that they have been nothing but hollow bamboos and existence has been singing through them. They have been flutes but the song is not theirs. It has flowed through them, but it comes from some unknown source.” (p. 73)
And also that:
“A song is beautiful, a dance is beautiful because something of the divine is present in it.” (p. 83)
The last few excerpts above indicate that according to Osho true artists do not create their work. It comes from an “unknown source” which I believe is the same as what Eckhart refers to as the “unmanifested Source of all life”, and what religion would term God.
To summarize, Osho writes that creativity is living and creating in a deep connection with the universe (or God):
“That’s what creativity is: to pulsate in absolute harmony with the total. Things will start happening on their own. Your heart will start pouring songs of joy, your hands will start transforming things.” (p. 87)
“When your creativity comes to a climax, when your whole life becomes creative, you live in God. So he must be the creator because people who have been creative have been closest to him.” (p. 92)
To finalize this post, I’d like to quote Osho once more for realizing that God doesn’t just use us humans as tools for his creations for the sake of enjoyment but that God generously leaves part of himself in me and you as well:
“You become more divine as you become more creative.” (p. 92)
Videographer and Editor
Tolle, E. (2009) A New Earth. Penguin Books, UK.
Osho (1999) Creativity: Unleashing the Forces Within. St. Martin’s Press, New York.