Your Muse likes it RAW

Creativity requires fuel.

The less refined the fuel – the better.

There’s nothing stimulating about sterility. Nothing thought-provoking about safety & consistency.

The muse craves the muck & grime of the world… the pain, sorrow, & all the grossness that we’re so prone to pretending does not exist.

The injustice, inequality, hatred, ugliness etc… it makes you think.

Makes you compare & contrast. Look at things in a new light & dimensionalize your life & everything in it.

7 or so years ago, I was gallivanting around New York City.

It was late – 2am or so – and I needed to catch a train to Brooklyn to the couch I’d been offered to sleep on.

It was me and another young white guy, standing on the subway platform. In my memory he was wearing a suit – though why he would be in a suit at 2am, I couldn’t tell ya.

I had a ukulele (I carried it everywhere & played constantly).

The subway pulled up, screeched to a halt, & my fellow commuter & I stepped through they sliding doors into what looked like an empty car…

Right into a wall of hot putrid stench. The smell of (unhealthy) human feces.

Immediately, we saw the source of the smell at the same time – an old black dude, clearly homeless and clearly not in his right mind.

He rocked back and forth in his seat, eyes wide & staring at nothing, chanting a mantra I’ll never forget…

“F*ck, nig*ah, f*ck…

Sh*t, nig*ah, sh*t…

Sh*t, nig*ah, f*ck…

F*ck, nig*ah, sh*t…”

…on and on and on.

The other white dude instantly changed cars, before the train even started moving.

I took a seat, watching the man. Basking in the smell of his illness & the sound of his incoherent, manic babbling…

& I started to play my ukulele.

Soft and sweet. A stark contrast to the scene I’d walked into… & together, this man and I created something strange & beautiful & terrible & sad & stinky & joyful all at the same time…

something no one else has ever created. Something no one else will ever experience.

Slowly, his babbling quieted. He stopped swaying. His eyes regained some focus… and a little smile formed on his lips.

We rode like that for 10 minutes or so. Me playing. Him listening. Training rattling. Robotic lady voice informing us of each stop. Doors sliding open occasionally to let in fresh air, and no more passengers.

He never spoke a word or acknowledged me. When we reached my stop, I stood and wished him a good night, and went my way.

Perhaps I could find some moral to this story for you… but I honestly don’t know if there is one.

The point is – it’s a story. A bizarre & experience I will always remember & find new nuances of meaning in for years to come…

& that I can now share with you…

Yet, my counterpart in the suit wanted NO part of the experience – thereby robbing himself of the thoughts, the feelings, & the memory that I now cherish.

Life isn’t supposed to smell like air freshener. There’s suffering all around, & it’s ours to share…

& even though it may be scary to face it head on… more often than not, it’s not going to hurt you.

It’ll only make you feel more ALIVE. More HUMAN. More CONNECTED.

It’ll make you think & truly FEEL in a way that no dramatic portrayal or documentary ever will…

& that true depth of FEELING will inspire you more than anything you’ll ever find in the safety of Normality.

Your Muse likes it RAW.

You’re Right.

How many seconds, minutes, hours, and days of your life do you spend doubting the validity of your beliefs & decisions?

How much time do you spend feeling frustrated or angry at people whose beliefs & decsions you judge to be “wrong,” while yours are “right?”

& how much emotional upset & suffering would you eliminate from your life if you ceased doubting your decisions & quit judging other people’s beliefs?

It’s human nature to divide ourselves into groups… somebody’s always right and somebody’s always wrong, right?

…WRONG. 😉

Truth is… there is no “Right” or “Wrong.”

There just… IS.

There’s no one “right” way of being in the world… because each and every one of us has our own one-of-a-kind way of being… each is changing and shifting from one moment to the next…

& each and every way of being is inherently RIGHT. Because they are the Truth of the moment. They are Reality.

And there’s no disputing Truth.

The beliefs of the people you disagree with did not arise within those people alone.

They were caused by conditions in the past and inherited in the here and now.

Right now there’s a prisoner on death row. You may look at him and call him “Bad” or “Wrong” for what he did years in the past…

But right now he’s just a dude sitting in a cold concrete room, longing for human contact. 

Forget the story, put yourself in his shoes in the here & now… Lonely & shivering… and it’s a lot harder to condemn.

Practice Compassion, Empathy, and living in the present moment and it becomes impossible to torture yourself with anger at people.

we are all just a product of the conditions that led to our existence.

We can’t help who our parents were, how our brains work, & how the experiences we’ve had shaped the paradigms through which we see the world.

Every single one of us is completely “Right” in the moment, because it’s the only way we can be.

So instead of doubting or judging yourself for past actions, or even the current conditions of your life…

& instead of looking at people that represent ways of being in the world that you don’t agree with…

Take stock of WHO you are & WHAT conditions are present in your life right now… what is TRUE…

and look to how you can direct the flow of that Truth toward the Truth that you desire for yourself in the future.