The landscape of our minds is erratic ground. This past week I walked down the path of joyful, fearless creativity, negotiated a murky swamp of doubt, slipped into despair, climbed up to a zenith of fulfillment only to tumble back down into despair again. What is the point of all this chaos? Why do I paint at all?
It’s true that I’m not always kind or loving toward myself or others. I have expectations. Usually, these expectations start out as good intentions, like the decision to start a new habit or giving advice to a friend who needs help. Frustration sets in when these things don't turn out as expected. I get angry with myself or resentful toward the friend (who probably wasn't even aware of my expectation). Sometimes I wonder if I know how to love at all. When I'm going in the wrong direction I need to ask myself what the point is and recalibrate. The point is love.
As I write this I'm sitting on my porch swing enjoying the warm air, watching the hummingbirds and thinking about life. I love this. This is Joy. Appreciating this moment is my Purpose. Yes, I want to make a living painting beautiful, powerful paintings, but it starts with moments like this. Catching a flicker of... something in the eyes of an animal, feeling sunshine, or sharing a laugh with a loved one. These moments bring tears to my eyes. It's all love.
It's with this kind of love that we need to approach life and let everything flow from there. Life is a series of moments that can be viewed through the lens of love or the lens of disappointment. Time will pass either way. Viewed through the lens of love, we don't have to be perfect. We can release our expectations. How much we have or don't have, or how someone else is or isn't living their life is irrelevant. Our inner landscape is no longer so treacherous. We are free to fly.
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