Wednesday, January 16, 2008

The Creative Edge

By Andrew Cohen
What Is Enlightenment Magazine

Truly creative people are always pushing the edge. If you see very talented musicians lost in spontaneous improvisation, they'll often tell you that in that state something comes over them. There's a certain place they describe out of which all authentic creativity springs—a mysterious point between the present and future, where a deeper current is flowing. This place is alive with the thrill of the unknown, full of risk and insecurity. It's the very point where something comes from nothing.

In order to create something new, a risk has to be taken, a leap beyond the known. And the thrill of that creative leap is a very impersonal human experience. Great artists, writers, musicians, scientists, engineers, athletes and many others all experience this same thrill. We find that we feel most alive, most liberated, when we're expressing our own creativity, pushing the edge in the right way for the right reasons. This potential for creativity seems to be an inherent part of the human capacity. The creative process is an evolutionary process. When you experience the creative impulse awakening in your self, it's no different than the original impulse that became the whole universe. It's nothing less that the Big Bang itself, working in you and through you. That's why it is always so thrilling.

Now, it is one thing to take the risk to leap beyond the known in music, art, writing—in any kind of temporary process where we are creating something. But in an evolutionary context, we want to aspire to a relationship to life itself that would be constantly creative. I'm not just talking about creativity with a canvas or with a musical instrument. I'm talking about creativity with our own souls. It's much more challenging. There's no time out. You can't put the brush or the instrument down and go back to your safe, secure, ordinary life. Living like this requires a radical letting go and a kind of care that few people dare to even consider. It means perpetually living right on the cutting edge of the life process—where the flowering of spirit as evolution is occurring in every moment.

It's ultimate creativity of self in a total response to life.

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