Creative Courage– what will save us?

Tonight a friend of mine, Lou, and her mother watched “Avatar” and she was fired up afterwards. She is often fired up– I love this about her– and she can motivate others just with the passion she has in her creative writings, speech and leadership. She synthesizes so many different aspects of society as a whole: global society, not just the society in which she exists. She sees the detrimental aspects of globalization, of the drive for oil and industrialization, and the rape of nations natural resources (from minerals in the earth to the humans and insects that live there). The thing is, when sitting around brainstorming about what to do and how to do something about all of this negativity happening in the world, she comes up with some AMAZING ideas. Not just flights of fancy, but really creative, pleasant, nurturing, healthy ways to make a community whole, and have it reach out to other communities with open arms, instead of with arms and ammunition. I think, given half a chance, she is going to make big changes in many many peoples lives. She has the courage to do it. I want to go along for the ride. Check out her website here:

Rollo May said it best in The Courage to Create, published in 1975:

“This brings us to the most important kind of courage of all. Whereas moral courage is the righting of wrongs, creative courage, in contrast, is the discovering of new forms, new symbols, new patterns on which a new society can be built. Every profession can and does require some creative courage. In our day, technology and engineering, diplomacy, business, and certainly teaching, all of these professions and scores of others are in the midst of radical change and require courageous persons to appreciate and direct this change. The need for creative courage is in direct proportion to the degree of change the profession is undergoing.

But those who present directly and immediately the new forms and symbols are the artists – the dramatists, the musicians, the painters, the dancers, the poets, and those poets of the religious sphere we call saints. They portray the new symbols in the form of images – poetic, aural, plastic, or dramatic, as the case may be. They live out of their imaginations. The symbols only dreamt about by most human beings are expressed in graphic form by the artists. But in our appreciation of the created work – let us say a Mozart quintet – we are also performing a creative art. When we engage a painting, which we have to do especially with modern art if we are authentically to see it, we are experiencing some new moment of sensibility. Some new vision is triggered in us by our contact with the painting; something unique is born in us. This is why appreciation of the music or painting or other works of the creative person is also a creative act on our part.”

Published in: on April 12, 2010 at 7:31 am  Leave a Comment  

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