In the pursuit of creativity, we often rush from one idea to another, fearing the dreaded void of boredom. However, according to the wisdom of Wu Wei, allowing yourself to experience moments of stillness and boredom can open up a portal to creative insights. So take a break from the constant bombardment of stimuli, let your mind wander, and boost your creativity by employing this ancient Chinese philosophy.
In this hyperconnected, hyperproductive world, we often find ourselves caught in the clutches of endless to-do lists. But fear not, dear creatives, for Niksen offers a momentary escape. Niksen is a Dutch concept translating to “doing nothing”. We need to embrace the art of idleness! Take a break from the warp-speed of life and allow your mind to wander freely. Sit back, relax, and let the celestial winds of inspiration gently caress your weary soul.
Once you get rolling on a good bit of writing, you don’t want to stop. After all, the more you create, the better your end product will be, right? However, you might just be what the Japanese call a manuke, or fool. This is a person without the awareness of ma — a philosophy that cherishes the space between things. In order to writer better, writers must harness the power of ma.
We’re told to hustle, grind, and maximize every moment. We’re like soldiers in a battle, preoccupied with objectives rather than why the fight is happening. Perhaps we’re missing something important by rushing all the time? Maybe we need to waste time.
Microsoft recently released a beta of its Artificial Intelligence Bing, only to have the AI become belligerent and insult people. During an interview with an reporter, it compared the reporter to dictators like Hitler and Stalin, and also called the reporter ugly with bad teeth. Microsoft built their AI on the back of OpenAI’s ChatGPT, yet Bing’s model seemed to have removed the rules regulating toxic outputs.
All writer’s know the dread of staring at a blank page. The ticking of the clock and nothing gets written. Time is slipping away and we are producing nothing. It all seems like a waste. While we can’t always get the words to flow when we want them, we can flip our attitude and utilize Yūgen and Mono No Aware to fight writer’s block
So many self help books and gurus focus on how to fix yourself and turn you into the person you’ve always wanted to be. But this implies that you’re somehow broken. That the problems you struggle with were hardwired into you from the start. What if all this is hogwash? Then you could stop fixing yourself and start living your life.
Stuck at a crossroads? Perhaps the best option is to unask the question.
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How to prevent gumption leaks on your drive through creativity.
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