About face

by Sarah Luna

Lessons learned (or revisited) this weekend:

  1. I need to chill out. I’m getting worked up about stupid things.
  2. When I need to talk to my roomie, I should just call her. Even if it’s 2am. We’re here for each other. (Eerily, we timed our crises in the middle of the same night…and then didn’t call each other because we assumed the other would be contentedly asleep.) (Crises have been resolved, btw.)
  3. I need to focus more on the beauty in my life.

All three of these revelations occurred between 12am Saturday and 12am Sunday. Yeah, that’s how crazy my weekend was.

Anyways, I wanted to focus on the third point. A friend invited me to “Beyond the Canvas”, a lecture about the connection between art and spirituality. Gran, you would have loved it. The speaker emphasized that art is selfless. It comes from the heart as an expression of love. He extended “art” to include anything and everything we invested ourselves in–not just the fine arts.

Rather than seeing ourselves as primarily intellectual beings (homo sapiens), he challenged us to think of ourselves as loving beings driven by our hearts instead of our brains.

The heart expresses itself in three ways: intellect, emotion, and will. The intellect searches for truth, and the result is science. The emotion searches for beauty, resulting in art. And the will searches for goodness, resulting in ethics and morality. Each person has these three parts, but one is often dominant. He stressed the necessity of balance between the three parts.

I should add here that he is a practicing martial artist and explained balance as only a martial artist could. I admit I liked him more because of this.

Art is selfless. Art has a purity of purpose. Art is blessed. Giving truth, giving beauty, giving goodness equates to giving love.

My studies are my art–my gift. And it was inspiring to be charged once again to take up this love of learning for the pure artistry of it. Now, you only have to look at my last two “intellectual” posts to see the about face that happened this weekend. I had been getting mired in the technical aspects of my craft and had nearly lost sight of my true purpose.

I was making things too complex. In the fabulous words of my roomie: “God is simple. We’re the ones who like to complicate things.” So true. So this week, I’m going to step back and simply try to appreciate the beauty around me. Because it’s all around me–in my daily walks, in my studies, and most importantly in the people who care for me.