Tuesday, February 10, 2015

CONVERSATIONS: THE SILLINESS OF PLAY

I ran across some notes I jotted down in response to a prompt from the book Soulistry - Artistry of the Soul: Creative Ways to Nurture Your Spirituality.
As I read through my thoughts and ramblings, many secret messages were found and explored further. And so with that thought ...

THE PROMPT: the silliness of play ...
The first thing that popped into my head is one of my favorite reminders to the hubby: "all work and no play makes for Kay a very dull day." Of course, as an aside, his reply is "no workie - no eatie."

However, on a more serious note, I have always realized the importance and value in making sure there is playtime scattered here and there throughout our days. I also recognize people will define "play" in their own terms. When I'm faced with a particularly long "work session" I know if I can re-frame my attitude to one that is more playful the day or the task passes more quickly.

There are a couple of sentences from the journal prompt that really resonated with me: 
  • When we play, we celebrate holy uselessness.
  • When we forget to play, we've forgotten the joy of creation.
I have always struggles with understanding people who have no fire or creative passion in their bones. There is no drive or uncontrollable hunger and thirst to create. How can that be? I do believe everyone is born with an innate passion or a desire/need to create. Am I just not recognizing it as it manifests itself in their terms? My need to create is so strong that I wither and die within my very soul if I don't spend time creating every day. I have a mental picture of myself being drug to my chair/desk and tied in with ropes and shackles when I have mundane routine (usually book-work) tasks that I have to do. Maybe I need to do some serious re-framing in this department. LOL

When I am deep in the creative state it can be very meditative and an all-consuming focus captures my very soul. I loose track of time; I forget to eat and suffer little from hunger or distractions. If I'm not careful I can be so very engrossed in my creative play that I can become physically ill from exhaustion. I have learned the importance of using a timer and taking scheduled breaks. 

In taking a second look at my thoughts regarding the prompts and material in this chapter, I find myself writing mostly about creating but not much about the "silliness" of play. It takes courage to allow the silliness to surface and be exposed to our "public." The struggle ... quieting the voices ... those inner monsters judging the value and purpose of the time we spend on our silliness and play. My silly playfulness - the spirituality of play comes about when I open up my mind to all the possibilities of what could be, my willingness to experiment and try new things, my willingness to "throw it up on the wall and see what sticks."

My creative endeavors are vast and varied and can at times drive me to distraction because I want to "do" all of them and there is never enough time. In the kitchen, at my art desk, at the quilting machine, on the design wall ... I love experimenting with new flavors, new recipes, new techniques, new combinations, new concepts and ideas. I love learning new things. My biggest problem, according to my daughter, is that in this exuberant eager experimental state I can become quite evangelical, and so I've learned to corral my passions to a degree. I've learned when it is safe to share with unbridled joy and when to be still and let the work speak to those like-minded souls who might have the eyes to see and the ears to hear.

There isn't much that I miss much after moving 3000 miles across the country from the West Coast to the east Coast other than my artful-minded friends. "Back home" we had regular scheduled "play dates" with time to cavort across the canvas mark-makers, fabric, and thread in hand. We took classes together and delighted in our journal quilt group. The "play dates" and social connections now are different with more of an international flair hooking up with like-minded souls via the internet. I enjoy the solitude and the quiet studio time for introspection and reflection, but I miss the "silliness" and the human touch at times. In the plans: finding the balance and taking responsibility for stepping out of my introvert comfort zone in searching for "silly playmates." 

Good things to be had fostering "holy uselessness and creative silliness"
getting together both in-person and virtual gatherings.













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