Prompt on the Existence of Self

May 27, 2014
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Prompt – look at the relationship of “self” to the creative process. How do we bring all of our own lives into relationship with text and creativity—without being self-indulgent? When does the authoritative voice belong in the first person?

Always a vessel, always one, always interacting. It never stops. We are generative, creative, locomotion. Seared briefly in time and space as we in our language are able to perceive. Seeing a globe on one side precludes not the existence of the other. We can observe ourselves acting, reacting, but the one that does the looking and recording– is that the ‘I’ and where might it sit in the body and mind? Shaped by every physical gesture and perception is the physical mind via neurons and reactions, from the arm to the heart-space. It is clear that losing any physical part from which we can survive does not sever entirely the consciousness that we are — and yet, we are alive.

Life, a generative process if there ever was one. The creative big bang when god said the word a billion years ago last week, somehow leads to our little blue marble being at the visible center of everything we can imagine. Self, is all, or none. It rides on the line between 1 and 0, a tight rope walk along the yin-yang, balanced on that moment when you’re somehow watching everything and forgetting at the same time. Expansive and all inclusive. When flying Tie-Fighter joy stick style the force exists all around, and you can see the stars fly by. Yet so small, that you can bring it down to a point, because sometimes you know when you’re you and rolling your own style is on perfect tempo, metronome in tune with the sky.

Authors of any kind dictate creative paths, on the page or as a parent, breathing, being, and then past. Relating to yourself is a paradox, looking at yourself a hall of mirrors. As Shel Silverstein says: “Listen to the mustn’ts, child. Listen to the don’ts. Listen to the shouldn’ts, the impossibles, the won’ts. Listen to the never haves, then listen close to me… Anything can happen, child. Anything can be.”

Diving into art, life, and being – when create, we exist.

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Lee Frankel-Goldwater is a professional environmental educator, writer, and social good project developer as well as a recent graduate of NYU's Environmental Conservation Education masters program. Lee has also studied at the Center for Creative Ecology on Kibbutz Lotan, Israel and at the Arava Institute for Environmental Studies. Currently he has been leading development of the Global Action Classroom, an Earth Child Institute initiative focused on global youth environmental cooperation and helping to create the Global Sustainability Fellows, a program of The Sustainability Laboratory seeking to design a new and innovative, international sustainability masters program. Other projects include: developing mobile applications for encouraging social action, mixed media video design, leading peace and environmental education workshops, and doing his best to live a life in connection with the Earth while helping others to do the same. At heart Lee is a poet, traveler, musician, and philosopher with a deep curiosity for new experiences, unfamiliar cultures, learning languages, and often dancing to the beat of a different drummer. As student of yoga, meditation, and spiritual arts, Lee aims to connect the inner journey with the outer one, hoping, as he can, to share what is learned along the way, enjoying the journey.

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