Influence and Inspiration
Is it strange to discover that something or someone has been an influence on me and I didn’t realize it until they were gone? After all, humans like me only use about 10% of our brain so why would I be surprised that many things hold sway over me or inspire me unconsciously. Plus, dozens of movies have this missing-someone-after-they’re-gone plot.
David Bowie’s death hit me harder than I would have expected. It came in the doldrums of winter. His songs and videos are deeply entrenched in our culture. They are also in my psyche in more ways than I knew consciously.
I don’t like to think of myself as moody or easily affected.
Then again, it makes complete sense: I’m in the middle of multiple projects that are calling out my most varied artistic ideas and deepest sense of calling. Now that does mirror some facets of what made David Robert Jones so creative and attractively so. I hold that mirror up now to see the me who is walking into my own deepest, artful place and I celebrate that! (If you want to know more about my current projects, all you have to do is check out my various social media feeds and my NOW page. And if you want to know the full behind the scenes story, you’ll want to become a patron.)
Addictions and Distractions
Bowie was also an addict. Like so many creative folk, I have to be conscious and wary about my own addictive tendencies. Talk about influence. Essentially for me, addiction means failing to go to the places and do the practices that provide me with self-care; a friend of mine calls it “feeding the furnace”. We get to choose what we feed in our lives. We can feed the furnace of our passion or of our addictions. My intention is to choose those things that empower me to be the best person I can be. The times that I fall into distraction are getting shorter and further between. Thank goodness.
Falling into addictive behaviors also makes it more difficult to practice discernment. I know that in my life, it’s incredibly important to stay conscious and attentive to everything that is here in the present moment. That is not always an easy practice and requires a lot of self-compassion as I continue to learn about myself and my relationships.
But enough of this introspection! Over the holidays I derailed myself from focus on all of the major projects for the start of this year. I’m ready now to get those trajectories back on the center of my map of the coming days. The goals and projects will change over time, but the need to maintain both integrity and focus will always be at the core for me.
Please don’t assume that I’m always a heavy philosopher. I’m also a playful elf and you never know when I will shift into that mode. (Hmmm. Does that make me moody?) Hope you’ll join me for the rest of the ride…
9 thoughts on “Influence (or How The Death of a Celebrity Can Inspire)”
Ground control to Major Stan… 🙂
🙂 Exactly, my friend!
Hope you are well and that 2016 is looking stellar for you.
Best quote to take from this:
“Falling into addictive behaviors also makes it more difficult to practice discernment.”
Well-said, Stan, well-said.
Hmmm. That couldn’t be the voice of experience, could it?
Thanks for stopping by. I appreciate it.
I saw Bowie for the first time in 76′ Kiel Auditorium St Louis. What an eye opener ! All true artists in one fashion or another find their way in their time. Maybe not to the extent of Bowie or Van Gogh or Shakespeare or Davis or Da Vinci or the thousands of others who manage to inspire those that follow. What a Blessing to have experienced those we can in the present and the past. Those close to our psyche become almost an extended family. That has so much to do with the effect on us when they’re gone.
Not to dwell on the past, One can only imagine what the future holds ! Peace !
Beautifully said, Ralph! Thanks for reading my story and sharing yours.
…Glenn Frey, Maurice White… The list goes on and each one has a surprising impact.
I agree, Stan. Sometimes it’s surprising how much or even how little we can react.
Strangely, I was more affected by the death of Kurt Cobain than David Bowie. I wasn’t a Bowie fan, but liked Nirvana a lot. Courtney Love & Kurt Cobain lived in our neighborhood. The bench in the park below his home continues to be visited every day.
Thanks for the post!
Your connection to Cobain had a geographical connection and you were a fan. That makes such clear sense. I remember his death, too, (it is vivid in my memory) and it was certainly a musical turning point in many ways. It’s impressive that the bench continues to draw people to it after so many years.
I was surprised by the impact of Bowie’s death on me since I had not been a big fan. Just this past weekend, a friend played one of his songs and was puzzled that I did not have the lyrics memorized. Yet his death brought to light the decades of musical innovation in pop music (while the “industry” pumps out dozens of too-similar sounds and singers).
Thanks again for noticing the post and bringing home my own lesson to me again. Glad it connected with you, too.
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