so we find purpose. we create purpose.
from a young age we are given roles to fill. without understanding who we are, we are given an objective. faced with expectations and immediacy – the desire to fit into the system often overrides the slower process of understanding ourselves. we are problem solvers. immediate objectives keep us driving forward. the system is massive and redundant, it does not require us to be happy or even content – only useful.
we become so accustomed to tumbling forward, flitting from one judgement to the next that many of us have never made the effort to create an internal structure, a self-referential value system that can at least push back on the environment that surrounds us.
space. and time.
these elements are so often stressors, but in claiming them as your own they become fuel for definition. removing immediacy gives us space to learn. understanding is currency of sorts. a force multiplier. taking the time to understand your objective, your material, and your tools. it is an accounting. identifying what elements you can change, and at what cost.
in defining why we can begin to work on how. raw material is simply potential, it is only after we have an objective that we can understand the balance sheet. assets and liabilities. artistry is the ability to see – to interpret the objective, to understand that a tool is simply a lever, an extension of will. it is that will, that understanding, that striving to be that is your most vital asset. we are all works in progress. snapshots of inheritance and influence. we are often so focused on moving forward that we don’t stop to ask if it is the direction that best suits us, or one that we want in the first place.
purpose. created, deliberate, purpose.
understanding and artistry.
these are things i value.
these are things i choose to refine.
to see the end result within material. to recognize potential and expose it. to nurture it with a deft hand…
a traditional bow is nothing more than a piece of wood that follows a few simple rules. making it is actually quite easy: to bastardize Michelangelo – just remove everything that isn’t the bow. to build a bow is to take a material and, with our action, give it purpose. the “rules” are ones of function, and the skilled hand is the one that can interpret those rules more creatively. it has access to more material because of understanding how to balance and exploit what initially appear as liabilities.
i am obsessed with lessons. with rewards. with identifying the traits our challenges are selecting for. the skillset required to be victorious. matching material with a realistic understanding of my capabilities. understanding appropriate tool selection. the stages of reduction. how to cope with the unexpected…
understand your material. understand your objective. understand what you can change and what you cannot. most of all, understand why.
working with my hands, working with wood or steel or stone will always remind me of these lessons. will force me to look at problems differently, to turn mistakes into centerpieces, to recognize how to make an asset out of a liability, to be flexible and open to new information.
applying these lessons day in and day out have changed me as much as they have changed the objects i have created. it has made me more comfortable being a work in progress, a being undergoing refinement.
and refinement is heavy work, for if i cannot see myself – how am i supposed to see others? if i cannot control my hand then why would i lift a tool that will multiply my effect exponentially?
i wish to have an effect.
i have limited energy.
to maximize my effect i must understand my material. i must seek out and master the tools that will best allow me to craft that material to a purpose.
to my purpose.