Quotes on Art and Creativity

Quotes on Art and Creativity

Objective art is just the opposite. The man has nothing to throw, he is utterly empty, absolutely clean. Out of this silence, out of this emptiness, arises love, compassion, and out of this silence a possibility for creativity. This silence, this love, this compassion, these are the qualities of meditation.

An intelligent man, a man who has a little meditative consciousness, can make his life a beautiful piece of art, can make it so full of love and full of music and full of poetry and full of dance that there are no limitations for it. Life is not hard. It is man’s stupidity that makes it hard.

The highest art one can learn is the art of loving, and that the ultimate creativity and the highest art are born out of a knack — meditation.

Be creative in that sense and your creativity will become an offering to God. God has given you so many gifts, Garima; something HAS to be done just in deep thankfulness. But remember: with no motive, not as a means but as an end unto itself. Art for art’s sake, and creation for creation’s sake, and love for love’s sake, and prayer for prayer’s sake.

Just as the day cannot exist without the night, just as life cannot exist without death, creativity cannot exist without silence. And vice versa is also true: silence cannot exist without creativity.

A really spiritual person will live life as an art, will create a deep harmony between the body and the consciousness. And this is the greatest art there is. His life will be a joy to see. And he will be fragrant, for the sheer reason that there is no split in his being. The very unity makes him organic; the wound of division is healed.

Whether you create, or you observe an objective piece of creativity, meditation should be the key. Without it, mind can only spread on the canvas its nightmares. Most of the paintings of the great painters like Paul Gaugin or Picasso are almost like vomit. They could not contain their agony and suffering — it was so much they threw it on the canvas to get relief. The real objective art is not a relief; it is not a sickness that you want to get rid of. It is a blissfulness that you want to share. And by sharing, it grows; you have more of it, the more it is shared.

Creativity comes easy to a man who is loose and natural. Whatsoever he does becomes a creative phenomenon. Wherever he touches, it becomes a piece of art; whatsoever he says becomes a poetry. His very movement is aesthetic. If you can see a buddha walking, even his walking is creativity. Even through his walking he is creating a rhythm, even through his walking he is creating a milieu, an atmosphere around him. If a buddha raises his hand he changes the climate immediately around him. Not that he is doing these things, they are simply happening. He is not the doer. Calm, settled inside; tranquil, collected, together inside, filled with infinite energy overpouring, overflowing in all directions, his every moment is a moment of creativity, of cosmic creativity.

The really creative person is not interested in dominating anybody. He is so utterly rejoicing in life — he wants to create, he wants to participate with God. Creativity is prayer. And whenever you create something, in those moments you are with God, you walk with God, you live in God. The more creative you are the more divine you are. To me, creativity is religion. Art is just the entrance to the temple of religion.

Modern art is childish — not childlike, remember, childish; not innocent but stupid, insane, pathological. We have to get rid of this trend. We have to create a new kind of art, a new kind of creativity. We have to bring to the world again what Gurdjieff calls objective art.

The art of life begins with meditation. And by meditation I mean silence of the mind, silence of the heart, reaching to the very center of your being and finding the treasure that is your reality. Once you have known it, you can radiate love, you can radiate life, you can radiate creativity. Your words will become poetic, your gestures will have grace; even your silence will have a song to it. Even if you are sitting unmoving, you will be in a dance. Each breath coming in, going out, will be a joy, each heartbeat so precious because it is the heart beat of the universe itself — you are part of it.

Unless a man learns how to create, he never becomes a part of existence, which is constantly creative. By being creative one becomes divine; creativity is the only prayer.

Everybody is born with the capacity to enjoy, but not with the art. People think just because they are alive and they breathe and they exist, they know how to enjoy. That is sheer stupidity. Enjoyment is a great art, it is a great discipline. It is as subtle a discipline as music or poetry or painting. It is the greatest creativity.

It needs great art, learning to play with one’s own life, to play on one’s own life. Meditation is the art to create music from your heart. Meditation is simply the method to transform noise into harmony, the method to shift your consciousness from the head to the heart. The head is noisy, it is all noise — a tale told by an idiot, full of fury and noise, signifying nothing.

When a man’s life becomes poetry, becomes a song, becomes a work of art, a creativity, he has become a sannyasin. Whether he knows it or not, it does not matter. The word sannyas does not matter; what matters is the content.

Help people to meditate, because there is nothing more creative than meditation. Each art and each creativity can be tremendously enhanced by meditation. If somebody is a painter and he starts meditating, his painting will have a sudden jump, it will become tremendously profound — because whatsoever you paint reflects your mind. If the mind goes deeper, your painting will go deeper. You paint your mind. What else can you paint? You paint yourself.

Look at the paintings of Picasso. He is a great painter, but just a subjective artist. Looking at his paintings, you will start feeling sick, dizzy, something going berserk in your mind. You cannot go on looking at Picasso’s painting long enough. You would like to get away, because the painting has not come from a silent being. It has come from a chaos. It is a by product of a nightmare. But ninety-nine percent art belongs to that category.

People are just stupid: in anything, they follow the fashion. This is not creativity. This is neurosis, or a neurotic kind of creativity. There is another kind of creativity, what Gurdjieff used to call ‘the objective art’. When the inner polarity is no longer polar, when your inner divisions have disappeared and you have become one, then creativity is released. Then you do something that will be of immense help to humanity, because it will be coming out of your wholeness and out of your health. It will be a song of wholeness. It will be like the Song of Solomon — of immense beauty, of immense splendor.

Art can be divided into two parts. Ninety-nine percent of art is subjective art. Only one percent is objective art. The ninety-nine percent subjective art has no relationship with meditation. Only one percent objective art is based on meditation. The subjective art means you are pouring down your subjectivity on the canvas, your dreams, your imaginations, your fantasies, your dreams. It is a projection of your psychology in the same way it will be in poetry, in music, in all dimensions of creativity. You are not concerned with the person who is going to see your painting. You are not concerned what will happen to him when he sees your painting; that is not your concern at all. Your art is simply a kind of vomiting. It will help you, just the way vomiting helps. It takes the nausea off, it makes you cleaner, makes you feel healthier. But you have not considered what is going to happen to the person who is going to see your vomit. He will become nauseous. He may start feeling sick.

Remember from this very moment: always choose that which is good for you and good for others. Choose creativity. Become a blessing to existence, because that is the only way that we can persuade God to become a blessing to us. That’s the only true prayer: becoming a blessing to everyone — to people, to animals, to trees, to life in all its forms. If one remains consciously alert, slowly slowly the art is learned; slowly slowly it becomes just natural.

The modern painter is insane. He is painting out of his insanity. If you look at a Zen painting, a silence oozes out of it, suddenly something beautiful surrounds you. You are transported to another consciousness. The painting carries something of the touch of the Master. The painting has been done in deep meditation; the painting has been done by one who has arrived. Gurdjieff used to call such art “objective art”. When somebody who has attained to consciousness does something, that something becomes objective art. Looking at that thing, you will have some glimpse of the Master. The Master may have been dead for three thousand years, that doesn’t matter. The painting, the statue, the carving will represent him, and through it you can again become connected to him. If you know how to meditate with a painting, it will be easier.

All people who are creative are close to religion. Religion is the greatest creativity because it is an effort to give birth to yourself, to become a father and mother to yourself, to be born again, to be reborn through meditation, through awareness. Poetry is good, painting is good — but when you give birth to your own consciousness, there is no comparison. Then you have given birth to the ultimate poetry, the ultimate music, the ultimate dance. This is the dimension of creativity. On the rung of creativity, religion is the last. It is the greatest art, the ultimate art — that’s why I call it ‘the ultimate alchemy’.