TED.com has been providing interesting, inspirational, challenging, entertaining, wondrous talks delivered via the internet in bursts of roughly 18 minutes for a number of years. I was not aware of TED until my teenage son turned me onto it a year or two ago. Even after that I was not a TED regular. But that all changed with my entry into the universe of blogging prompting a desire for information and inspiration.
I dug up this 2009 clip of a TED talk by Elizabeth Gilbert, the author of the bestselling book Eat, Pray, Love. The video clip clocks in at about 19 and a half minutes, but it is well worth the time and is still a vital piece. Gilbert eloquently shares her thoughts on creativity and inspiration. I’ve included it below. Watch the whole thing. If you’ve seen it already, it’s worth watching again. You have my permission. Let me know if you need a note. I’ll be happy to provide one.
I love how Gilbert relates poet Ruth Stone’s own description of what it is like when inspiration hits. I hope those of you who create have had the experience of being visited by “genius.” You might know it as Devine inspiration, entering the zone, encountering a muse, creative enlightenment. Call it what you like but regardless of the label, it comes from some place else. It comes in it’s own good time. It comes when it is ready, not when you are. It comes without warning, and never when you need it, and hopefully we are in the right place when it arrives.
As Gilbert mentions we need to “do our job.” If you hold up your end of the bargain, when genius is visited upon you, you will be in a better position to take advantage of it. And if it comes embrace it. Shout, “Olé!” I, along with Elizabeth Gilbert urge you to create, because art is important. Some one once said and I paraphrase: I can imagine a world without art, but I don’t think I want to live there. Whether you are the benefactor of genius or not be assured that what comes from you or to you is worthwhile, or as Elizabeth Gilbert says, “Olé nonetheless.”
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