Sunday, April 04, 2010

Finding a Good Place

I've been struggling with motivation and inspiration more than the usual amount. Trying to surround myself with beautiful things. I work best when I feel that what I am doing is important -- that it makes a difference and that it's necessary.

I share this like it's a revelation. I'm aware it's not a revelation.

When I lose the sense of urgency or when I'm not clear on the objective, motivation becomes murky. I do enough to get by and ride the wave of old successes. I learned that strategy in school... strike quick, show you know the answer and they'll leave you alone for the rest of the class. The result is a high grade and a notebook full of doodles.

School taught me to speak critically. I didn't learn to think critically until I left school.

I used to daydream about some sort of utopia where people could come together and learn and create and explore and dream. The closest reality I've been able to find are continuing education programs at community colleges. No grades, just people who want to be there.

It's simple to absorb all the day-to-day crap -- the news, our nature, the nastiness -- so it seeps into your soul. Sometimes I picture my soul growing blacker, like a snapshot of smoke damaged lungs. And if I had to identify the core of my latest motivational questioning, I'd have to say it's this: how do I scrub my soul clean?

Especially if I'm not even sure I have one. But that's not what we're wondering about here today.

To explain the title: utopia translates to a "good place."

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