"When asked what makes a good dancer, the master replied:
First, to be a good dancer, one must know the music as well as the dance.
And what else?
To be a better dancer, one must understand the stories and be able to interpret the characters being portrayed.
Is there more?
The best dancer is the one who has all those things I have told you about and is a farmer."
"There are very few human beings who receive the truth, complete and staggering by instant illumination. Most of them acquire it fragment by fragment on a small scale by successive developments, cellularly, like a laborious mosaic."
"When Bala performed, she danced into being the universal other, child, lover or god with the same truth and immediacy as when, on the other side of the curtain, she chopped chili's, cradled her grandson or wrapped her sari. She put her life experience into some deep matrix within herself where centuries of tradition, years of discipline and a great inner light acted as forced to distill and make beautiful the most simple act. With Bala, earth and spirit were one. When she was ready it all came out as an offering to her god, through dance."
"The creative process is the same, whether we dance, make soup, shoe horses or whatever it is we choose to do in this world.
Everything I do adds up and goes into the act of painting.
I have an idea for making something or I have a commission to do something or I have a deadline...and I always have a kind of natural resistance to getting down to it. Somehow I feel that this kind of natural resistance is quite healthy--because all the information, sources, and ideas need cooking before they can be served. So I go on living and I go on doing what might seem to be very uncreative things like shopping or cooking or washing the dishes or answering the phone or writing letters and sometimes the data comes out and asserts itself into my consciousness and I live with it for a while.
Artists, poets whatever you want to call those people whose job is "making" take in the commonplace and are forever recognizing it as worthwhile.
I think I am always collecting in a way, walking down a street with my eyes open, looking through a magazine, viewing a movie, visiting a museum or grocery store. Some of the things I collect are tangible and mount into piles of many layers and when the time comes to use these saved images I dig like an archaeologist and sometimes find what I want and sometimes don't."
When I sat down this morning at the computer I closed my eyes for a moment to just center myself.
A little voice in my head said, Corita and I reached over to the book shelf and pulled off my beloved Learning By Heart by Corita Kent and Jan Steward.
It seems a good way to start off the new year. Words of wisdom and support from a great teacher who showed her students and with Jan's help the outside world how to see the everyday world with new vision.
These words and thoughts from Corita, Jan and others need to be carried with me throughout the day. I need to be reminded, YOU need to be reminded that "we can all talk, we can all write and if the blocks are removed, we can all draw and paint and make things. Drawing, painting and making things are natural human activities but in many they remain in the seed state, as potentials or wishes."
Find your Corita or find her words and let's create.