Sunday • April 23, 2023 12:34 AM • 36:07
The Writer – The Musician
Hey, everybody. Welcome to Stream of Coffeeness.
I’m The Writer.
And I’m The Musician. Today on our show, we sat and talked about the topic like what should we talk about? And in that question, there lies the question itself. Do you need inspiration to create art?
It’s such a delicious question. Because I know there’s so many answers.
It’s not just yes or no?
No. (laughter) The answer to that one is a no.
I think it’s No, I think you are inspired by life itself in some gratitude every day that you wake up living this life, that in itself is the inspiration to make something happen, artistically. And whether it’s a good or bad day, your bad days, create good art, your good days, create good art, like the most beautiful thing that ever happened to you. The most awful thing that ever happened to you. All can be put into your art.
Yeah, I find that even a lot of ideas will come at really random moments. Like when I’m washing dishes, or I’m in the shower, and I’m just living my life. And the inspiration just happens. And then I also find myself feeling like I have a creature inside of me that I need to feed inspiration to. And it’s always hungry and ravenous, and I need to feed it. And I actually feel a sense of starving when I don’t go and search for inspiration from somewhere.
When you say search for inspiration, somewhere as if it doesn’t inherently already exist within you.
Oh, it’s there. It’s there. But then it’s let’s see.
So do you need inspiration to create better art? Is your best art made from really good inspiration? Or really? Moving inspiration? Or, you know, does the bigger inspiration create the bigger art? Or again? Or is it just inside you?
Or does that put layers over perhaps inspiration that’s already there? Like, does it build on top of what’s already there? Which means we don’t need anything at all. So like say, okay, for example, say we were to go out into the woods at the Pacific Crest Trail, and be in nature for days and days and days and days. And you’re just wait, but then you get inspiration from nature. So…
Well, not just inspiration from nature.
From your own self.
But blocking the inspiration from society. Like to disconnect to go out in nature, they say, you know, I have no Wi Fi connection, but that’s like, who cares? Your connection is, you know, to nature and to something bigger than, you know, our little like our society has a box that you get into that has money and houses and, and society and whatever. And the moment you separate from all of that and go out into the into the forest and are just a human being out in nature.
Then you’re able to more easily like listen to your own inner inspiration that’s already there.
I agree. But that’s still theoretically No, I mean, I agree. But that’s theoretically Yes, that’s the theory. But it’s tested and almost tried and true. Like Walden going out to nature. Supreme inspiration, but then you find the same inspiration with someone like Basquiat or Andy Warhol in society taking culture and throwing it back in cultures, in society’s face. Like,
And which is the more valid inspiration? Neither. If you try to judge…
It’s true. It’s like the, you know, polar opposite states that exist all through our lives and like in ourselves, there’s so many different qualities. And then how that pendulum does swing from just inspiration from the world. And then inspiration from deep inside yourself, like if you’re meditating and you gain it that way, you know in that quiet.
The inspiration that comes from quiet or the inspiration that comes from chaos and…
Noise and movement, stimulation.
But then Henry Miller said, “chaos is the score upon which reality is written.” So we’ve written our society, created this society on total chaos. We create the buildings and the roads and the and the whole order of society on top of a chaotic nature where if we didn’t have all this to protect us, we’d be, you know, mauled by bears, and everything would come and get us the wild, poisonous bugs and snakes and things we’d just be at the mercy of nature. But we’ve protected ourselves away from all that. Who knows?
It is such a massive question to me, it feels like I want to dissect it, like it’s so big. And I just want to…
Well, you mentioned the duality.
And so like, in the most basic duality, just light and dark. I think of yin and yang. And when you say the pendulum, the symbol for Yin and Yang has a little spot of light inside the dark and a little spot of dark inside the light. And both of the objects imply a motion of a circle that, that that eats itself, the light eats the darkness, and the darkness eats the light. And neither is neither is…
That’s the creature I’m talking about inside myself.
(Laughter) Neither is bigger, you know, yeah, they’re both the same size, they both have the same qualities, they both have a little bit of each. And inside of it’s a perfect device. It’s a perfect, just like chess, to Wu Tang was inspired by chess. And they play chess, and there’s a, they’ll talk about it in interviews about chess. And it’s such a perfect metaphor, the game itself is a is a metaphor, or something that mirrors the quality of life by having a light and a dark, equal, there’s, you know, the number of spaces on the board 64 spaces on the on the board, like even evenly balanced squares of light and dark, where if you cut it in half, then your half has the same amount of light and dark, that mine has your the light pieces on the dark pieces? Well, we have the same number of pieces on the same number of squares. And as you move around the board, you could you would never see the same patterns like unique patterns exist in chess all the time. Because every player is different. Every every game is different. It sort of mirrors life in that way, where given the same situation, somebody with their experiences would attack it differently. And so then that comes back to something I think we talked about in a previous podcast that if somebody had the same experiences you had, would they react the same? And usually the answer is yes. Like when you have to have empathy or compassion for somebody else. You have to realize that given their circumstances, you would probably make the same decisions, given their entire life leading up to that moment, you would probably make the same decision they made. And then you want to understand them more than judge them or cast them aside and say I would never do that. The things you hate the most and people are things that you hate the most in yourself. If you even want to use the hate word, maybe are repelled or not attracted to. Cheers.
Cheers, by the way to love. (Laughter) Because I was like thinking what’s the last thing we just said?
You were gonna say “Cheers to hate.”
I don’t want to cheers to hate. I wanna cheers to love.
Cheers to all the haters. I choose to love the trolls.
And you know with inspiration I was thinking about how sometimes I’m not sure if you feel this way, even Eric like about your own art and creating how sometimes there’s a feeling of…Gosh, I don’t even know the words for it. It’s just like a heavy feeling of just every now and then you know about just not knowing you know where it’s gonna go. If it’s going to become something like…
Lack of hope or something?
Sometimes really? for you? So, for me a lot of times to inspiration reminds me that you do it to fill myself and with what I lava to do. And then in that moment, that’s where all the energy is. And that’s where the there’s so much there so much treasure and so much that, then it doesn’t matter that those future moments you know of what it becomes or anything how it touches another person, then it just doesn’t matter. So like inspiration just has a way of reminding me that I just need to be in the moment with my art.
Right? Like, you go for unique situations like mystery, you go find… Put yourself in a situation where you don’t know what’s going to happen to surprise yourself, or to amaze yourself or you try and it’s like his trick, you play on yourself. But then you get to know yourself so well. That if you go through the same motions every day, and you do the same things every day, you’re not surprised, you’re not amazed. And taking that leap of faith in artistic creation, not knowing where an artistic endeavor is gonna go is that sort of trick you’re playing on yourself to get to know yourself better to put yourself in a situation where you don’t know how you’ll react, and you don’t know how it’s gonna turn out. And sometimes…
You’ll be surprised. I love being surprised by my art.
And that’s why you have to do more.
And by other people’s art.
Just by art, like it really does. It has this effect of surprise and amazement, like you’re talking about, I really resonate with that.
Mystery. And you have to be in the moment because if you’re not you miss it. When they find that time moves faster for people that have rigid structure in their life that they do the same thing every day. They oh my god, though, you’re just went by like a, you know, five years went by and I didn’t even know what happened all the time. Your mind plays a trick. And it actually bridges gaps fast, because it knows what’s going to happen in your mind is like, Oh, I know where this is going. And it just races to that moment in time and speeds up time for you. Whereas in something where you don’t know the outcome, time could be slower and slower and slow down. Because you actually have to absorb the information, your brain has to go Wait, I don’t know what’s going to happen. So it takes in the information instead of just going Oh, I know where this is going.
Yeah, like, rather than being automatic, it’s more intuitive and more in your senses, like taking in everything. That’s why I feel like like rather than living in autopilot like that, what you’re talking about, then we can go to inspiration and inspiration actually has or anything that inspires us. It has this way of helping us to remember ourselves.
You get connected to yourself, by opening up to that, if you watch a movie over and over again, at some point they’ve studied, you’re not actually watching the movie, like you’re not taking in the sights with your eyes and the sound with your ears and taking the feelings in. You’re replaying the movie, as you saw it previously, however many times you’ve seen it previously. And your mind starts actually filling in the blanks, and you’re not watching it, you’re watching a replay of it through your mind. And that’s where you’re supposed to turn off your thoughts and not listen to your thoughts because some of them are so untrue. Because your mind is just going, Hey, here’s a thought that you think when you’re in this situation all the time and you go okay, that’s who I am. And that’s my thoughts. It’s not it’s just your mind going, assuming, yeah, this is what you’re going to say. And that’s where you might trick your mind and say something different that you wouldn’t normally said or make questions instead of filling in the answers. Not making assumptions being attached and having expectations and… Ha ha ha. And people that’s why people are perfect mirrors. You find good friends and you find people even just a stranger in life you talk to and have this weird little connection for a minute. They’re perfect reflections of you showing back to yourself, like the parts you love about yourself.
I love that.
Like the people you resonate with the most are the best mirrors for you, showing you more about yourself.
Go find them. Go find your perfect mirror.
Go find them and then share the stories with us. We would love to hear.
So find your inspiration and make good art. As Neil Gaiman, Neil Gaiman said, “Make good art.”
Make good art.
And there’s a great song by Professor Elemental and Dr. Syntax and His Amazing Friends.
Make good art. Yeah.
So back to the original question. Do you need inspiration to create art, if the answer is no. Again, if the it’s an it’s sort of an inception or you know, fractal like, the question has the answers within the question itself. By simply making art every day will you find inspiration in the process of making art or in the outcome of your making art? Is their inspiration already embedded within the process itself. So you didn’t need inspiration to begin with, but if you do find inspiration, you might create better art and the more you do art, you’ll find inspiration in the art itself.
And maybe like that, one, there’s that one picture where there’s everything we know, there’s everything we don’t know, there’s everything that we don’t know that we don’t know.
Like, then we have to leave open for inspiration that maybe it’s happening and we don’t know it.
The symbol Om, and the attainment of your bindi, your third eye. In, in, in a culture, says you have to be at peace with the things you have control over at peace with the things you don’t have control over and at peace with the things you don’t even know about. And that’s the largest part of the equation. It’s a very small piece of the equation, things you have control over. Another probably larger piece of the equation, the things you don’t have any control over. And the biggest part of it all, you have no idea like you have no idea you’re gonna walk outside and a bird is gonna poop on you.
You didn’t see that one coming.
No, I would have moved the other direction. If I knew that was coming.
You said it was good luck.
Oh yeah. I like me some good luck.
You would have stepped right into it.
Maybe I could put my cat there instead. (Laughter)
Is that? So there you go. When danger is near, take your loved ones and place them in the way. (Laughter)
No. I’m just kidding. Everyone she’s on my lap right now. And like, I don’t know why I thought of her doing that. But like, (Laughter) I would never do it Speckoi. I promise. Really, I wanted to share the luck. (Laughter)
(Laughter) And luck equals bird poop falling from the sky. The mystery of life.
So mysterious. Which reminds me of a quote by Einstein, where he says the most beautiful experience we can have is the mysterious. It is the fundamental emotion that stands at the cradle of true art and true science.
What a gorgeous quote.
It’s funny then art or science, science being a calculated measure of creating the same results. Science is the goal is to produce the same results over and over again to find truth. Whereas maybe art is not an exact science not producing the same results but still finding truth.
I am so in love with what you just said. Yeah. And then one just feels more actually no both still feel very jaggedy at time.
Well, some people try and put a science to their art and and maybe like songwriters, we’re gonna make a hit song. There’s that show and they have these people that say Oh, well hit songs and you need to do this. You need to do that you need to do this and then you’ll have a hit. Or the 17 people that…
Calculated. So calculated.
The 17 people that write Beyonce’s music.
Calculate. This is going to be a hit and it is it’s a million dollar multimillion dollar hit. Big, big big deal. But they are following certain rules and going with certain almost scientific stabs at art.
But like the guy who made acid what was his name? His last name Hubbard. I think his first name Adam.
Oh, was it Adam? Oh, thanks.
And I don’t think he created acid as much as as as discovered. I have to look it up. I think it’s a discovery. Because the story goes that the ergot of the rye, which is rye bread the rye seed itself would go bad. And in that fungus and mold, there was this the science of acid Lysergic acid that would create hallucinations and he I think he found a way to extract it, he discovered a way to put it into a form.
And wasn’t it by?
He didn’t like…
Hey, I just made acid no one’s ever had it before.
It was by a more intuitive process.
I’d have to look it up.
Like an art where you’re not necessarily I mean a plan and it just happens.
Could be. I’d I’d have to look that one up the story. But I do know at least that it comes from rye. That’s that’s the original was…
I didn’t know that. Rye bread.
…was people eating rye bread and the rye went bad and the fungus.
Oh my gosh. Holy buns.
Now they also say that some people say that language was created by magic mushrooms like mushrooms in nature. Monkeys going around, found the mushrooms ate the mushrooms had these hallucinations and visions, and created language as such a an odd thing to say that they put meaning into sounds to be able to communicate with each other. It’s such a high concept for the animal world that they…
Do you think that they’re tripping sound is like, Ooaaaahhhhhh?
Yeah, that’s exactly last time I tripped with a monkey that is the exact noise that the monkey made. No, they always say that we’re just, we’re just these monkeys on a space rock. You know, communicating our hallucinations to each other in this weird voyage that we’re taking.
As we drink coffee, Cheers.
Cheers. We have to thank those adventurous monkeys. Yeah, on their first psychedelic journeys, to advance it supposedly advanced the brain like created new areas of the brain that then became human. The humans we know today that was I believe the evolutionary shift was psychedelics. That’s why some of these visionary artists have been you know, whacked out on psychedelics because they’ve been actually expanding the bounds of art letting go of the body, the mind letting go of everything and going out on this exploration to find new realms of art to come back and bring it and show it to us these people are psychonauts they’re out finding the bounds of the mind and the bounds of perception to go to the edges go over the edges and then and then bring it back and explain it to us. Hunter Thompson said “The edge. There’s no real way to describe the edge” because the only people who know about the edge are the people that have gone over it you don’t find the actual edge until you go completely over it because otherwise there could be another ledge there could be an edge that you didn’t see that you you say Oh I found the edge and you stopped is that really the edge when you go over it you go Yeah, that was the edge and you fall and go Aaaa or go like the monkey does, Ooaahhhhhh!
Or you go flying to…
We don’t know.
…some other place.
You have to go over the edge to find out.
The imagination or…
We have people like Hunter Thompson to thank for going over the edge and then explaining. I love that quote of his. Yeah. Explaining it to us hey, here’s what it is. Here’s what’s oh here’s what’s past the fence.
And that’s something that like you can’t even describe you know what’s over the edge like you just have to experience it.
True. True. When I would go to festivals and find a spot to camp instead of going in the center of everything I would go out to the edge go out to some remote remotest part the edge where there’s few people.
And there’s only cats.
I would find the fence I would find the edge I would find the bounds the limits and go to that where you can go no no more and put set my tent up.
I love when you pitch a tent.
And I’d be so happy during the festival when when I needed to sort of get away from it all and like download and relax and sort of settle and and you know you get overstimulated which is rare for me, but people do get overstimulated. And when you get to that point, you need some space that’s just you and yourself and I would go to the my tent where the nobody is and chill out and relax and be at peace and then go and then…
Go run back into the, to the fracas.
Wildness. The wildness, the fun, all that stimulation, all the inspiration there. Festivals have so much inspiration.
The art there to the people you meet to the randomness of different experiences.
If you look up the 10 principles of Burning Man, there’s so much in there that is it’s like a set of rules that can help you create a wonderful community space for this magical exploration of the mysterious the inspired the art the it creates a good frame for that. The radical expression, radical gifting, radical self reliance, radical inclusion. There’s these these terms for the principles of Burning Man which help describe how to get to a place where we can all coexist with all our differences. But in a unified way that also doesn’t hold you back from expressing yourself. Hold you back from being a community. Hold you back from being yourself. Yeah, accepting others as themselves.
I love it there.
There’s a freedom in these in these rules is a weird way to say we’ve created these rules. But then with those rules, you now have freedom.
I love festivals I want to go. You’re talking about all that. And I just want to go to one like so much. There’s definitely that remembering I was talking about that happens there at the festivals. And I remember it happening so majorly like years and years ago, just how safe I felt to just be myself and how welcome that was by other people. And that knowing that deep knowing that we’re all just exploring and supporting each other and just being present to one another as we’re doing that. And that is so beautiful.
Unless you dress as a clown.
It’s your traumatic experience.
It wasn’t, it was no it wasn’t trauma, it was trauma for…
I think you talked about it in the last pod…
I did. But it’s not a trauma for me. It was a trauma for them. But I think it’s just so interesting that there’s radical inclusion and radical acceptance and radical self expression. But clowns are sort of like off the map.
It’s like this. It’s definitely not unconditional.
People would walk away like I can’t take it. Oh my god clown like, and there’s two kinds of people in the world. People who hate clowns, and clowns.
Well, then I want to take this moment to cheers to clowns.
And all the other people that are not clowns.
Yeah. We embrace you all.
Be you clown or not clown.
Do yo thing.
Oh, what else to talk about inspiration? Ooooo.
Or can you even? I mean, we’re talking about all this. And getting nowhere near defining it seems like an infinite.
What is the actual definition of inspiration? Like in the dictionary?
Oh, I don’t know about that.
But I think there is I think there’s a fractal quality and maybe, you know, to a lot of things, but to inspiration. I think there’s a fractal fractal quality again to where inspiration breeds more inspiration and a lack of inspiration breeds inspiration. And I think it’s just an inherent quality, I think imagination, inspiration. These things exist within you. And while if you exercise them more, you might get more out of it. I think it’s just inherent. I think life in itself is inspiring, like life wants you and your inspiration and needs it. Like our ultimate goal is finding out more about ourselves. And to do that we need inspiration and imagination to go out into the mysterious and be surprised and amazed and find our individual unique reactions. And then putting that together into a larger experience, then when all of our reactions are common, we start to learn more about ourselves and each other. And that mirror reflection that we’re talking about. Finding good mirrors and finding good reflections, the more we find out about ourselves through the mysterious all that does fractally is create more mystery and more inspiration and more imagination.
You don’t ever resolve it.
In our connections.
You go to the next room, and there’s more. And then when you’ve like, almost like an escape room, or we found the way out and you go to the next and oh, no, it’s another room where you have to find the key. And when you find the key, go through the door, you look back and you were there the whole time. It’s it’s it is a infinite infinite loop of finding your inspiration, imagination and uncovering mysteries will only bring up more questions, unanswered questions, and you’ll find…
Which gives such a hunger. I feel like…
An Infinite Journey, which isn’t It’s finite. But then there’s an infinity within each of us, there’s an infinite depth to every human experience.
Almost as if we’re all like, hungry and inspired to fulfill our potential. Which, inside of the word potential is the word potent.
And I love that there is such a potency to everything you’re saying and that like drive that there’s a inner force that moves.
…even people that don’t get inspired, that don’t seek mysteries, people that are sort of turned off to all that and do nothing. Doing absolutely nothing. Is in itself also an answer. Like Rush said in the in the song Freewill. “If you choose not to decide, you still have made a choice” You have freedom of of will, even if you don’t exert it, that in itself is your freedom.
But are they having as much fun?
That’s a judgment?
As other people?
That’s a judgment.
That’s true. No, I’m just questioning.
How wonderful ignorance is bliss, how wonderful it would be to, to not have the frustration of an artist to try to find…
Inspiration to try to find meaning.
To try to find how beautiful would it be to not… to be at peace, like the stillness of of, of the mind the meditation to find that still, empty space? Would that not be as valid as somebody that finds… ya know, the rest of the world that’s not at peace that’s not quiet that’s not to keep going in that chaos? Is it then not a beauty of itself to find a nothing, a stillness, a calm, a peace, a complete just being.
Kind of like the other day when you and I were on the couch and I said something like, like we can do something else if you’re bored just sitting here and we were just listening to music together. And really feeling the music and listening to the words and feeling the musicality of in the moment to is like really windy outside. And the trees or we could hear everything blowing there were wind chimes and it was just so beautiful. Just to like I was feeling really inspired. Just sitting there and not doing anything, just listening to music and being with you. Like any other person if they were looking at us, they might be like, Oh, there you know, kind of like what I said which wasn’t a judgement, but it was just asking, like, are they not having as much fun?
Like somebody that was dancing or?
Yeah, or like going wild like with energy like very extroverted energy that is very obvious. In everything we know about having fun, you know, but like someone could be having brilliant fun that’s just sitting there. Not really doing much on the outside, but on the inside is where all the energy is, you know?
Like, at concerts, I would not dance. And sometimes I couldn’t even clap at the end of the song. And people all instinctively like, bang their hands together and clap and applause and yay. But for me, it was like, I’m just feeling it. So I would do nothing, but they’d say, are you enjoying though it’d be like, more than you can imagine. But there’s so much going on the inside but the outside not so much.
I love it. Aww. And with that said, we’re gonna say our goodbyes for the day. And I’m gonna clap really, really loud. Eric’s not going to clap at all. (Claps)
I’m clapping on the inside.
We love you.