Step 1: Seeing inspiration in a new way
We often think of inspiration as something that “comes” and “goes” whenever it pleases, and the best we can do is “show up” and wait…
But what if could think of it as a unified field, which doesn’t “come” and “go”, but is always right here, ever-present? What if it is already ever-present, and it is we, ourselves, who close ourselves to it? And all we have to do is open up to it?
This shift in the way we think about inspiration gets us out of the victim mode, waiting for the all-powerful Muses to help us out, and creates new questions for contemplation:
How might I be closing myself to the inspiration? And most importantly, how can I open up to it?
Step 2: Listening from the field
I call it listening, but it is really experiencing, sensing — with all senses. What is essential here is a special quality of attention, shifting your “I” beyond what you usually recognise as your own thoughts and experiences, as your own “self” — seeing yourself as a inalienable part of this ever-present field, dissolving the boundary what’s “in here” and what’s “out there”.
This inner gesture is almost opposite to the gesture of “going deep inside yourself” (so common in artistic and spiritual practices). It shakes you up from the familiar and takes you into the unknown — into the field where insights and inspiration are abundant, just waiting for you to notice them (and not to shy away from the new and the unknown).
How do you experience the field you are moving into? What is it? What do you hear from there? What do you see?
Here is my answer. What about you?
Step 3: Letting go
The ever-present inspiration process is not always easy, and this step may be the hardest one…
But the thing is, this is also an essential, unavoidable part of any growth: letting go.
What if you opened up to inspiration, and now you feel its incoming wave, and you are beginning to see what it is that is struggling to emerge through you… what happens next?
Basically, one of two things: either you ride to this wave, or you let it pass (and, most likely, close yourself up to the inspiration again). And when we do let it pass, it is usually (if not always) because there is something we are not willing to let go…
It may be something you don’t even like at all, like the voice of fear in your head — and yet, there is such a nice comfort of familiarity in it… Or it may be something you love, something you are attached to.
Whatever it is, there is always something scary about this step from the known into the unknown. Here is how it feels to me.