Love is perhaps the highest defined vibration in the universe; but what is love? Love is the state of pure positive focus. When we are currently focusing positively towards something, we are in a state of love. Everything in existence is an extension or expression of source energy. Art is essentially an expression. Because all things in existence are expressions, all things in existence are art. As an extension of source, you are imbued with the ability to create. Every being in existence is therefore at their core an artist.
We are all artists. An artist celebrates beauty. An artist recognizes beauty even in things that would be unanimously considered “ugly”. An artist can recognize what is poignant about even the most mundane things. Beauty is defined as a characteristic that provides the perceptual experience of pleasure. And we can train ourselves to see beauty in everything. We can view this earth through the eyes of our inner artist. This one of the most essential spiritual practices of all. When we practice seeing the world through the eyes of the inner artist, the entire world transforms itself into a work of art. The movements of a crowd of people, which once seemed erratic, begin to seem like a dance. The person, who once seemed obnoxious, becomes a bell of mindfulness that brings us back to the present moment. You can use this process in your every day life to enhance your enjoyment. You can use it to amplify your feelings of joy and gratitude, you can use it to find appreciation for mundane things and you can especially use it to eradicate resistance from your being. For example, when you feel resistance arise within you because you are observing something that is unwanted and you feel negative emotion towards something, try to look at that thing through the eyes of the inner artist. Act as if you are on a treasure hunt for the beauty within that thing you have resistance towards. This practice works towards everything including events, people, feelings, objects, circumstances, sounds etc. It is perhaps the very best tool to use when you are visually observing something you have resistance to. To demonstrate how this process works, I’ll give you a personal example. One day, a man walked by me and flicked his used cigarette butt on the sidewalk below my feet. At first I was revolted. To me, it was proof that the world was disgustingly forsaken. But having committed myself to the practice of non-resistance, I reminded myself that the feeling of resistance within me was a call to ripen my perception. And so, I made myself watch the cigarette butt for a full hour. It took fifteen minutes to get past my resistance, but once those fifteen minutes past by, a greater truth was revealed to me. That greater truth was beauty. It was like a whole other world had been revealed to me, a whole other possibility of perception. I watched this object, which is unanimously considered ugly, but ugliness is no longer what I saw. I watched it floating in the breeze, back and forth across the sidewalk. I watched it as it was crushed again and again, under the heels of many a tennis shoe; leaving little sprays of burnt tobacco on the cold cement. I realized that disguised beneath the generally assumed ugliness of this piece of garbage, was the lesson of allowing. The cigarette butt was completely absent of resistance. It did not resist the dominance of the wind. It did not resist the crush of the shoe. It had given its life in service. The purpose of it’s existence was to offer someone a moment of relief. And suddenly, I treasured the cigarette butt that once I had been so repulsed by.
Before you make the judgment that a practice like this last one, glorifies litter, remind yourself that this practice is not about condoning something or not; it is not about right or wrong. It is simply a practice that facilitates the state of non-resistance within you.
People make an inaccurate assumption and that is: we must be horrified or repulsed to take action or to do what is “right”. We attach ourselves very strongly to our resistance because we are convinced that resistance will keep us on the path of righteousness. This is inaccurate. For example, we do not have to be horrified into a state of resistance in order to take action to prevent child abuse. We can instead take action to enable children to live safe, free, healthy lives from a place of inspiration. We do not have to hate cigarette butts to pick litter up off of the floor. We can love a clutter free world to pick litter up off of the floor. And this is a very important distinction to make. All having resistance to something does, is lend energy directly to that thing that is unwanted. All resistance does, is rot you from within.
Resistance is an affliction. It is an affliction that gives way to a deep sense of inner peace and happiness when we begin to live our lives through the eyes of the inner artist. But do not wait to feel resistance to practice this way of seeing the world. Use it to enhance the experience you’re already having by trying to see even more beauty in everything, including things you’re already enjoying and mundane things like the light streaming through a window or the way someone smiles or a mundane object. For example, a pen is a mundane object. We take pens for granted because they are a part of our every day life. But take a closer look at a pen and you see the craftsmanship of the ballpoint, the beautiful richness of the ink, the geometry of the shaft, the hours donated to its creation by the designer, the way that it lets us communicate symbols of meaning with one another and the way it helps us to preserve fleeting ideas.
To see the world with the kind of clarity that belongs to the inner artist, and to see the world with the eyes of truth, is to look at the world through the eyes of our true self. Our true self does not recognize ugliness. It recognizes only beauty, beauty even in the rotting and deformed and afflicted. We are in pain when we recognize something as ugly, because in that moment, we have deviated so very far from our true selves. The moments that we feel the most resistant to something we are seeing, are in fact the very moments that offer an opportunity to see clearer. They are a calling to recognize a deeper truth, the truth of beauty, the truth of beauty in every single thing.