Ponderings on simplicity

December 21, 2013

Tired.
Good.
Sun.

There are gigs to come for the next Mondays except for new year’s eve, that has never been my gig(!) there are paintings to make, probably as many as I can bear. There are winter months to come but already, the weather has been gentle these last few days. I have a feeling the winter is not going to be that difficult, at least not difficult from a North American standpoint.

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(photo by Meron)

I live. Live slowly. Live without having an intense pursuit. I was thinking this morning that my productive life started for me with a dream to ride in the equestrian discipline of three day eventing at the Olympics… then it was a dream to be a rock star, have this big music career… then it was about making many thousands of dollars so I could do the Scientology stuff (Yeah I did that) … then I tried to become a star cyclist… There has never been much of any kind of slow living in my past. There was even a 10 year stint where I took zero vacation. Sleeping in in the morning was my only revenge.

The sculpture, that was for just for me. That was the one thing I didn’t let myself mess up with competitive insecurity.

The motorcycle trip, that too was obsessive, but it was OK. It meant progress. I sat on this bike, there was no goal, no assigned purpose, no final target to reach. I rode because I wanted to.

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(photo by Bartin)

Now? Well, I am taking it completely differently, I do feel guilty for it at times, recovery takes a long time… I only feel good when I am working. I love working, creating…

I was talking to a friend and mentioned something about being out of the system. He said we’re never out of the system… yeah, right. We can be slightly under the radar but never really out. And I thought of all the borders, all the laws, the passports, the ties that make us this or that, something or other. I thought of the rules that say you can live 3 months here, 6 months there. I thought of the time I was at the Canadian border and realized that I was losing my rights as a citizen by not having an address, to the authorities, I was de facto, a suspicious particle in the flow of life. Things immediately were more difficult. I had to prove innocence.

What is going on in the world? Last night we were talking about the dimming down of the citizenry all over the world, the quality of the education everywhere is diminishing. Here in Turkey a friend told me that they just passed a law that would make it legal to only send kids to school until the 4th grade… In Canada and the USA people at university level cannot spell. Not a big deal you say? it’s a huge deal! it means they do not understand the words they use. … It looks as if there is a common agreement universally to dumb down the people. Uneducated people are easier to control, to funnel down into prescribed ways. They can be manipulated more easily via fear and propaganda.

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(photo by Maryam)

And this is where the ‘God’ Television comes in, sitting on its precious altar in every home, the center of attention. Suggesting, promulgating, propagandizing, teasing, hypnotizing the watcher into behaviors, into emotional states, into states of desire that shape the civilization, pulling the attention, the minds into meaningless puzzles and swirls of emotional waves away from what actually is. Argue this with anyone hooked on watching TV and they will tell you that they are in control, that they are aware of the manipulation and that they are able to circumvent it. Yet, what is obvious is how the “culture” shifts and changes with the shifts and changes taking place inside the ideologies proposed by the shows on the screens. The language, the expressions, the way we talk, dress, walk, love, hate, all a reflection of what goes on in TV land.

I know, I was there. I remember the night when I realized the massive hold that the TV had over me. I was watching ER. Last episode of the year, big drama. I am sitting there completely absorbed, I feel everything as if it was me…. I am the girl on the screen, the show ended leaving this big question mark in the air: What is going to happen!?!?? and that is when I saw it. I saw how real this was to me and it shocked me. I was vicariously living every speck of emotion, every event that was taking place on the screen, crying, laughing, getting angry… all that, sitting in the basement all the while letting this beautiful life drift by unattended. I was absent, gone into a world that did not even exist.

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That night, I got up, unplugged the TV that sat on a wheeled stand and rolled it in the other room of the basement. I put the screen against the brick wall and never touched it again. My life started to change. I started to do creative things, writing music, playing guitar and doing all the stuff I really wished to do.

I have been “off” the TV for years now. The other thing that followed was to wean myself off of the buying habit. Believe me, it is a habit, a way of life for us North Americans and I would dare to say, for most Westerners. When I traveled on the bike, I was forced to look at this behavior. I had the longings to buy but I could not buy anything because there actually was nowhere to put anything I would acquire. The saddlebags already full with the necessities and I didn’t have a home to ship things to if I bought something. This gradually brought on the awareness of this constant desire, this illogical impulse to just walk in a store and buy something, anything… a magazine, candy, anything…

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Now, I buy so very little, I live with very little. and it feels good. I also gave up the “private” life. I share a room, the bathroom, the kitchen, and for all of this, my life feels richer. I don’t feel “alone” anymore. And this to me is another thing our modern civilization has done: it has isolated millions of us into private loneliness. And here again, the TV is the friend, the balm that brings into the living rooms all over the world,company, oblivion, preprocessed lives to live, adventures to feel, outrage, joy, emotions…

Now here I sit pondering the hold my laptop has over me. How would it be if I only looked at it once of week or so? Or at least only once a day? What would I discover? What would I find?

I also wondered how my life would change if I stopped writing this blog? I’ve been writing this since May 2010. I started this as a way to keep anyone who needed to know, informed about my whereabouts and my wellness. but soon it developed into a sort of entertainment thing. It had to be interesting… my stats were going up, there were more and more readers… and the deformation from being an entertainer took over. I had to make this interesting.

I’m starting to wonder if a better energy flow might be to be interested as opposed to interesting. It’s a completely different mind set. That is one thing about having a music career… it is a constant contest to be popular and interesting, everything you do needs to surpass the last thing you did. You gotta have that up swinging graph, have a shtick, a thang, show some leg (!)… as if a corporate board of directors was about to evaluate your performance; is this a good investment?

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To be invisible, to be unimportant. Not to have to be the performer performing a perma-smile pasted on your pretty face. To just be. A friend challenged me to say what I actually think, express what I actually feel. That made me realize how much of the things I do are “other motivated”. I always try to please. What would it be like to not be worried about my performance? about the graph? To just be? To just really truly be honest. It seems there is a world to discover in there…

Where is that line? Do birds worry about what we think of their singing? What is it like to not worry? What is it like to just live a simple life? To think independently? And so, I am back to where I started; to live slowly. There is so much beauty around, so much to fill my heart. There is much that can be quietly contributed to. Simply.

I’m still exploring. It’s quite fascinating. In the end, again, all that matters is the intentions in your heart. The oneness with each other. The realization that nothing is that important except for the love. I’m loving life, I’m loving my brothers and sisters. What an amazing world to look at, to learn from, to appreciate.

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2 Responses to “Ponderings on simplicity”

  1. David Walker Says:

    Hi dearest Danielle, I will be tinking of you this Christmas. In that this is really a celebration of the return of light, physically the day length is about 2 minutes longer but metaphorically as well. It is about the renewal of hope in the face of many of the not so nice things going down locally and globally. I have hope that we can begin th treat the eartn and existance as the sacred and become aware. This is much of what Christmas represents for me. Your sharing, regardless of why, is a gift to us. If you speak about what is at your ‘core’ truly, it must have resonance in others in an objective, broader than the subjective, sense and we can all share with and learn from you.

  2. Danielle Liard Says:

    Had to laugh when you talked about the TV and its effects on people. I haven’t owned one of those things in over 30 years, and I don’t miss it. Ann Byrne once commented to me that that was probably why I was so sane. Don’t know if I am saner than others, but I definitely agree that it’s called a boob-tube for a reason. 😉

    You my lovely friend are in fact a mystic. You seek inner truth, unloading excess baggage as you go, whether that baggage is material or otherwise. Your creativity is your gift to the world, whether in music or tangible art work or in words. Mystical poet, and we love you for it.

    Your computer is a communication tool, and you give us beauty through it.

    Love to you

    Danielle


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