Monday, October 17, 2011

VOR’s Turn: The Creativity Bug Lingers.

Belly dance

Image via Wikipedia

If you have read some of my recent posts, you will know that creativity is very much on my mind right now.

I guess it is prompted by a long held view that the notion that money is commensurate with success – as measured by one’s peers and society in general – represents both a corruption of values and defies commonsense.

The former is self explanatory. The latter is illustrated by the fact that numerous people do things for reasons other than financial reward. Creative people are one such group – and here I include the spectrum from writers to belly dancers. Since belly dancers are prettier, the illustration features one of them.

Arguably, most of us hope for fame and fortune, but, in truth, most of us are realistic enough to know perfectly well that the majority of us will achieve neither. Or that success is fleeting.

But we love what we do – when we get a chance to do it - and we gain enormous satisfaction from it.

‘Satisfaction’ is probably selling it short. If you knew how much pleasure I get from writing – if I was a braver writer, I would use the word ‘happiness’ - I’d probably have pickets outside my door wanting a share.

Creative people apart, many of us find numerous other activities incredibly fulfilling. The list is endless. Just as well because this world of ours has a wide spectrum of needs.

And yet somehow we have elevated the accumulation of riches to a special status virtually regardless of how such wealth is accumulated. The concept that we all all have a duty to society, and that the phrase ‘ the common good’ has real meaning, seems to have been stripped out of our culture.

I don’t grudge anyone becoming wealthy, or at least comfortable; but I think the consequences of our three decades long experiment at pampering the rich at the expense of society as a whole speaks for itself. Under almost every heading one might care to name – it has proven to be both corrupting and disastrous.

The truly worrying thing is when people, who are fundamentally quite content with their occupations, bow – and I use the word metaphorically - before wealth. And feel dissatisfied.

Achievement is a fine thing; but the possession of wealth, in itself, deserves no respect. And the manner of its accumulation is relevant.

Since I have raised the subject, I’m now tempted to tell a tale or two about belly-dancers, but … they can wait for another time.



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