We’re deluged with doom. It seems that everywhere we look or listen, there’s some source of bad news or terrible horrors blaring out at us. The media does a good line in feeding us on relentless fear. It gets our attention. It sells advertising space. If you let yourself, it is very easy to become utterly overwhelmed with despair at the sheer rottenness that is daily delivered to your eyes and ears.
Have you noticed what that diet of doom, the junk food of the mind, does to your creativity? It cripples it, doesn’t it? When you’re down about it all, feeling helpless and bristling at the inhumanity and injustice of it all, it might not exactly motivate you to begin creating, am I right?
An antidote is obvious. Just turn it all off. Live a life of blissful ignorance. Don’t let the horror encroach on your creative time. Think positively, unfailingly and you are sure to be able to crank out your music, your art, your writings, your poetry and your paintings, aren’t you?
Well…yes and no.
The problem for me is that ignoring the doom doesn’t make it go away. The more I don’t do anything about the cause of the doom, the worse it gets. If nobody engages with the doom, in an attempt to eradicate it, then we all walk around like deluded little automatons, never daring to believe the unvarnished, disgusting truth, but at least we’re making lots of art.
Meanwhile, the bad things keep happening. Bad things that are ultimately going to affect everybody we know and love. The bad things won’t stop. We might be blissfully ignorant, temporarily, but while we permit the bad things to go on, we tacitly offer our support and sanctuary to them, by default.
What’s the point of that?
Ignoring the doom and the fear just to enable you to create seems like a waste of power, to me. Nothing is going to change for anybody unless somebody comes up with a creative solution, an innovative alternative or a fresh approach to the problem, whatever the problem happens to be. Creativity is always the path to resolution.
You’re a somebody. Why shouldn’t it be you?
I think that avoiding doom and media-amplified fear, just to create, leaves me feeling uneasy – as if something is very wrong, but we dare not speak about it. It’s like one of those terrible secrets that you’re not supposed to discuss with anybody. Denying the doom is just another burden that troubles the mind, irritates your conscience, weighs down the soul and eventually grinds your creativity to a halt all over again anyway.
It takes courage to face the doom and to create as a response to it. If you can embrace the fear and use your creative powers to make art that enlightens others, or encourages them, or edifies humanity, you’re taking concrete steps toward reducing the global stock of doom, fear and bad things. You’re eroding the mountain of horrors, slowly wearing it down. Through your creativity, you can begin to change the things that need changing. You can have an impact, or maybe cause a subtle shift, but your creative output counters the doom with hope. It dissolves despair like a stain wash remover. It banishes fear like a naughty child.
Don’t you find that there is a liberating, empowering sense of taking control of the situation and influencing the outcomes for the better, when you take on the doom and produce a creative alternative to the way things are? There’s an undeniable honesty to that art, too. Something pure.
Instead of avoiding the doom, in order to create, if you instead create in order to avoid the build up of excess, pointless, ultimately meaningless doom, you make doom less of a problem for everyone. You can use your wonderful, unique and potent creativity for the avoidance of doom – not to side step it, but to take it head on and defeat it.
I find the prospect invigorating and inspiring. I hope you do too.