Creativity is Fickle

Creativity is a fickle thing. No means are available to us to harness her power. Whether she works or not depends entirely on her; and we are so lucky to have even a moment’s glimpse into her powers of production. She works by and only by her time.

If we are ready to fall asleep, laying head on pillow with eyes shut, and creativity decides to visit our conscious minds, then we are immediately hurled into a frenzy. Awaken we become, and speedily moving we are; to pen and paper, to paintbrush and canvas, or to keyboard and document we must scramble, for we know not when she shall return. Uncertain of her return, we seek to document all her beauty and wonder. 

So fickle creativity is. Much like a leaf being torn from a branch after powerful winds, descending in no predictable manner, creativity can at times land upon our consciousness with graceful, slow, and smooth descent, or a chaotic, punctuated, and fast descent. A gust of wind, a gust of creativity, can bring chaos or elegance, but we know not which is brought until time comes. 

Creativity can ravage our mental health, by making us pursue her through the toughest of terrains; the chaos of a muddy, thick forest where all sorts of monsters lurk in shadows. Or, creativity can astonish our sense of aesthetics by showing us perfection itself, like a single fluffy cloud surrounded by a deep blue sky hovering directly above as we lie in grass greener than green. 

And as fearful or welcoming as we are of creativity, in hopes to receive blessing or face chaos, we fail to know where or when she shall land. Like a stone rolling down hill, creativity is fickle in its landings; sometimes creativity rolls quickly and close to the surface of the hill, and at other times creativity jumps and skips across patches of the hill. Although creativity shall find herself at the bottom of the hill, nonetheless, and although creativity will always land in our conscious minds, she knows neither when or where about she shall land, here or there.

Yet furthermore, what is granted to us by creativity when she finally lands is of an equal degree of fickleness. The content provided bears the mark of a random number generator.

When a fiction writer is struck by creativity, a gift of non-fiction is granted; when a non-fiction writer is struck by creativity, a gift of fiction is granted. Each then must make due with what has been given. When a painter seeks an image to paint, creativity shows them a wonderfully written story; when a writer seeks a story to write, creativity shows them an oddly shaped plumb. The content creativity offers is like judging a book by its cover; we know what we want, but what is given is never what is expected: so infrequently do books have apt covers.

So fickle, then, creativity is when she provides us with gifts of production. We know not when she strikes, nor where in specific she shall land; neither do we know in what manner she shall grant us her gifts of production, nor how orderly or chaotically they shall come. How blessed we are.

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Ideasinhat is a business development analyst and longtime reader of academic literature. He writes books and essays on science and philosophy, and posts them to this website. The essays, as with the books, cover topics from psychology, philosophy, and cognitive science to economics, politics, and law.

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