The urge for sharing

Ysus

Jedi
FOTCM Member
Hi everyone – I feel the need to post this lengthy introduction in order to explain myself before I start posting here. This text was also – apart from some small changes – the introduction I used when applying to become a member of the Fellowship almost a year ago. Asking to be accepted as a member of the Fellowship did not come easy to me. I understand it as a binding promise for commitment to “Service to Other”.

A binding promise for commitment… That’s what I wrote - and yet I am slow as the slowest snail when it comes to actually sharing more.

Sure, I did not see where I would fit within the Fellowship and felt and still feel rather intimidated by the sharpness of your super-minds, and sure, I did not want to just tag along and limply and hyper-carefully comment here or there but I was also shying away from drawing uncalled-for attention to myself and that proves difficult if one’s (at least perceived) share-strength lies mainly in the realms of visual (self-) exploration/expression...

I’ve been reading books more or less throughout my life and there are so so so many more waiting but I have also been desperate and determined to find and use “my own fuel”. Gurdjieff talks about the personal fuel a “Working person” needs to find for his/her car to move (in “The Last Hour of Life”).

I have been trying to grapple with the Work - or at least the first part (so far): “knowing myself” (better) - by trying to translate as much as I can into language that I can personally relate to, where I feel personally involved and at home and therefore able to use as a “communication tool” for sharing with /reaching “Other”.

A combination of Cartoon and “Märly” (or “Märli”, the Swiss German word for “fairytale”) is what I have found or what found me. With the help of (reality courting) “Märly”– fragments/elements I try to add (at least the idea) of a “sacrosanct seed” to the world of cartoons (where typically nothing is sacred).

In other words: how far can I go with ridiculing (I often ridicule myself), namely using cartooning, without totally severing my (potential for a) divine connection? The baby’s got to stay in the bathwater!

This is how I understand “Märly”: A potential for soul growth, a touch of poetic magic, a longing for truth and fairness, of noble thought and acts and braveness, of keeping one’s word, of persevering even in the most dire and testing of circumstances. It’s about doors that point to our inner riches and places of hope but the protagonist must show him/herself willing to put in the effort. E.g. by agreeing to a deal that binds her/him to remain silent for a very long time no matter what happens. However, noble intentions (always/never/fairest/bravest/most beautiful/true love etc.) can easily turn overly zealous, unrelenting, pompous and “bumptious” if an adept doesn’t know how to temper him/herself.

“The Cartoon", on the other hand, is home to a “stripped” and distorted world. From the mild, somewhat endearing and distortion to its extreme: where downright disrespect and cynicism reign, where nothing is sacred and life just a cheap and nasty joke and where humans are reduced to be no more than faulty and pathetic animated bodies.

But cartooning offers also: a means for illustrating the crux of a problem, cutting the frills and pushing all kinds of boundaries.

So this is where my idea of “Märly Cartooning” comes in: exactly NOT as an expression of resignation or downright disrespect and certainly NOT as evidence of having given up noble intentions and ideals. On the contrary: in order to help me keep them. I try to make them “bearable”, livable and “humane”.

I am a great advocate for humour in its many varied expressions. “Mastered” humour (not mere escapism or disassociation) can be a mighty tool for keeping one’s sanity and mental hygiene and of course: connecting people.

I have devoted most of my energies to exploring these “realms” over the past ca. 5 years. Meaning: notionally and tentatively getting to “what is”/getting to the roots of problems via (often merely sketchy, fuzzy) fragments (rather than whole and linear stories). I inflated, deflated, compared “incomparables”, honed in on details, and blew them out of all proportion… The results are a great many photos of my scribbly drawings/doodles, small objects made from paper, clay and fabric (e.g. my main cartoon: a mix between a donkey and a swan) and an arsenal of (verbal) “gistings” in my many, many, many notebooks. I also filmed myself at times (often simply rants, sometimes also used for – erratic –illustrating and documenting).

I ‘ve been rather afraid of too openly sharing my productions (though I did share quite a few things and a lot of internal explorations on the (however questionable) facebook, which I sometimes call my “sewer” i.e. a place for clarifying).

They are personal, and at times downright asinine and embarrassing and I often use myself as “working material”/a projection for all sorts of unflattering findings - e.g. exploiting the sickening “selfie”-cult. I felt the need to explore all sorts of “narcissisms” and take them to their extreme in order to understand myself/others/the zeitgeist better. A bit like homoeopathic therapy: treating narcissism with narcissism (trusting that the process won’t in fact amplify rather than dismantle at least some of it).

I am still finding it extremely challenging not to isolate myself and just lock myself up in an “ivory tower” of my own subjectivity.

However, my strong wish is - and has been for a long time - to align myself with STO and by myself I cannot be of service.

I explain all this because it has been such an important process for me. I could not not elaborate on it. It is nothing short of a personal creative pilgrimage. A painful and at the same time wonderful period of grace but despite the seriousness of my processes, the pictures are often somewhat light and flippant. I mean I don’t use the word “cartooning” for nothing…

If I had to sum up – in one word - the way I feel about this group’s unwavering commitment to consciousness and the wealth that is being shared so freely, it would be: gobsmacked.

Now I don’t quite know where to start since there are so many different processes I have creatively gone through. I will just start somewhere and trust that I will find my share-bearings along the way. Thank you for your patience.

Gratefully, Ysus


(Attachment: this boat symbolises my personal od(d)yssey: a long journey from almost complete hiding to some form of sharing)
 

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Ysus

Jedi
FOTCM Member
"Who cares about another princess' smile? Let's care about Yours"
 

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Solie123

Jedi Council Member
Thanks for sharing Ysus... I really like your Ark.

As long as you're giving the best of yourself, that should be enough
 

Ysus

Jedi
FOTCM Member
Solie said:
Thanks for sharing Ysus... I really like your Ark.

As long as you're giving the best of yourself, that should be enough

Thank you, Solie. We will see.
 

Ysus

Jedi
FOTCM Member
"Love" gets toilet trained
(discerning limiting from real emotions)
 

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Ysus

Jedi
FOTCM Member
"Sew-er" with flickering of hope
 

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Ysus

Jedi
FOTCM Member
Solie said:
Woah Ysus! I really like "Sew-er" with flickering of hope"... How'd you make that?

Thank you, Solie. What you see is what was: I made a hole into the paper, put the wick of a candle though it an lit it (I only let it burn for as long as it took me to take the photo). The sewn bits are sewn with golden thread right into the paper.
 

Ysus

Jedi
FOTCM Member
I continue with an excerpt I posted on my facebook in December 2012 (not that it matters). As I said in my first post here: facebook was/is my sew-er/a place for clarifying:

Artists have an accepted outlet for their big feelings and “grieves”, that’s probably what I have always wanted. Reflected and "put into form" grief. Not direct ramblings and "pukings" that usually embarrass, shock, make uncomfortable and helpless and where the one grieving easily retards into a small child and gets only "there there" dummy comfort. The pride and strength of someone who has survived all sorts of battles and does not necessarily want to cry or perhaps wants to cry but be left alone to sort themselves out with dignity - is easily undermined. Sublimation (yes, I am smitten by "sublimation" these days) offers a respectful distance but is often closer and more intimate than most personal contacts could ever be. Strange that. I suppose it has something to do with the "human experience" in general. We can relate to other people's feelings and needs and dramas quite easily but we probably have to understand where and when it is called for to be more than a respectful spectator. More often than not what helps most is not “meddley”, self-adulating action but keeping a careful, possibly alert and caring, distance. A distance that says:" I have no doubt that you are strong enough to sort yourself out." Perhaps a bit of pointing here, a little input there and sure, sometimes much more, but helpers, particularly imposing ones, have to be watched. I say this as someone who has a history of falling back into the child mode. But I have worked on it a lot over the past few years. There are leftovers and I mean: I am so good at it and it has offered me a lot of protection but I let it turn me into a weak-freak. Well. Let's be realistic, I will probably semi stay in it in my "outside" life. But my work, my sublimations, must be mainly acts of courage and strength :-)
 

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bjorn

The Living Force
FOTCM Member
Hi Ysus

[quote author= Ysus]I have been trying to grapple with the Work - or at least the first part (so far): “knowing myself” (better) - by trying to translate as much as I can into language that I can personally relate to, where I feel personally involved and at home and therefore able to use as a “communication tool” for sharing with /reaching “Other”.[/quote]

This is what Gurdjieff had to say about art. (mechanical vs objective art)

http://www.gurdjieff.org/challenger2.htm

- Maybe you find it helpful : )
 

Ysus

Jedi
FOTCM Member
bjorn said:
This is what Gurdjieff had to say about art. (mechanical vs objective art)

http://www.gurdjieff.org/challenger2.htm

- Maybe you find it helpful : )

Thank you for the link, bjorn. I had come across Gudjieff's thoughts on art before and can’t even begin to fathom just how much consciousness is required to create objective art.

I use visual representation mainly to illustrate the many different processes ("know thyself") I'm going (or have gone) through. They are, for the best part, mere "waste products" (at least in terms of Real Work) but I thought someone somewhere might well get something out of them for their own Work processes. I find "solid", linear texts often too cumbersome and boxy as communication tools - also when it comes to capturing the many different emotional nuances.

Attached:

Easter 2011: “Dieses Ei fühlt sich immer betupft” (literally: this egg always feels spotted.
Meaning: always in a huff.)

(example from series: “Insulted, Precious, Blocked”)
 

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Ysus

Jedi
FOTCM Member
More from series: "Insulted, Precious, Blocked"
 

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bjorn

The Living Force
FOTCM Member
Hi Ysus

[quote author= Ysus]Thank you for the link, bjorn. I had come across Gudjieff's thoughts on art before and can’t even begin to fathom just how much consciousness is required to create objective art.[/quote]

Empathy is the key, know that it’s not about you but about the urgency of the message, objective art acts as a medium to create awareness.

The ''picture of the Day'' on sott.net is a good example of objective art.


[quote author= Ysus]also when it comes to capturing the many different emotional nuances.[/quote]

If it helps processing difficult emotions/trauma's I think it’s therapeutic and helpful. But if you get attached to your work it will stall you in your progress of practicing The Work.

Emotions are there to be figured out and understood. Emotions are not there so we could feed of it. That would be mechanical.


- For what its worth :)
 

Ysus

Jedi
FOTCM Member
Hi bjorn

Now I must say this: the sott picture oft the day is definitely not an example of objective art. These pictures are usually political cartoons and I understand them to bring home to us the insanity and hypocrisy of the world arena and therefore give us more of a chance see the world we live in more objectively if we so choose but the „art“ itself (and cartoons are not even normally seen as art) is a far cry from objectivity and I am pretty sure no one expects them to be, not even the cartoonists themselves.

Here two excerpts from the link http://www.gurdjieff.org/challenger2.htm
you posted:

On the other hand, “objective art” is authentic art in that it results from deliberate, pre-meditated efforts on the part of a conscious artist. In the act of creation, the true artist avoids or eliminates any input which is subjective or arbitrary, and the impression of such art on those who experience it is always definite. To the degree that objective art is the result of consciousness, it inherently possesses “soul.” As one example of soulful art, Gurdjieff cites the paintings of Leonardo da Vinci; as another he refers to the Taj Mahal. Both constitute objective works of art.

And further down:

In order for us to regard Gurdjieff’s aesthetics with a sympathetic stance, we need to consider his ideas about art within the context of his larger body of thought. In particular, two key points in his philosophy of art must be highlighted and linked to his larger world-view. One is that, despite the forcefulness with which Gurdjieff distinguishes conscious and unconscious art, he readily acknowledges that these antithetical categories exist largely on a theoretical level. The situation regarding individual works of art is more complex, in that tangible artworks almost inevitably embody both subjective and objective elements. Given this reality, each is relatively valuable artistically according to the level of understanding it represents.

Bear in mind, that I haven’t even seriously started to share my visuals. This has merely been an introduction to them, so you don’t know what I have put into form and where I am now (as an living person) in my process (a lot of it is an exploration of past, outlived phases). You’re responding to my somewhat contrived, careful and dense introdcution and I think you might be jumping to conclusion.

Also, I was not reaching out for help, I was merely explaining my intentions: that of sharing more meaningfully. I purposefully started this thread in the “Creative Acts”, not the Work or swamp section.

If people feel I am just littering the forum in order to feed on positive/negative responses, I will certainly stop. The thing is: how to show what I mean without showing anything?

Your perception that I am attached to my expressions is rather true, though, and it does bother me and it might well obstructing my Work-ability. I appreciate that you took the time and effort to respond to me. :)
 
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