Yoga says something fascinating about suffering.
That the purpose of suffering, is to lead us from suffering.

Suffering shows up to help us see where we have gotten off of our path. The path of yoga which is the path of UNION with our highest self.

Suffering is the indicator that we have taken a detour. NOT the indicator that we are finally and truly an artist.

The struggling, suffering, starving artist is bullshit.
It is nothing more than an excuse to remain lazy, unmotivated and addicted. It is not the stuff by which great art is made.
It is the obstacle that keeps you out of your true artistic genius and mastery.

In BIG MAGIC Liz mentions a great many artists that were living under this illusion. That suffering is the path to great creating.

Liz attributes Rufus Wainwright as saying, “he was terrified to settle down into a happy relationship because without the emotional drama that came from all those dysfunctional love affairs, he was afraid of losing access to that dark lake of pain he felt was so critical to his music.”

Painter Francis Bacon said, “The feelings of desperation and unhappiness are more useful to an artist than feeling contentment because desperation and unhappiness stretch your whole sensibility.”

Liz says, “the modern language of creativity is that it is steeped in pain, resolution and dysfunction. Numberless artists toil away in total emotional and physical solitude — disassociated not only from other humans, but also from the source of creativity itself.”

We have been told that the best art is born of chaos and anguish. We have been lied to.

Pain can be a great thing once transformed.

Many people describe moments in their life of their deepest pride as being when they over came great suffering and pain.
What isn’t inspirational or even interesting is sitting in it, refusing to let it transform and grow you so that you might be able to use that anguish and torment to make something.

There is a higher calling.
One we haven’t been taught.
It is called Love. Pleasure. Delight. Joy. Anandaha — Bliss. Liberation.

One can move mountains for love that pain can only sit and cry over.
Our true strength is when our channel and vessel is healthy and clear.
The Universal flow of inspiration will not seek the most talented or more deserving person to bring its magic forth to — it will bring its inspiration to the place where it can manifest easiest and most effectively.

If the Universe wishes to have a beautiful flower grow it will seek the most fertile soil. It is nothing more than a long held illusion that suffering helps.

Liz says so eloquently, “our creativity grows like sidewalk weeds out of the cracks of our pathologies — not from the pathologies themselves.”

So why live, believe or perpetuate this crazy narrative? Because otherwise we will feel GUILTY.

We feel SO GRATEFUL and ONE OF A KIND to get to “pursue our dream”
We did not grow up in families of people living every day to the fullest and creating their hearts desires.
We grew up on “hard work”, “sacrifice”, “putting food on the table”.
We grew up in a tribe that valued suffering as noble.
We then chose a path of love, pleasure and transcendence.
In order to not betray the tribe we find a way to make our joy look “hard.”
Our pleasure look “temporary and hard fought.”
And our love look “earned”.

There is no such thing as a “suffering contest” as Liz calls it.

If you had a family member with Cancer it would not help them for you to get it also. It does not help them heal.

It does nothing but cause more pain.
Suffering begets suffering.

Until you see it as the route to your liberation, and begin to choose differently.

You do not have to explain, justify or earn being creative. It does not have to be hard or filled with strife.

Creative living is allowing a Divine gift to flow to and through you.
The more open, the more alive, the more clear your instrument, the more beautiful the music.

It is time to decide that you, and only you can set yourself free.
You are a POWERFUL CREATOR and you can create whatever story you want. What if it could be easy? What if all this suffering were optional?
What if you could just fall in love?


Jen Rudolph