Why be an Artist?

 

Here’s why.

This is an address to Boston Conservatory students – I don’t have the speaker’s name but the message is a beautiful one.

“If we were a medical school, and you were here as a med student practicing appendectomies, you’d take your work very seriously because you would imagine that some night at two AM someone is going to waltz into your emergency room and you’re going to have to save their life.

Well, my friends, someday at 8 PM someone is going to walk into your concert hall and bring you a mind that is confused, a heart that is overwhelmed, a soul that is weary… You’re here to become a sort of therapist for the human soul, a spiritual version of a chiropractor, physical therapist, someone who works with our insides to see if they get things to line up, to see if we can come into harmony with ourselves and be healthy and happy and well.

Frankly, ladies and gentlemen, I expect you not only to master music; I expect you to save the planet. If there is a future wave of wellness on this planet, of harmony, of peace, of an end to war, of mutual understanding, of equality, of fairness, I don’t expect it will come from a government, a military force or a corporation… If there is a future of peace for humankind, if there is to be an understanding of how these invisible, internal things should fit together, I expect it will come from the artists, because that’s what we do.”

And here, the brilliant Brenda Ueland from her book If You Want to Write:

Writing, the creative effort, the use of the imagination, should come first – at least, for some part of every day of your life. It is a wonderful blessing if you use it. You will become happier, more enlightened, alive, impassioned, light-hearted and generous to everybody else. Even your health will improve. Colds will disappear and all the other ailments of discouragement and boredom.”

Possibly worth putting up on the wall, or at the very least the internal one that can sometimes stand between us and our creativity.

Daintry Jensen is the author of THE HIDDEN FOREST, a middle grade fantasy adventure novel set on Nantucket Island, recently published through Green Writers Press.  Available at your favorite book seller and online at Amazon.com and Barnesandnoble.com.  www.daintryjensen.com

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