The War of Art
The idea of “Resistance” came from a book I read while on Christmas vacation a year ago, “The War of Art” by Steven Pressfield. As I was reading it, I knew my life was about to change. Some things resonate so truthfully that if you ignore them you must take full responsibility for your cowardice, accept your impending failure, and say to yourself, “You just ain’t got it kid”. Once the enemy had a name – Resistance, I had to admit that for my entire life up to that point I had always given in to it.
So what is Resistance? It takes so many forms that almost everything is resistance. It’s anything that stops us from doing what we know we should be doing with our lives, things that elevate us, the pursuit of our calling and purpose. It’s the artist that doesn’t paint, the writer that doesn’t write, … Read More »
“Pure hell forces action, but anything less can be endured with enough clever rationalization, distraction, and acts of self-sedation. If tomorrow morning by some stroke of magic every dazed and benighted soul woke up with the power to take the first step toward pursuing his or her dreams, every shrink in the directory would be out of business. Prisons would stand empty. The alcohol and tobacco industries would collapse, along with the junk food, cosmetic surgery, and infotainment businesses, not to mention pharmaceutical companies, hospitals, and the medical profession from top to bottom. Domestic abuse would become extinct, as would addiction, obesity, migraine headaches, road rage, and dandruff.” adapted from “The 4-hour Workweek” by Timothy Ferriss and “The War of Art” by Steven Pressfield
“Have you ever brought home a treadmill and let it gather dust in the attic? Ever quit a diet, a course of yoga, a meditation practice? Have you ever bailed out on a call to embark upon a spiritual practice, dedicate yourself to a humanitarian calling, commit your life to the service of others? Have you ever wanted to be a mother, a doctor, an advocate for the weak and helpless; to run for office, crusade for the planet, campaign for world peace, or to preserve the environment? Late at night have you experienced a vision of the person you might become, the work you could accomplish, the realized being you were meant to be? Are you a writer who doesn’t write, a painter who doesn’t paint, an entrepreneur who never starts a venture? Then you know what Resistance is.”
“Resistance, … Read More »
“We come into this world with a specific, personal destiny. We have a job to do, a calling to enact, a self to become. We are who we are from the cradle, and we’re stuck with it. Our job in this lifetime is not to shape ourselves into some ideal we imagine we ought to be, but to find out who we already are and become it.” – from the “The War of Art” by Steven Pressfield
Remember the movie Billy Jack starring Tom Laughlin? The film and its sequels have long since decamped to cable, but Tom Laughlin is still very much around. In addition to his movie work, he’s a lecturer and author and a Jungian-schooled psychologist whose specialty is working with people who have been diagnosed with cancer. Tom Laughlin teaches and leads workshops; here’s a paraphrase of something I heard him say:
The moment a person learns he’s got terminal cancer, a profound shift takes place in his psyche. At one stroke in the doctor’s office he becomes aware of what really matters to him. Things that sixty seconds earlier had seemed all-important suddenly appear meaningless, while people and concerns that he had till then dismissed at once take on supreme importance.
Maybe, he realizes, working this weekend on that big deal at the office … Read More »