I am glad to be coming to the end of it all. Phoebe Mae Kittenhead Alvis actually put a stop to it by ending it with The Cat's Answer which you will see after the last punch line...
Okay - enough fun and on to the serious business of ART :) and more of the John Cleese creativity lecture. HooRay!
Now the next factor, number four - is Confidence.When you are in your space/time oasis, getting into the Open Mode - nothing will stop you being creative so effectively as the fear of making a mistake.Now if you think about play, you'll see why. To play is to experiment - "What happens if I do this? What would happen if we did that? What if…?"The very essence of playfulness is an openness to anything that may happen. The feeling that whatever happens, it's ok. So you cannot be playful if you're frightened that moving in some direction will be "wrong" -- something you "shouldn't have done."Well, you're either free to play, or you're not.As Alan Watts puts it, you can't be spontaneous within reason.So you've got risk saying things that are silly and illogical and wrong, and the best way to get the confidence to do that is to know that while you're being creative, nothing is wrong. There's no such thing as a mistake, and any drivel may lead to the break-through.And now, the last factor. The fifth - Humor.Well, I happen to think the main evolutionary significance of humor is that it gets us from the closed mode to the open mode quicker than anything else.I think we all know that laughter brings relaxation, and that humor makes us playful, yet how many times have important discussions been held where really original and creative ideas were desperately needed to solve important problems?...but where humor was taboo because the subject being discussed was "so serious"?This attitude seems to me to stem from a very basic misunderstanding of the difference between 'serious' and 'solemn'.Now I suggest to you that a group of us could be sitting around after dinner, discussing matters that were extremely serious like the education of our children, or our marriages, or the meaning of life (and I'm not talking about the film), and we could be laughing, and that would not make what we were discussing one bit less serious.Solemnity, on the other hand… I don't know what it's for. I mean, what is the point of it?
The two most beautiful memorial services that I've ever attended both had a lot of humor, and it somehow freed us all, and made the services inspiring and cathartic.
And there you go. I - for one - am grateful that John Cleese created a world for us full of humor. Maybe we'll watch some Monty Python this weekend...that would be fun!But solemnity? It serves pomposity, and the self-important always know at some level of their consciousness that their egotism is going to be punctured by humor -- that's why they see it as a threat. And so dishonestly pretend that their deficiency makes their views more substantial, when it only makes them feel bigger.
On this Friday - I wish you some serious humor in your day and we'll have some more of the John Cleese talk tomorrow too. But no....
NO MORE dog light bulb jokes!