I want to write about creative energy. Energy is a very difficult thing to write about these days. It's a word that's being used all over the place, by physicists, by environmentalists, by fitness advisers, by nutritionists, by healers, by those who are interested in spirituality.
My use of the word energy is, at first glance, strictly physical, in the sense of energy moving through the body in biological and physiological sense. But this sense of plain, physical energy in the body turns out to be much more complicated and subtle than I used to believe. Can I run for 20 minutes? Looks like a fitness question. Do I regularly go outside and run for twenty minutes? Seems like a time management or discipline question. Do I feel like going outside and running? Oh, is this a mental health question? Or is it an 'I need a holiday' question? How come I can feel incredibly tired and then when the right person phones up and says, 'you wanna meet up?', I suddenly feel excited and exhilarated? How come I can go out feeling the same on two different days, to see two different sets of friends, and come back from one meeting utterly knackered and the other beaming with delight and sit up half the night writing poetry?
And what about driven energy, that energy of the mind and will that can push me through just about anything on this earth, if I've set my mind to it - the energy that can completely shut out my body screaming for rest and fun, and push myself onwards towards some deadline that I've convinced myself I absolutely 'have to' meet?
Recently I've begun to recognise another kind of energy, which I think has been powering all these other energies throughout my life, I just didn't understand it. It's the energy that made me always want to join in to any song I knew, whether on the radio, the tele, at a concert, on the bus; the energy that made me do annoying things with my hand to the rhythm of Indian music; the energy that made me want to leap up from my seat at a concert and seguey into that bit of open space that seemed just made for me to dance in; the energy that made me want to buy up everything in an art shop and threatened to kill me when I saw an exquisite drawing.....
As I've been reviewing my entire life, personality, habits, and foibles, these past few years, I've tried on various forms of explanation for my extremes and the intensity of my desires. Of all possible explanations, the stream that they all seem to keep flowing back to is the idea of pulsing, creative force, which my upbringing and culture have done their best to redirect and suppress. I can frame up the twisted forms this force has been forced to take, the road blocks it has tried to work around, in any number of ways, but in the end it all seems to come back to this.
There's nothing godly, mystical or spiritual about this energy. It's the force of life, the physics and biology of myself as a dynamic system, emanating from and completely enmeshed in the moving tides of a vast universe, which is itself a huge pulsating movement of physical energy. This energy is, by definition, creative. Creativity is what life is, the way that life is able to be life, in the sense that it's something constantly moving and adapting and changing; technically speaking, novelty and change evolve continually form all biological systems in the form of emergence.
As a human, it's my nature to respond to the ebbs and flows of energy that pass through me; for my muscles to start to move if a drum resonates nearby, for sound to emerge from my throat in harmony with frequencies that enter me via my eardrums, for my hand to reach out a pick up a burnt stick and scratch it onto a rock.
The suppression of the flow of these energies has nearly killed me.
How did we become so disconnected?