Recovering The SelfA Journal of Hope and Healing

Arts & Literature

Rules For Life – The World Can Inspire You

by Ken La Salle

Welcome back to my continuing series of Rules For Life.

You know what I don’t understand? People who lack passion. I simply don’t understand it. Worse than simply lacking passion, I don’t understand people whose lives are so lacking in passion that they strike you as inert. Have you ever known someone like this? They can’t be bothered to be interested in what’s happening in the world. They aren’t interested in engaging with others. Their interests extend no further than the popular culture that is very often crammed down their throats by the media they tune out with.

They just don’t care.???????????????????????????????

I don’t get that.

Listen, my wife and I recently paid a visit to LACMA, the Los Angeles County Museum of Art. It was a beautiful day in Southern California and my wife, who has a Japanese heritage, was interested in seeing their display of Samurai art and armor. I went just to spend my day in a collection of art. I don’t care what I’m seeing; I’m thrilled by art of all kinds. And the Samurai exhibit was wonderful and I was with my beloved and the day was great. I could not ask for more.

And then, I got more.

As we so often do, Vicky and I took a random turn—you should try it sometime—and we ended up right in the middle of a retrospective exhibit of art by Pierre Huyghe (pronounced hweeg). Neither of us knew anything about his work. We didn’t know how the exhibit was laid out or, in fact, just what we were seeing.

But I found it amazing. You see, I had recently been facing a roadblock in my own art and I was looking for some way of either going around the roadblock or breaking through. Witnessing Pierre Huyghe’s work helped me smash through with an intensity I hadn’t imagined possible. As I near fifty, I find it both shocking and thrilling that I can still be stirred to such passion.

As we left, however, I couldn’t help but notice those inert individuals once again. Even in the museum, I noticed people who walked through utterly unmoved by what they saw. We drove home on the freeway surrounded by people unfazed by the world around them. We were caught in the midst of this mighty river, built by human hands, in the midst of thousands of cars, built by human hands, and I watched people totally unaffected by it. I went into my house where I was surrounded by love and comfort and memories, and I thought, “How can some people go through their lives and not notice how inspiring the world is?”

The world can inspire you if you let it. It could be the world of nature or the discipline of science or the magic of art or the feeling of love or any of a million other things. The world is filled with inspiration no matter what your needs may be. Even when you consider some of the worst things about the world – take global warming, for example – inspiration can still come to help us create solar energy collectors that are making alternative energy sources cheaper than fossil fuels.

And if you are one of those people I describes as “inert,” if you found this article somehow by accident, the world is just waiting to inspire you. You simply have to let it. You don’t have to be an artist to love art. You don’t have to be a naturalist to love nature, or a diver to love the ocean, or a flautist to love music—the world is there, just waiting to inspire you.

All you have to do is engage and open yourself and look around. Inspiration is simply the first step towards actually living your life—loving your life. It’s right there, waiting for you to let it happen.

About the Author

Author and Playwright, Ken La Salle grew up in Santa Ana, California and has remained in the surrounding area his entire life. He was raised with strong, blue-collar roots, which have given him a progressive and environmentalist view. As a result, you’ll find many of his stories touching those areas both geographically and philosophically. His plays have been seen in theaters across the country and you can find a growing number of books available online. Find out more about Ken on his website at Ken La Salle is represented by Loiacono Literary Agency, LLC.

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