Sunday, September 14, 2008

Lights, prayers--cocktails!

Right, so I've been under the weather this past week and I rested up enough to feel great for meeting up with two new friends for dinner and cocktails.

I had a wonderful time. It's always an inspiration for me, getting to know good people--the kind that are straightforward with you, have compassion, do what's right, share, and have integrity.

It was a pleasure. And hey, they like my art, too!

Talking with them--about friends that had passed away unexpectedly at a young age, or living a passionate life--brought to the fore once again what I had been struggling with in the last couple of months.

Interior design, counseling psychology--or continue, unabated and undistracted, with my art?

The interior design class I started two weeks ago is fun--I'm learning about the profession rather than design, which is helpful. Millions of people think they have a flair for design, but being a professional designer is something completely different--it's a profession.

That means dealing with clients, accounts, vendors, etc.--the business of being a designer. Does my passion encompass that?

How much do I know myself? How much do I think I know about myself? Everything keeps changing, that's for sure. I'm less and less likely to shame myself for not being who I (or anybody else) think I should be, and more and more acknowledging who I am (which I'm still figuring out). This is at the ripe old age of 36, mind you.

It's a luxury in this culture to get to know oneself, bombarded as we are by messages of how our choice of mobile phone styles reflects our personality. Really? Really.

In India, the men are privileged to go through a stage in life where they leave their families and other social responsibilities to go off into the forest to attain self-realization in their golden years (the women aren't so fortunate).

But I get to force the point. I don't have the usual obligations or distractions (not that I wouldn't mind them), so I'm in a marathon wrestling match with my self, the goal being self-knowledge.

I'm not so sure I'd like to be on the business end of interior design. Writing about it, maybe. Photographing and painting it, even more probable.

Or hell, just learning more about it and eventually designing my own home--that might just be enough.

Even with psychology--I wonder if the theories fascinate me more than working with clients. I worry if I will have enough empathy, patience, and more importantly, endurance to do such difficult work.

And what concerns me further--if I can do such work, do I have the passion for it?

I'm not sure. I'd like to ferret out my intentions, see them clearly without the haze of emotion, memory, and external authority, but as with my art, I have to do this through exploration and experimentation.

In the meantime, as I embrace my passion for interior design, I'd like to share with you a beautiful lamp I recently bought! I love bathing in its glow and can't wait to turn it on at night. Lying on my sofa and seeing it, I feel like I'm home.

I mentioned a prayer wheel in my last post, and this religious technology has been on my mind since watching documentaries on Tibet.

I bought a small prayer wheel from an exporter in Nepal who marketed the piece as a paperweight (it's far too light to weigh anything down, including itself) and received it in the mail last week.

It was falling apart until I took it apart and tightened the screws, but now I'm very happy with it and love spinning it, sending ripples of prayers and good thoughts out into the universe.

Whether it's the prayer wheel or my happy thoughts that makes the world a little bit brighter, I'll let you decide.


I wish you your best possible life.

Invite Beauty,

I.
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