There’s a reason it’s called communion; that passing of the passion so many of us remember from going to church or mass or whatever religious institution you were forced to attend as a child. (Hopefully you only attend as an adult because you want to.) But I’m not talking religion here, unless it’s my particular form which is Creativity-Centered. I DO believe, I DO believe. It’s my passion and I find it necessary to pass that passion on if it is to stay alive and working in my own life, as well as the lives of others.
Imagine this: A group of women (or men or both) gather together to enjoy a weekend in the woods somewhere. They camp and eat and fish and swim and play and maybe drink a little beer or whatever. Some know each other well. Some are strangers in their midst. Then someone says, “Hey Mendy, why don’t you lead a writing workshop?” Internally I groan a little because I am here strictly to have fun. I don’t want a responsibility, even one I usually enjoy. But I say, “Okay,” because, well, because that’s what I do and I know darn well something good will come of it. It’s a job I not only enjoy, but feel divinely ordained to do.
I know that sounds like big talk, right? Divinely ordained, just like a preacher. Well, I come by that honestly enough. Admit it, there is something you feel “called” to do, isn’t there? If not, I suggest you keep trying out things until you find the passion that suits you. It’s out there waiting for you to pick up the gauntlet and holler “Yes! Here it is!” For instance, Leigh has been called to beekeeping. I believe this with all my heart. She has also been called to hospice work, which requires a special kind of person. Not just any nurse will do.
I am called to share my creative passion; not just to practice it but to pass it along to others so they too have an outlet for their need to create. We all have a need to create and the fact that there are so many people who work all their lives but never really follow their creative calling, as vocation or avocation, speaks to the state of the world. It is hard to be destructive when we are busily creating. We find a new passion for all life. Doctors, lawyers, politicians, and generals should all be writing poetry.
Back at my little gathering in the woods, I believe there were 7 or 8 of us. Several had not written in years. Some had never written while a few had a daily writing practice. We did three freewrites (timed writings where a suggestion or prompt is given and the writers don’t lift the pen from the page until time is called) which kept our inner editors out of the picture. Everyone shared what they had written. They didn’t have to–they wanted to. This phenomena, all by itself, is amazing. Some of us had never even met before this weekend and weren’t sure of each other’s name. It wasn’t important. What was important were our colorful perceptions, our shared hurts and joys and pleasures and the fact that we just wrote about them, using the language to heighten the senses and explore ideas and then share our selves with each other.
Trust, compassion, truth, bread, body, blood, wine of creation–passed among us in communion. With pen and paper we explored the good earth, the “original text” of creation as Thomas Berry likes to call our universe. We sang our little hymns of self-exploration and found we had more in common than we thought. At talent night, some of the women braved the throngs and read aloud to the whole camp. Oh, happy preacher of creativity!
This is why we pass the passion. It doubles and triples as it is handed from one to the other, like loaves and fishes, it multiplies. If you have a creative passion–whether it is writing, painting, cooking, sewing, canning, gardening, beekeeping–I beg of you, pass it on. I never beg, so you know I mean this. It could be the most important thing you ever do for someone else in your life, whether you know it then or not. You’ll have to take my word for it because I’ve proven it over and over again. Feed one another and pass the passion, please.