“Merely to be is insufficient, to exist an inadequate objective; to progress, to develop, to produce – herein lies the fundamental separation between being and living. Herein lies growth, fertility, renewal. This is vitality: the unencumbered, unreluctant ability to build, ever to facilitate rebirth.”
Finishing this manifesto has been harder than I expected. The longer I let this segment sit untouched, the more it solidifies and becomes complete. But I want a fourteen-foot tall print of it on the east side of the gallery, so it needs to be longer, more developed. It needs to go more in depth into its relation to the entirety of the installation. I want the two pieces to merge, but be disconnected slightly, enough that it will make people work to recognize the inherent connection…
In other news, I had a very clarifying talk tonight with my good friend, Tara Riordon, about love languages and how easily intentions can get lost in translation when two parties, no matter how close, try to bridge the separation between their respective ways of showing affection. There is the added complexity, of course, of love being a two-way street; it is never enough just to love a person in the way they need to be loved, because you also have to accept love in the way they are capable of giving it. This concept seems so clear, so obvious, reading through it, yet it struck me earlier as being something I had just failed to recognize all along. Or maybe my own relationships (both platonic and otherwise) have just been so cluttered by my clumsy attempts to build love on my own terms, that the reality of the simplicity of it all has been entirely neglected.
I find it interesting that love, ostensibly the most selfless of all endeavors, is also the easiest to use as a defense mechanism. Pelting love like bullets at some predetermined target. They are debilitated. You are the caring hero. Meanwhile every resentment, every fear, every strand of hatred is muted by the onslaught, out of sight, out of mind.
I found this quote some time ago, and have always associated it with someone I once knew, someone for whom I thought it seemed composed specifically. It was only tonight that I realized how significantly more vividly I am reflected in it:
“Your task is not to seek for love, but merely to seek and find all the barriers within yourself that you have built against it.”
Love lost, it seems, does not so much remove some half of our former selves, as it merely lets us recognize that all we ever did was attribute our own humiliating defects to their fundamental flaws.