Inspiration and Letting Go
Updated: May 3, 2020
"Let yourself be silently drawn by the strange pull of what you really love. It will not lead you astray." -Rumi
I snapped this image in the Netherlands a couple of years ago through a dirty tour bus window one rainy, cold morning. I was sitting by the window and just happened to look up as the sun broke briefly through the clouds. Luckily I managed to pull my phone out fast enough to get the shot. It is a raw image taken on an iPhone 6, no filters applied, and I think it is beautiful.
On the other hand, here is one of about 50 pictures I took the other day, really striving for something nice. I'd spent a good amount of time planning out my camera settings, location, and time of day. Armed with a fresh cup of coffee, my camera and tripod, I set out early one
morning with the hope of creating what I saw in my head. But I hadn't expected the storm that moved in the night before, so when I got there nothing went as planned. I tried anyway and spent about an hour walking the canal, waiting for a sun that never came out. Despite my time and best intentions, there's nothing beautiful about my best shot.
And I think these 2 experiences sum up such an important lesson about letting go, being in the moment, and allowing inspiration to guide us. It's true that creativity can be staged and the things we want can be "made" to happen. We can spend hours or sometimes weeks brainstorming, planning, and hammering out every last detail to make something work. And yet sometimes the most spectacular moments or ideas in life are the ones that are inspired, not carefully crafted. They are the ones you almost missed but didn't, because you followed the urge to look up at just the right moment.
Life isn't always about pushing or planning or being in control. Those are things we do to feel productive or worthy, or to minimize any risk of failure. But the ability to let go, to sit in the joy of a moment and let those soft impulses lead you on the perfect adventure is a delicious thing. For as Rumi suggests, it is that quiet voice within in that knows our heart's desire.