Pursuit or attainment?

Jul 31, 2014

by Karen Speerstra

Runde SelfPortraitwithFrieda 7211 293x300 Pursuit or Attainment?

Is life about the pursuit…or the attainment?

Is it the journey or the goal? Cervantes was pretty clear about what he thought. He said, “The road is always better than the inn.” But is it? As much fun as the trip was, when we’re really tired, isn’t a clean bed at the end of a long travel day pretty wonderful? And the prospect of having a hot shower and a nourishing meal?

I was thinking about these “larger questions” including what keeps people doing what they love to do, even when it’s difficult, as I visited Katie Runde’s website. (She’s a friend who deserves your visit as well.)  Her attachment to cows will be pretty obvious. But it’s also apparent on a closer look that she’s in love with life itself. And with beauty regardless of how ephemeral.   That’s probably why she enjoys creating three dimensional chalk art. And how, as she states, each piece she creates, regardless of her medium, is a leap of faith.  As she says, it’s a deep trust on the part of the artist to know that “out of nothing but patient action, life will emerge.”

“My art is about process. Every piece begins with blankness and a moment of trepidation—a crisis point where that which loves to be in control meets that which cannot be controlled.”

At this stage of my own life when I’m approaching the end of the “road,” Don Quixote, forgive me, I’m looking forward to the “inn.”

I also realize that I still yearn to be in control of what as Katie and I both know, cannot be controlled. But her art teaches me that living is just about making the next brush stroke, the next pencil line, the next chalk mark.

The author, Peter Balin, once said, “Art is the attention we pay to the wholeness of the world.” The attention we pay to the whole world!  The journey and the goal. And every little baby step in between including all the trepidations, crises, and challenges. It’s worth it, because, as Katie reminds us, “Life will emerge!”