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Reflections of a working writer and reader

 

 

Outer Life; Inner Life

Everyone tells us about the outer life. The media, television, radio, newspapers, magazines, even bloggers. The government and its retinue of propagandists are forever telling us how much better the outer life is since they got the power and how much worse it’s going to get once the other guy gets the power.
They tell us, repeatedly, about the developments in science, how people are dying in their hundreds of thousands in the worlds’ current blackspots, what they’re doing about waste disposal and how they’re preserving at least some green areas for us to walk in.
The job of an artist is to report on the inner life and it is the inner life that enables us to distinguish ourselves from aduki beans. Sorry if you’re an aduki bean. I needed a metaphor.
When we ignore the nourishment of our inner life, of our imagination, we become capable of extreme cruelty. We tend towards destructiveness.
I try to explain to my member of parliament that although I appreciate his budgets are tight for all the necessities of the outer life, he cannot afford to completely ignore the needs of the inner life.

11 Responses to “Outer Life; Inner Life”

  1. Pearl says:

    Yes, it’s funny. One would think that inner-life maintenance would be first priority and yet it keeps sliding down the agenda like so many raindrops.

  2. Maxine says:

    Give me the inner life any day. And I’m not even an artist.

  3. skint writer says:

    You are so right John, a healthy inner life, reflected in a healthy culture makes for a healthy society.

    A healthy society means less crime, less social problems, less need to spend huge amounts of money on tackling these problems.

    less doctors, less social workers, less police, less war, less need to buy into the myths of consume, consume, consume, less damage to the planet . . . .

    it’s bleeding obvious –

  4. Inkling says:

    Inner life seems to be taboo in public these days. Unless you’re a celebrity.

  5. Hope says:

    I came across your blog while doing a “whim” search for inner/outer life in preparation for a gathering of a Circle of Trust (aka Parker Palmer’s A Hidden Wholeness) later this week. Thanks for your voice of acuity and reason. As a teacher at a prep school in the States, I feel the tension of balancing content objectives with soul recognition. Our children need to be intentionally taught to recognize the gifts of their inner lives, not as an alternative to “book-learning” but as its highest complement.

  6. Amiel Sac says:

    Inner life or outer life. I think we should really take care of our inner lives first. I agree with you on that. After all, we cannot give what we don’t have. If our inner lives are orderly, then we most likely create order in our outer lives.

  7. azenith says:

    I have to agree that some people have the tendency to focus more on their outer life. Sometimes I also focus on outer life since I usually work online and watched television. Maybe if people would pay attention to their inner life, then they could make their life more productive and meaningful.

  8. John says:

    I’ve to agree inner life should be priority, more and more I’m realizing personally that it’s very true the solution is within me but most of the time I catch myself searching outside, maybe I’m finally maturing, lol.

  9. Carlos H. Ortega says:

    “I think we should really take care of our inner lives first.” Yes, I agree with you Amiel Sac. Before getting involved outside, let us see first what is happening inside us. It all begins with ourselves.

  10. Kenneth D. Otero says:

    Hi John, I definitely agree with you on this. People nowadays are too occupied on their physical needs and money and money. They often forget about the necessity to cultivate character and values. It is important to note that the moment you are free and clear on the inside, the outside also becomes easier and lighter.

  11. Kenneth D. Otero says:

    “The job of an artist is to report on the inner life and it is the inner life that enables us to distinguish ourselves from aduki beans. Sorry if you’re an aduki bean. I needed a metaphor.” May I say that I specially love this part. Truly our inner life is that important.