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“In modern Western society we have reached a point at which we try to get by without acknowledging the inner life at all. We act as though there were no unconscious, no realm of the soul, as though we could live full lives by fixating ourselves completely on the external, material world. We try to deal with all the issues of life by external means — making more money, getting more power, starting a love affair, or “accomplishing something” in the material world. But we discover to our surprise that the inner world is a reality that we ultimately have to face.”
Robert Johnson, Inner Work
“We are called to become ourselves and since each self is unique, the calling comes uniquely to us. Learning one’s true way of fitting into this world often requires becoming unfit for regular duties and common expectations. What truly calls to us would have us go beyond the usual limits. In responding to the call we join the lineage of those who are burning with an inner fire; not simply fired up with the heat of ambition, but awakened to a dream and flame that flickers in one’s heart of hearts. A genuine calling further ignites the eternal spark originally carried into life by the soul and nothing can soothe that inner flame except that we fully respond and follow it through the world.”
- Michael Meade, “Fate and Destiny”
The year of my birth is a dragon year in Chinese astrology. Dragons are supposed to be fire breathers, tending toward an “eventful” life with radical changes, reversals and successes. So far, that’s the way it has worked out. Things haven’t gotten boring yet, although those who are close to me might wish for fewer reversals.
I’m also an extreme introvert. I keep my own counsel, confiding in my journals almost exclusively. My big splashy paintings give one of the few indications what may lie beneath my reticent surface.
I have a friend — I should call him a friendly acquaintance, maybe — who is a writer of some renown, also a dragon, It’s curious how we circle each other warily on the personal level but take great interest in each other’s ideas. I relate to ideas the way a gold miner relates to veins of gold. I’ll do a lot of digging to unearth a single nugget.