Life works in mysterious ways. I had already planned a different topic for this newsletter, but I decided to postpone my mailing when I realized that you’d just heard from me. So, I postponed my writing too and that gave me time to read David Brooks’ piece in The New York Times called “The Moral Peril of Meritocracy.” It was not at all what I expected from the title and it was also the best description of this journey that I have been on that I have seen thus far. He talks about life’s journey as being comprised of two mountains. The first mountain is that of the ego, characterized by striving for success. However, as he points out, many people find themselves in a valley due to some crisis and only then realize that there is a second, more important mountain. He writes:
If the first mountain is about building up the ego and defining the self, the second is about shedding the ego and dissolving the self. If the first mountain is about acquisition, the second mountain is about contribution.
That “Money Mountain” that I described in last month’s newsletter? That was definitely my first mountain, representing external financial success. I’d been on that mountain and found it lacking. So, I turned away from it toward the second mountain of my authentic self and joy. Why am I bringing this up in a newsletter about creativity? Because creativity was the path that brought me toward that second mountain. It was through my creativity that I uncovered my authentic self and found joy. Perhaps it is your path too?
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