The Co-Creative Muse and the Purposive Process of Entelechy
Dr. Barry Hammer
I find that the best kind of creative insight and inspiration, in any field of endeavor, comes from communing deeply with other life presences, in heartfelt, open-minded, responsively caring, empathic attunement with them. The more deeply we invest our heart, mind, and senses, in communion with other life presences, experiences, and activities, in the world, the more does the energy-heart core of our own individual and relational being become stirred or “magnetically” amplified through that relational connection. That relational amplification of our individual energy field is the source of enhanced powers of perception and performance, as the basis of true greatness, vitality, creative insight, inspiration, and productivity in any area of endeavor. Our productive work activities, and, indeed, our entire life, can become a truly beautiful artistic expression, or an expression of heart-fullness (wholeheartedness), when we permit the connective energy of heartfelt empathic communion, genuine caring, or true love to flow through us and amplify or “turn on” the core of our own individual being.
Deeply investing our whole being in heartfelt communion functions like a bridge of connection, between our conscious attention, as knower, and any object of knowledge that we encounter in that way. That kind of fully invested, caring, empathic, communion enables our conscious attention and feeling energy to incisively penetrate through the surface appearance of other individuals and phenomena that we encounter, and thereby contact their numinous, luminous, inner being or sacred living energy presence shining, radiating, or manifesting in and through their visible outer appearance. That incisively penetrating experiential contact, arising from unreservedly investing our whole being in communion, produces profoundly illuminating, insightful, understanding and inspiring appreciation of whoever or whatever we commune with. When individual hearts or energy centers resonate in deeply invested attunement with each other, they amplify each other, like magnets, releasing the co-creative process of synergy, like electricity flowing only when an electrical plug and socket, or positive and negative electrical poles, are connected to one another.
However, as long as the heart, or the energy feeling center level of our being, remains egocentrically, narcissistically, selfishly, self-absorbed, or self-possessed, we will be able to make only rather shallow contact with others, with only the superficial levels of our awareness. Without heartfelt communion, the mind and senses, by themselves alone, can contact, understand, and appreciate, only rather superficial aspects of reality, and provide only a relatively shallow, mechanical, lifeless, stale, mode of functioning in the creative arts and/or other endeavors. When the mind and bodily senses function independently of the feeling energy of the heart, aroused through a process of non-dualistic communion with our whole being, then our perception and performance is, to a greater or lesser extent, divorced from the source of vitality, limitless possibilities, and incisive creative insight abiding, in latency, within the deeper core of our own being. That is why I agree with what St. Exupery wrote, in his book, “The Little Prince”, “One sees clearly only with the heart. Anything essential is invisible to the eyes.” I might add, what is essential in life is also not available to the analytical intellect, functioning independently of the deeper, relational, insight of the heart, because the analytical mind tends to be self-absorbed in its own thought, instead of making direct experiential contact with other life presences, phenomena, and activities, in the world. That kind of direct experiential contact or heartfelt communion is in contrast to a more egocentric way of viewing and relating to others, mediated and distorted by the narcissistic ego mind’s self-seeking agendas, judgmental demanding expectations, predetermined conceptual interpretations, and distancing abstractions.
To make direct, deeply penetrating, empathic, contact with anyone or anything, and to tap into the relational source of co-creative insight and inspiration, we must let go of predetermined interpretations and abstractions, which function like an opaque filter, distancing barrier, or distorting mechanism, keeping the mind incessantly self-absorbed, or narcissistically recoiled, in its own thought, and blocking direct experiential contact and heartfelt empathic communion with actual life experience in the world. The philosopher Martin Buber describes that kind of unmediated, undistorted, fully invested, experiential communion as the I-Thou relationship, in contrast to the conceptually mediated, distancing, egocentric, I-It relationship. In Biblical terms, this is the difference between experiencing reality as though through a “poor reflection”, or “a glass darkly” rather than “face to face” (I Corinthians 13:12). Communing with the enduring living presence, or living spirit, that the author of any creative work has infused into a particular creative production can empathically reveal the meaningful intention and originating inspirational experience of that author or producer. The reason why the originating source level of creative insight and inspiring production comes from relational communion is because it is an intrinsically relational energy, or reality, rather than a solo, divisive, dualistic, or separate, narcissistically self-involved, process. Therefore, introspective processes that produce greater self-involvement, and break off heartfelt communion with others, cannot reveal and release the highest level of creative functioning.
Caring human relationships can also facilitate beneficial transformations of individual people, interpersonal relationships, and global society by enabling the power of love to gradually transform individual hearts, and the collective spiritual heart of humanity, from selfishness, fear, tension, and brutality to relaxed inner and outer peace, and unselfish caring about others. The relational energy of empathic communion, genuine caring, or true love is able to reconfigure and thereby heal discordant, disruptive, or toxic patterns of energy within and between individuals, as well as expansively rippling to exert a benign influence on wider social and physical environments. Caring communion or true love naturally produces a regenerative energy pulse that revitalizes, improves, and heals various aspects of individual life, personal relationships, and society.
The connective centripetal energy of caring communion produces a corresponding momentum of self-unifying, self-organizing entelechy, which facilitates the emergence of greater levels of order, harmony, advanced structural development (cohesively integrating progressively greater levels of complexity and simplicity), and productive functioning, and offsets the opposite distancing centrifugal momentum of entropy, disorder, disintegration, chaos, and degeneration. That connective life energy substance, arising from non-dualistic communion between individual life forms, also connects them to an unlimited core, ground, or root level of their own being, beyond the narcissistic ego’s self-limited, self-enclosed, self-defined sense of separate, unrelated identity.
When the connective energy substance stirs, amplifies, or impacts the core level of our being, that “magnetic” relational contact of heartfelt communion activates the seed-like purposive intention, prototype, or archetypal soul-blueprint of our individual being to unfold, and develop its fullest range of individual and relational potentials, predispositions, and innate patterns of structural development. The “magnetic” elicitation or arousal of our formerly dormant or latent potentials, inclinations, abilities, and talents, through a process of fully invested relational communion with objects of knowledge other than the narcissistic ego, contributes to the progressively greater cumulative unfolding development of our natural purposive destiny in life, as a process of self-organizing entelechy. This process of connecting to the transformational, cumulatively developing, purposive core entelechy level of our own individual being, by connecting and “magnetically” resonating with other individuals, metaphorically resembles a seed that sprouts and blossoms to full flowering or fruition when connected to the relational ground of being, represented by the universal soil, water, fresh air, and sunshine that breaks open self-enclosed shells so that the individual plants within them can be nourished and prompted to fulfill their natural genetic code or innate blueprint of development.
Fully invested non-dualistic communion is a co-creative process in the sense that the various participants reflect back to one another, and “magnetically” arouse, formerly dormant aspects or levels of their being to unfold their natural innate potentials, abilities, proclivities, and interests. Our responsive insights about other individuals and our caring contributions to their further constructive development also directly arouse and contribute to the progressive cumulative development of related aspects of our own being. Sublime qualities of our individual being such as, beauty, joy, wisdom, and creative talent often remain dormant or untapped in us until and unless they are shared through a responsive process of giving and receiving of caring energy, or expressing those grand qualities from our own being, as well as recognizing, appreciating, eliciting, and arousing the preciousness or grandeur that is inherent to what is experientially genuine in other individuals. The process of exchanging caring energy with other individuals objectifies, manifests, reveals, amplifies, and further develops aspects of our being that were formerly unknown to us and/or previously untapped by another individual to whom we relate. This co-creative process of experiential communion brings greater levels of vitality, fulfillment, wellbeing, self-understanding, and productive functioning to all participating individuals.
Like a process of inner alchemy, our co-creative communion with other individuals and phenomena that we encounter brings to the surface the hidden treasures formerly deeply buried within the core of our being, which contributes to the greater development of those precious, grand, aspects of our own individual being. This transformational process of inner alchemy also brings out the best in us by infusing us with greater levels of regenerative vitality and holistic experiential intelligence that are inherent to the relational energy substance that connects us to others in caring communion with them.
The collective psyche of humanity, or society, when united to the universal spirit of communion, love, or the Divine, can also advance to progressively greater levels of cumulative development of our inner resources. This advancing cumulative development of the collective psyche of humanity could involve greater development of qualitative noetic and performing capabilities, serving as finer instruments with which to experience and express “high definition” appreciation of the relatively fluid, non-localized, numinous, luminous, or sublime aspects of reality, to match, balance, and constructively guide the corresponding cumulative advance of our outer resources, involving materialistic sciences, technologies, and productive capacities, studying and influencing relatively more quantitative, precisely measurable, localized aspects of reality.
When the harmonizing, balanced, cohesive energy pulse of warmhearted communion, genuine caring, or true love is neglected and absent, then pragmatic utilitarian activities such as science, technology, industrial production, commerce, and consumerism become increasingly misguided, conflicted, and toxic, as do creative arts, entertainment, and recreation. Human products and activities become healthier, or more harmonious and regenerative, when aligned with the natural holistic relational flow of organic and experiential energies. Nothing and no one can function well and be well understood in isolation, apart from the responsive relational contexts in which everything and everyone are naturally embedded. Healthy living, in harmony with the natural relational flow of energy at all levels of reality, requires responsive mutual adjustment to our human community, natural environment, as well as the flow of energy within and around us.
Perhaps there is a purposive intention for the connective flame of Divine or spiritual love to shine or glow through all aspects of the outer world, infusing it with much greater beauty and wonder-full enchantment than it would otherwise possess by itself alone. Consistent with G.W.F. Hegel’s view of the cumulative progressive development of the Absolute Spirit, humanity or society can achieve greater satisfaction and wellbeing by fulfilling the basic purposive intention or entelechy for the spiritual reality of life, and its limitless inherent grandeur, to gain ever greater self-knowledge through our endlessly growing relational self-discovery and self-development. Such a cumulatively developing appreciation of the limitless creative potentials, grandeur, and powers of functioning that are inherent to the relational reality of being or life can also serve to revitalize and creatively transform all aspects of human culture and society, particularly the creative arts.
Anyone who wishes to read more of our inspirational/transformational insights should see our two published books, 1) Psychological Healing Through Creative Self-Understanding and Self-Transformation. (ISBN: 978-1-62857-075-5) and 2) Deepening Your Personal Relationships: Developing Emotional Intimacy and Good Communication. (ISBN: 978-1-61897-590-4). The primary author is Dr. Max Hammer, with contributions from secondary authors Dr. Barry J. Hammer and Dr. Alan C. Butler. These books can be purchased from Amazon, Barnes and Noble, or our author/publisher website, http://sbprabooks.com/MaxHammer. The latter website also posts our other blogs, and describes our books and us as authors.