My writing teacher told us a quote the other day:

The role of the artist is to ask questions, not answer them. Anton Checkov

I’m grateful for my curious mind. Here’s hoping I never stop asking questions.


My prompt for this week was AWAKENING. Here’s how it was used in the books that I’m reading.

  1. Every fiber of my body wants to listen to what is on that tape. And every Holbeck text, call, and email I have received this week has reawakened that urge. Catherine Steadman
  2. She could feel the calluses on his hands, and something awakened in her. Carolyn Huynh
  3. Each day began with the reawakening of grief, like the re-slitting of a wound, and I found myself staggered with pain. Natasha Solomons
  4. Spring is about germination, about new life, a fresh start, about finding your form, about sowing and growing and awakening. Eveline Helmink
  5. On the other hand, stories about gifted people captivate us: Dragon Ball, in which talent is awakened by anger. Fumio Sasaki
  6. Stay there and breathe deeply as the white light awakens every cell of our body. Pedram Shojai
  7. Perhaps getting a deep, rejuvenating sleep awakens the sixth sense, which transcends the other five. Marie Kondo
  8. These reviews can be a rude awakening, especially if you’re not accustomed to submitting your work for criticism. Graeme Simsion
  9. Jungians tell us that upon awakening we have about a forty-five minute window before out ego’s defenses are in place. Julia Cameron
  10. As a personal political awakening, Guernica marked an astonishing turn. Hugh Eakin
  11. The First Great Awakening of the middle of the eighteenth century had failed to confront the evils of enslavement. Jon Meacham
  12. The hot crepe on a cold day awakened something within. Janice Macleod

Here’s how I’m looking at awakening:

  1. Awakening has a catalyst
  2. Can awakenings be bad?
  3. Does the best art stem from a big awakening?
  4. Can you produce art without an awakening?

36 thoughts on “Gratitude and mindfulness: 12/3/22

  1. Awakening is a great concept to focus on. I like the Kondo quote and believe her that “getting a deep, rejuvenating sleep AWAKENS the sixth sense” and I’m always the better for it. As for can you make art without an awakening, I’d say yes you can. It’ll just be art that lacks heart or emotion.

    Liked by 2 people

      1. Yes art can be created without emotions or angst. It can be created in a vacuum of emotion, for really there is no vacuum, just suppressed emotions. When art is created under those circumstances, art has a way of opening a person’s heart. That’s when it’s at its therapeutic best.

        Liked by 1 person

  2. I think that all great art comes from emotion and from imagination. Imagine the Sistine Chapel, The Odyssey without either.
    “To sleep. Perchance to dream…” speaks to the link between sleep and awakening.

    Liked by 2 people

      1. Thank you. But to be honest I hit the reply button before I was done. But I’ll just leave it there and drone on about something else. My wife is home so she’ll have to listen to it.

        Liked by 1 person

  3. Well of course I really find truth in that Checkov quote- and every time you ask a question you open a door to wonder and curiosity. Maybe an initial awakening or the opportunity to reawaken something that has been lost or missing. Questioning can aid in building connections as well, if we take the time to listen fully and be willing to explore all possible answers.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. I tend to think of awakening in a positive sense, rather like enlightenment even if what we are awakened to is negative. For example, if you are awakened to the frequency and horror of human trafficking, it is good that you are now aware of this very bad thing. Reawakening can be either positive or negative, and there is usually a catalyst or trigger for the emotions that come to the surface with a reawakening.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Awakening has a catalyst?
    Sure …usually, sex, shadows, or a comeuppance

    Can awakenings be bad?
    Sure again…ever talk with someone who claims to have just had an epiphany?

    Does the best art stem from a big awakening?
    I don’t this so. The best art stems from a delicate refining
    of one’s already cultivated creative workflow.

    Can you produce art without an awakening?
    You can produce art without a conscience.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Such a powerful word – and so many ways to express a thought with “awakening.” I think it can be good or bad. But I prefer to think of it in a positive sense. Art, hmmm, I think to be considered great art or expression, there has to be an awakening, but the act of creating art, good or bad and with or without an awakening, has all kinds of positive effects. I’m not an artist, but I like to color and I find it calming, so that has value. Great examples and questions!

    Liked by 1 person

      1. You misunderstand. Awakening is a concept of being open, or closed to something previously unthought. It has nothing to do with the concept of woke. They are two distinct and separate ideas

        Liked by 1 person

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