CREATIVITY and invention and the art of discovery and application, involves an inspired and happy mind which does not cease to rejoice and marvel at possibility. Never believe that Van Gogh was an unhappy man or that at all times he dwelt in soul-sorrow. Quite the opposite, he was at his supreme best in times of creative work. His painting testifies to this, and the commensurate periods of discontent that he would shift in and out from.
It has been said that no man may take more joy than another without too experiencing those periods of lull in episodes which invoke also a certain pain or discomfort; and in measure this is true. The saints who would deny themselves given pleasures and would not draw from the well of worldly gratification, certainly enjoyed the happy offspring within the inner soul-life; and this was well understood by them.
It is a question really of exactly what we should choose to give ourselves over to in the experiences of bliss and ecstasy, rather than total denial. Were there not the rhythm of extremes from one condition to another, there should be no conscious comparison between the stimuli that the individual experiences. It is necessary to be both joyful and sorrowful, to be both rested and refreshed, and then experience tiredness; to know of intensity and reflection, to experience great empathy and passion, or repulsion and dispassion. All in all we do experience the highs and lows in such rhythmic episodes, which as springboards move us onward into other realms of understanding and experience.
One may know of the discipline of withholding oneself from certain temptations in order to effectively carry out one's daily duties. Of course too, many feel that the course of their life has of itself denied certain pleasures they should rather partake in. However we do know that restraint is necessary and this personal discipline is carried out more often than one might acknowledge. Strength is formed out of this, as the bank of happiness and happy attitude rests upon such streams of temptations. Those happy times do come of themselves, and if not found in indulgence of one form shall emanate from unexpected and unexplored regions.
One can literally exclaim "I am saving myself", saving oneself for the experience of further happy times, rather than using the experience and expression of joy in more of the same that has certain provocation. One may take enormous pleasure in a single cup of coffee. The same pleasure does not continue if one has ten cups of coffee one after another. One may save that experience for an episode much later, as those ten cups over five or ten days will delight far more than ten in a single morning. Equally so, one cup of coffee in ten days will be even more appreciated. And what if there was no coffee in ten days at all? Then the commensurate enjoyment is to be had in another beverage. That enjoyment itself will not be denied, but shall be realized in tea, milk, water or whatever. This is how it works.
Duty requires us to give time and effort to her when it may appear far more desirable in the pursuit of happy experience, to be conducting oneself in a completely different fashion. However, there will be no more glee or happy circumstance experienced on continual holiday as there will be on the job. Where there are great 'highs' to be had, they are most assuredly followed by their great troughs of compelling 'lows'.
We have endeavor, involvement and experience. The nature of the endeavor: the spirit, the color, the commensurate motivation and so forth, this is of first importance- purpose and the knowing of purpose. Then the involvement which invokes the experience, and involvement which in turn colors and motivates us again, renews our set goal by firsthand experience- restates or rebukes our original design or intention. Then thirdly comes experience, for experience always follows come what may.
The artist does not create because it makes him happy, and he does not seek to derive happiness out of such creating - but! he does create out from the condition of happiness. Happiness in its turn comes to him and is transformed, is exalted personally into inspiration. The essence of happiness is that of an application which is rejoiced in, creatively worked upon and exalted through love and devotion to the work.
When the gods go to work to weave the fabric of the stars and configure conditions for realms to seek their expression in, do they labor with grudging complaint or with love of their work and their said station? Even they must take of rest also, and cannot partake in the continual bliss of such satisfying a creation.
Van Gogh was at his happiest when he gave over what happiness was due to him, and through his great conflicts and unease at worldly experiences and adjustments, he then would arise from such a trough and give all that he had to inspiration.
So one comes to know that there shall always be so much happiness, followed by equal amounts of impeding and balancing - contrasting quiescence and the personal endeavors are of first importance therefore. Also too, if one gives over the happy times and denies them in part, one may use such creative flow for inspired works that speak of the Divine and its applications.
We may labor for a period and then turn to our favorite creative expression - music or painting, gardening or chiselling, chess or conversation, our favorite book, or imagination, our prayer, our contemplation. We labor, and in doing so we are saving ourselves and then consciously directing that creative force which we know as happiness into that which we may live and embrace and work with further.
Therefore we must not give over to lower passions and desires which have us depleted and spent of all of this vital creativity. But like riding a wave, when the ebb turns to flow, throw ourselves into the divine pursuits that shall carry us through to the shores of Heaven!