I was asked today, “What is it that your heart beats to?”
Aside from the different passions we may have in our lives–whether it be for music, for writing, for fashion, or for photography, etc.–I sought to look for the real, underlying “thing” that makes us so passionate about these things. The thing that really makes us hunger for whatever we find in our loves or passions, or the thing that make us feel a particular way. It was about that “thing” that really makes us feel connected to something.
Then I thought to myself, “Connection?” Huh. (Picture a light bulb coming up into my mind.)
I remembered that our hearts, when we feel the most emotional about something, is not always from a source of happiness or joy. Our hearts beat to the suffering, the pain, and the angst… for it is what makes us respond and act towards something. And, for someone like me who tends to crave and thrive off of that suffering, that suffering is what makes life feel more real and apparent to me. When I suffer, I feel “alive” and find that the things I truly love become more significant in my mind, for they were never more important to me until the moment I felt that suffering. The things I loved acted as my savior. They saved me.
As I continued to sit there quietly thinking about the topic as others were offering their input, I thought to myself that all love is based off of connection. Without a connection to something, our lives would become meaningless. Now, I’ve had my fair share of times feeling very much alone, whether it be completely enjoyable and refreshing or utterly scary, but, I believe we were all biologically-made to connect! When we lack that feeling of love or appreciation or connection, we break apart. We lose motivation to live. We stunt our growth. We lose our enthusiasm for living. Connection is what brings importance to our lives. And it’s important not to ignore it.
I find that that connection to something–not only with another person, but whether it be in music, in writing, in the tangible things, or in faith–that connection lies at the heart of all of our souls:
Like music to me and playing guitar, I found that it brought a certain sense of comfort to me upon first discovering it as I grew up. It was a gift I found that allowed me to express my quiet nature through an art form that allowed me to be, and share something powerful, through word or through music, with another. With the communal act of music, it’s also easy to bring people together. And music is what brought me to other people. At the times I felt most alone, music soothed me. It eased away my loneliness as I lost myself with the sounds of my soul–it was something that truly responded to me, in a way that no other thing could. It really listened to the thoughts and feelings inside of me, and struck a chord within that I couldn’t find anything or anyone else doing. It is things like these–like music to me–that makes our very existence feel as if they have a purpose. It brings significance. It brings a connection to something, and perhaps to someone.
Like all art, we seek the experience of our daily lives to inspire it. Life itself is an art form, as the beauty and the suffering we find in it can spur creative thought. At the core of all art, it would be nothing and would not exist if it weren’t for the connections built in our souls to give it its significance. Connection is what brings life its significance. People are what inspire art. People give us a reason to say something. And people are the ones who make these very lives we live, mean something. Is that not what all art seeks to do?