Friday, June 27, 2014

By All Means Paint

Six Sunflowers by Vincent Van Gogh

“If you hear a voice within you say you cannot paint, then by all means paint and that voice will be silenced.” 
― Vincent van Gogh

On a beautiful summer day, Van Gogh's sunflowers imitate reality with their brightness and lively color. I am always amazed by the intensity of the blues and golds that Van Gogh used. Every stroke brings the image to life. Every slight shift of color infuses it with movement.

His quote also amazes me. I cannot count the number of times in my life I've heard that voice saying, you cannot....  Many times I didn't listen, I simply did whatever I chose and let that voice fall into silence. There were some times, however, when I did listen. Maybe not to the full you cannot...., but certainly to the voice telling me that I was better off where I was, doing what I was, staying the path I was on. That voice keeps me abreast of the status quo ~ or closer to it than I might have wandered otherwise.

 Do I regret the decision to listen to that voice? Sometimes. The truth for me lies muddled in between. Sometimes I wasn't ready to move on. Sometimes I wanted to be more adventurous. Sometimes I felt frustrated. Sometimes I was seeking a way out of that frustration. Mostly, I recognize that my life has been its own version of a miracle, filled with wonder and joy, adventure and challenge.

What does that inner voice say to you? Have you listened to the you cannot...? Have you moved beyond it? How do you feel about your choice?

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