Hence, this quote:
"Men must live and create. Live to the point of tears." ~ Albert Camus
Men must live. No argument here. We come into this world not of our own volition. But with a will to live that is innate and strong.
Men must create. The premise is we are all born with a creative drive. With a desire to make something of ourselves, of our lives. With our hands, or our imagination. Or our DNA. To make something out of steel, or wood or words. Or fabric or ice. To build a car, make a home, write a novel, start a company, set a record, or bake cupcakes that look like owls. What? I've made those.
Image from Harbin Ice & Snow Festival in China
God is a creative being and we are made in His image, so I can accept that premise. We must live and create, yes.
"Live to the point of tears," says Albert next. Whoa. The two sentences he has linked together here captures me today. Plus, he went all "brainy quote" on us with this part.
If you've ever studied Aristotle's notion of the enthymeme (I realize that's probably only .02% of you) you know that syllogistic arguments lay out all of their premises and the conclusion explicitly. (Stay with me here and you will learn something they teach in grad school. You'll feel so smart!) But ethymeme arguments leave at least one premise or the conclusion unsaid. Generally the assertion left unsaid is intended to be so obvious as to not need stating. But sometimes it's worth stating it.
Albert left his conclusion unsaid. Let me show you the enthymeme in Albert's quote.
Premise one: Men must live.
Premise two: Men must create.
Stated Conclusion: Live to the point of tears. (in other words, live all in - even when it gets hard ... because you must)
Unstated Conclusion: Create to the point of tears.
So the second youngest recipient of the Nobel Prize in Literature gives us this message: Create all in.
Do your work, or your craft all in. Don't hold back. Don't quit. Stay in it to the point of tears. Stay in even when it gets hard or exhausting. Even when you can't seem to produce what is in your mind's eye, stay at it.
Keep creating. Because you must -- it's in you.
I needed to hear that today. I'm at the difficult part of a huge creative project. This is the "to the point of tears" stage. But I'm staying all in and excited to see what will eventually come out of it.
What are you currently creating? Are you all in? To the point of tears?