Working together to achieve common goals in nothing new in human societies. In fact, it is an observable phenomenon through the universe: here on Earth, our entire ecosystem is founded on the basis of cooperation to achieve a common goal, that of survival. Humanity began working together for the same reasons. We discovered that in working together, we were more powerful, and in doing so, were able to take down larger prey that, as individuals, we could not. As this new found discovery rooted itself in our conscious selves, we began to understand that the benefits were much greater than the simple ability to acquire more meat. Social animals of all stripes recognize that cooperation is key for not only survival, but for a healthy and rewarding life. Without cooperation, the many modern marvels of the world would not be possible (albeit, regrettably, for only a select few of us): teams of many hundreds of disciplines work together to construct monolithic steel structures, stretching far into the sky. Researchers from across the globe work together to discover cures to common and devastating diseases. In our cities, smaller groups of people work in close quarters to maintain business as usual.
Collaboration is an idea that exists at the very foundation of the human experience, and yet it is something we each spend very little time considering. Every aspect of modern life depends on the many billions of people working together for the greater good. And at the root of it all, the same basic premise guides our actions, much as it did millions of years ago: survival. As our species evolves through cooperation, we have developed the concept of "free time": the idle moments in our daily routine where we can choose to do what we like with ourselves. The options have become fairly limitless (for the privileged few of us) to do whatever it is that pleases us during this time. Of course, the many distractions of western culture plead for our attention through various mediums wherever we find ourselves, in the real and virtual world. They strive for our attention, with the ultimate reward being a moment of our time, and a portion of our valued money. It is a system which works well to perpetuate consumerism, with no bounds or limitations, as it was designed through the model of capitalism. Don't fret: it seems I've trailed off the topic of collaboration, but here I mark a return..
Alas, as the community of artists here on DeviantART has surely discovered, the art of creation has found its way into our daily routine. We have discovered the reward of the creative spirit that exists in each of us. We understand that the time we spend invested in our various creative outlets is rewarding for ourselves, and sometimes even for others. The act of creation is a simple task, and, as history dictates, it has been apart of human lives for many thousands of years.
As is the case with every artistic outlet, we take into consideration past experiences, observations, values, and any number of other variables while composing of our work. Without these past experiences, we have no basis with which to create. In a sense, our creations are directly attributed to every individual and moment that we have interacted with. So, our creations are not necessarily our creations. They are instead everyone's, as interpreted by us. As I see it, the act of creativity is a process in which we tap into a vast pool of energy and thought, a pool in which we are all apart of and which we all have access to. Creative outputs come from an outside source, and we are simply the receivers and interpreters of this source of inspiration. When you are involved in a creative endeavour, do you not notice that at your most 'successful' work has come while in a deep trance like state? You have spent hours invested in something, and it seems as though only minutes have passed? In these moments, we are channeling the great energy of the universe. We are momentarily tapping into a vast pool of something greater than any one individual being. Now, I understand that on the surface, these observations may sound like some fanatical hippie do da. I don't expect everyone to take such observations seriously. I also don't expect everyone to come to the same conclusions as myself. Also, my explanation might not do justice to the experiences I've had. For more impressive interpretations of this idea, I invite you to peruse the minds of Terrence McKenna, Joe Rogan (yes, that Joe Rogan), Alex Grey, and many many others.
The possibility that our creative thoughts and ideas comes from an outside source in nothing new. I simply hope to bring to light an idea that some might not be familiar with, and that others may feel obliged to discuss further.
Watching: my cat sleep
Drinking: green tea