Just started reading David Ulrich's latest blogpost and recommend it. I listened to David speak at the recent Hawaii Book & Music Festival and found what he had to say quite wonderful. I too am interested in the spiritual aspects of reading, learning, and creating. Read "In Defense of Books" and look at the rest of his blog. You will be rewarded.
The recent revelations by Ed Snowden remind me again of the ethical dimensions of our actions—a subject that Dag Hammarskjold returns to several times in his personal account Markings. Hammarskjold says, among other things, that our positions do not give us the right to order people to act; instead, they give us the responsibility to live in such a way that people can follow our orders without compromising themselves. He also says that the most dangerous thing is to conceal the truth so that it may one day emerge.
Regarding the TED talk and radio interview I posted yesterday: a few comments. When I heard Andrew Stanton speak, it was some minutes into the interview. I didn't know who he was or what he was talking about, but I was taken by his words and wanted to continue listening. I had seen Toy Story 3 and Wall-E, so that allowed me to piece together his general subject and guess that he had a direct connection to the films' creation. His reference to John Carter confused me, though. Unlike the other two, John Carter is not an animated film and was not successful. I couldn't be sure that the film I had intermittently watched on a plane flight to Virginia was the one Stanton had made.
Doing some research last night, I uncovered an interview in which he talked about the film and his inability to make it successful. He said that he hoped people might one day appreciate it, just as audiences did with The Wizard of Oz years after it was released.
Inherent in attempts to succeed is risk, and artists and writers being what they are, risk becomes constant companion and friend. Every once in a while, it becomes enemy, and then the temptation is to cast it off. Casting off risk is like wrestling with an angel, though: in the effort, one learns something about oneself, and that bit of wisdom is what's represented by the angel's name.