The Blank Painting

Inevitably there will be some days when it seems that the world is conspiring against us.  You will have issues at work, relationships, health, finances, etc.  Sometimes these challenges have a quick solution but there as cases where it’s a long drawn out battle.  When that battle ramps up to a war of attrition, we cry out in despair and wish for the perfect life.  Do we even know what we are thinking when that thought presents itself?  What really is a flawless existence?

Imagine a white canvas in a brightly lit room.  It’s surface is perfect, no traces of color and the incoming light reflects of it brilliantly.  Now let’s let an artist use that canvas but using a pallete of nothing but white paint.  This person can be the most skilled at their craft.  They can work for hours, using many fine strokes to add as much detail as possible.  The end product yields the same result as what sat there before, the same blank canvas.  Despite all efforts, there is no detail, nuance, or shades of color.  You see, this is what a perfect life would look like, every moment would be brilliant but there would be no contrast to distinguish it.

The darker shades of life are painted in pain, they are there so you can resolve what you’re looking at.  The pain of loss for example highlights the joy of what you still have.  The figures of the painted begin to take shape.  The other colors are represented by the multitude of complex emotions we experience, it goes beyond happy and sad, good and bad.  With this said, perhaps it’s best to be thankful for those darker periods in life.

T

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