"If a tree falls in a forest and no one is around to hear it, does it make a sound?"
This is a philosophical thought that raises questions regarding observation, human knowledge, and the perception of reality. What constitutes reality? Does something exist if it is not noticed? Even Albert Einstein participated in these questions, once purportedly asking another scientist whether 'the moon does not exist if nobody is looking at it.' How can you argue its reality if no one can prove it? Are our imaginations enough to justify believing such an existence? I suppose it's all done on faith, very much like religion.
Lest you think I delve into spiritual notions, my queries actually pertain to art.
If a piece of art is created and no one acknowledges it, does it still exist? Subsequently, do you create art for the sake of getting noticed or for your own soulful pleasures? If you do it to get noticed, do you put your heart into it and create whatever comes out, or do you try and appease to your followers, do you create to be liked?
I wrote a long essay about menstruation and my first immediate thought was that everyone would be repulsed by my ideas. But then I did a bit of research and found all these wonderful artists who painted with their menstrual blood. Wow, that’s brave, I thought. And beautiful. I also wrote an essay about infidelity and monogamy in general thinking it would go unnoticed or worst, silently misjudged. It got some positive attention; I was thrilled.
But does too much acclaim stifle you as an artist, or does too little do it? Do I write for everyone to like and agree, or to generate conversations and have people think? I don’t like people that agree with everything I say; in fact those kinds of people infuriate me. I know I’m not always right, and sometimes I talk way too much nonsense, so I respect you more for calling me on it. I hope it can be reciprocated, all with respect of course. I once told a friend that people don’t like it when you’re too honest with them. I might have been wrong.
I’ve been writing for a while but it’s only been recently that I’ve made my ideas really public. Years ago I started a fantasy, young adult novel which I abandoned when life got too busy. It was always my little hobby, for my own, exclusive, personal viewing pleasure, or as scary bedtime stories for the little girls in my household who always get too rowdy when its time to sleep.
But now that I’ve released some of my words to the World Wide Web I feel like those scary moments when you lose sight of your kids at the park. You know they’re in the gated confines somewhere, you reason they’re very likely safe, but you need to spot their little heads before you start shrieking like a madwoman. I don’t know if you got that analogy. (It’s okay to tell me if you didn’t) but the point is my scattered words gave you a glimpse of my soul and it makes me wonder what you’ll do with it now. And if you don’t notice anything I write from now on, does my soul continue to exist? Are my scattered words just windy wisps of pollen so transparent, so moving, so lost among the trees and the city landscape that if unnoticed they cease to exist?