The creative process is itself a symbol of Eternity
iMAGE: PHOTO OF ART OF TWO PEOPLE ABSTRACT
In my previous post, I talked about Fred Brooks’ insights on the transcendent properties of the creative process -- particularly from his experience with software engineering. He describes the joy of the creative process this way:
- The joy of creation
- The joy of service
- The joy of seeing your creation in action
- The joy of learning
- The joy of having free and limitless creative medium
Then, citing Dorothy Sayer’s book The Mind of the Maker, he sees creativity as having three important stages:
- The idea
- The implementation
- The interaction
The idea of this kind of progressive creativity that connects us to others is expanded on when Brooks writes:
This perspective is echoed throughout Mormon scriptural notions of divine creation:
A statement by Dieter F. Uchtdorf on the nature of creation in his talk titled, "Happiness, Your Heritage", from the General Relief Society Meeting in October 2008, affirms these similar notions of creativity and joy:
It is interesting how closely intertwined joy, interconnectedness, and the creative process are. It seems this kind of delight in seeing others find joy in your creations could be a fan for the flame of universal compassion. If God’s joy is in His creations (D&C 59:18-20) it is of no wonder that our souls feel transcendent joy as we are in awe of those creations and when we participate in the creative process ourselves. The child’s mud pie, the poem, the sonnet, the musical score, the mathematical construct, the new discovery, the painting, the program, and the ultimate creation of another human body; all give us a glimpse into the eternal nature of the creation. The joy of creation carries with it a glimpse of our posthuman and eternal potential.
Gaining knowledge, intelligence, and using those to create things in my life (music, software, relationships, experiences, family, websites, etc) is the chief source of joy and satisfaction in my life; and I want to seek out, become acquainted with, emulate, and even worship or venerate any being that has attained the highest form of intelligence and creative power. I've found that the Mormon faith powerfully orients me towards this goal.
While the details of exactly what 'spiritual creation' may be are unclear, this process of creating implementable concepts and structures mentally surely must play a pivotal role. Thus, as we practice and participate in the process of creation and exercise our faculties (mental, physical, and spiritual), we draw nearer to God and learn more about the nature of eternity. This is why programming is, and many other creative processes are so joyful. The creative process is itself a symbol of Eternity.