Do you think there are differences between the quality of art you made before you started meditating and after? And by quality, I don’t mean good or bad, but more something like inherent attributes. That’s a real good question. I think that I see a difference of finding the thing more easily. It was more difficult before and now it’s more easy. And in working I had more fear and anxieties and, you know, negative things swimming in me that affected the doing of things. I felt weak. I didn’t have so much self-assuredness. Then when I started meditating I felt more freedom. And they say that the heavy weight of negativity starts lifting away when you start infusing this expanding consciousness. Infusing energy and happiness and love and all these things from within, negativity lifts. I always say negativity cramps the flow of creativity. It’s really true. Things just flow more and you enjoy the making of things way more. And it’s just like kind of like a dance. It’s real great when that happens.
So there was no change in terms of subject matter? Everything you do — when you finish one thing and do another, they’re different. But I always say it’s the ideas that come. The ideas are everything and the way you translate them gets better. It gets better.
I also have a question that might be too abstract for a good answer but– I want to say more about the other thing.
Yeah. Do it to it. Another thing that’s so important: this thing of intuition. There’s plenty of supercreative people that don’t meditate, but you just get more of that and more fun in the doing and have less of the anxiety and fears and the other things that stop a lot of fun and a lot of creativity. This thing of intuition grows. A kind of knowingness. I always say that’s the number one tool of the artist: Knowing when something isn’t correct and knowing how to make it correct is super important. It works in music, in painting, in cinema. It works in business. When you transcend, you dive into that ocean of knowingness. It’s an ocean of happiness; an ocean of creativity. It’s the ocean of the infinite. All these things are infinite there.
But the way people talk about transcendental meditation relies on all these metaphors and analogies and similes. Stuff like, “Your mind is like an ocean and all the activity seems to be at the top but there’s a vast space underneath.” But aren’t these metaphors inadequate descriptions of the experience of meditation? And if that’s so, has meditation changed the way you think about concepts like metaphor and analogy? That’s a real good question. There is a huge problem because quantum physics and mathematics and all these things are objective sciences and Maharishi’s science of consciousness is a subjective science. The word “transcending” — there’s not an intellectual thing that you can say that gives that experience. So I always say that it’s a unique experience. The word “unique” should be saved for the experience of transcending. People don’t really know the word bliss. Bliss is more than the happiness that you get from buying a brand new car, for instance. Bliss is like the happiness of when you fall in love with someone and that person loves you back. That’s closest to this extreme happiness and flow of love that is transcending. That’s close. Maharishi used tons and tons of analogies to try and get people to catch enough of an idea of the thing so that they’d say, “Oh, I want to experience that.” But nothing takes the place of the actual experience. Analogies and things still come and you use those from time to time to try and explain the thing but it’s abstract. The transcendent is the most abstract level of existence there is. It’s the source of thought. Total abstraction. It’s the source of a star, the source of a tree. Everything that is a thing has emerged from this field. It’s incredible and you can experience it and then you know what it is.
Do you ever try to relate the abstract feeling of transcending through your own work? Not exactly. No. I don’t think I’ve ever set out to do a thing, except maybe in commercials. But sometimes I catch ideas and I fall in love with them and then later on I kind of discover what it is. It’s a reverse kind of thing. I haven’t ever, you know, set out to make a film. Right now I’m working on a documentary of the Maharishi and the knowledge that he brought out and that will be a huge challenge because these things are abstract. To try to show them visually or with sound is gonna be something.
What’s the last creative thing you did? Let’s see. Well, I did three things yesterday. I haven’t done anything creative this morning. It’s still early. I’m just getting to it. But yesterday I wrote some lyrics. I’m working on a photograph of a Country and Western singer named Billy Swan. And I’m working with wood. I’m making a cabinet.