A Little Faith

Sometimes you just need to have a little faith. I’m not talking about religion — I’m talking about education. One of the things I’m working on this semester is bringing some new exercises to some new(ish) artists. These exercises are on the newer side of things for this particular area but tried and true in others. The point is this: sometimes you’ve got to go along with something, even if it doesn’t make sense to you, to get the full benefit. If you only resist then you certainly will not succeed. It kind of reminds me of the saying that goes something like “you can’t win if you don’t play.”

The problem is that we get bogged down in our own ideas about how things are supposed to work. “No,” you think, “it can only be done this way” or “No, I’ve always heard that it was done this way.” The problem we encounter when disbelieve a new strategy from the beginning is that we never actually entertain the idea. We never allow it to blossom at all. We crush it immediately. This is justified, we reason, because it is clearly not how it is done. The problem, as always, is that we could be wrong.

Some of the best things I ever learned were things that I did in a state of confusion. The task was clear — but I didn’t think there was a valuable outcome. I didn’t think that there was any outcome. Most of the time I thought these assignments were either the ramblings of a lunatic or busy work designed to waste my time. Sometimes they were lunatic ramblings. Sometimes it was (sadly) busy work. Sometimes, however, it wasn’t. Sometimes it was the eye-opening moment of my life. Sometimes it led me to new discoveries about myself and the world and the things we were studying. So I plead with you briefly: embrace the doubt and confusion. Have a little faith.

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