Art : Self-Cherishing?
Jon: As an artist, I wonder is artists are necessarily self-cherishing by nature? Is there a difference between being selfish and being driven in the creation of art?
Me: Artists need not be self-cherishing (as in being self-centred). In fact, the true artist lets go of ego, which allows him or her to create the best and most spiritual (selfless) art – that can benefit the most. To be selfish is to see the whole world and one’s works as centering around one’s self or from oneself, for solely one’s personal benefit.
It is possible to be driven spiritually without being selfish, if one’s motivation is to create art to bring compassion to others, to share wisdom with others. This drive is called Bodhicitta – the aspiration to seek enlightenment while doing one’s best to lead others to enlightenment.