process vs. product
The other day while reading in The Artist’s Way, I came across this simple phrase, which I’ve been chewing on ever since – “THE PROCESS, NOT THE PRODUCT, WILL BECOME YOUR FOCUS.”
Of, course in The Artist’s Way, this phrase is connected to creativity….so it encourages a discovery of the creative process, not just a creative project. One lasts a lifetime, the other only a short time.
As I reflected on this phrase, I wondered if it can be applied to my spirituality….. “THE PROCESS, NOT THE PRODUCT, WILL BECOME YOUR FOCUS.” Hmmmm. I think it does!
But, in my spirituality, what’s the product? Could it be getting into heaven, being baptized into the church, being ‘saved’? Like most creative projects, these feel limited and finite. Begging the question – what do I do next? Or is there anything after this?
What does the “process of my spirituality” mean exactly? I’m not sure, but at least it feels more open and long term. Like it’s a journey or an adventure to embark upon. Focusing on the process of my spirituality would mean that I would seek to understand how it works, how spiritual practices affect me, how they transform me and others around me. Perhaps it touches on the process of mixing my spirituality deeper into my everyday life. So that my spirituality changes the way I buy food, the way I help the poor, the way I organize my time, the way I treat those around me .
“THE PROCESS, NOT THE PRODUCT, WILL BECOME YOUR FOCUS.” What other realms of life does it help with?
An example from the Bible that seems to say the thing about process vs product: The book of Deuteronomy ends with the people of Israel not being in the land of Israel. That seemed odd (since that seems the whole point of the first five books!) until someone pointed out to me that perhaps it’s not about the land. Instead it’s about the journey – and being in the presence of God.
Thanks for that insight Brenda! Spot on.