Creatively fulfilling what we will to fulfill or creatively fulfilling what we have committed to fulfill requires a free mind. A free mind is one for which the incessant thoughts of distraction and worry cannot enter. It cannot enter because no value is given them. No nurturance is given them. It cannot enter because the attention is so fully focused engaging in the creative act that there is no room for any external or extraneous thoughts to enter. It cannot enter because the commitment for the creative act is so complete that there is no commitment for anything else.
A free mind is one which can play in an emotional and intellectual safety. A free mind is one which is free of self limiting notions of how things ought to be done and free of self limiting beliefs which restrict the nature of the play. The mind at play is a mind playing for the sake of the play. The celebration is in the play, not in the result. How paradoxical it is that to be creative and get a result, be creative in fulfilling a responsibility, meeting a commitment, or achieving a goal, we first must give up our seriousness, give up our limiting beliefs, and give up our desire of the result. By engaging in the magic of play, by feeling the celebration of the play, we can develop the result easily and quicker than in any other state of mind. But if we concentrate on the desired result we become serious. And this seriousness constrains our ability to develop the very result we seek. This paradox is the nature of the magic of play.
So what is the difference between the mind in serious action and the mind at play? A serious mind is one which is lusting for a result. If the result is not obtained, there is failure. There is disappointment. The mind in serious action is already constrained by its own seriousness. There is no celebration in the serious action. The serious action is an adult action, a proper action, one which is consistent with all the aspects of the adult world we have bought in to. The serious action is a conservative action, having a dimension of being consistent with or preserving something of the internally or externally held status quo. And this is so even if the serious action is one which is to promote change. If it did not preserve or protect some aspect of a belief or a status quo, why would it be called serious?
Seriousness means the ego has an involvement. The ego is self. Self cares about self and the garment of the self which is the role played by self. Self only cares about self. Self cares about status, about appearance, and preserving self. Self does everything it can all the time to make sure that self does not get hurt. Self is always so serious about self that it can never let go and play. And when self is permitted to act this way there is separation. All our internal resources are no longer focussed on solving the problem. Some of it is diverted into a passion for the result. Some of it is diverted and becomes concerned and perhaps even worried about getting the result. Now, we can no longer act in the unity of the play. We are in part divided against ourselves.
And we can only play when we give up self. Giving up self does not mean to become completely selfless. It means to keep self in its proper place and importance. When it is the creative action, the engagement in the process of creation, which itself is important, then the importance of the self, in comparison, becomes negligible, so insignificant that for all practical purposes there is no self.
In the play there is only the action of the play. There is no sense of a doer of the action. There is only consciousness of the beauty of what the action creates, manifests, and reveals. There is only affirmation for all of it.
The play has no necessary rules. Any such rule would constrain the play. And the play must take place in a context which is entirely safe, intellectually and emotionally. Safe means that the situation in which the play takes place is one in which there is no worry of not achieving the goal. Indeed if anything, there is a belief that the goal will be achieved. Even stronger than belief, there is the knowledge that the goal will be achieved. The question about whether the goal can be achieved never even arises. There is certainty. The goal will be achieved. The knowledge and information required to achieve the goal is already at hand in the intuition. What remains is only the delight in engaging in an action to externally and publicly demonstrate what the intuition already knew: that the goal has been achieved. And who is this intuition? The intuition is that part of us that already knows the answer or solution. The revelation of its knowledge can only happen in the play.
What is the nature of this play action which is to externalize a goal already internally achieved? The nature of the play is like a caring and carefree love. All the elements of the play are to be cared for, to be nourished, and loved. The play is not a game of competition. Each move of the play, each piece of the game is respected, honored, loved, touched, understood, and known through and through. Pieces are moved and rearranged. What is being created is a piece of fine art having its own esthetic world.
The art becomes more and more beautiful as the play goes on. Out of the corner of our eye, we notice that a flow has developed. We throw ourselves into the flow and in those moments we become the flow. The arrangement completes itself. The goal has been achieved. We have had no ego involvement. The child has had an enjoyable play. It has been a magical celebration. Yet nothing technical has been done. Only the inner beautiful art has been revealed. To fully develop this at the outer physical level requires the technical and more mechanical doing, working in the world of manifestation. This is like sending in the worker bees to build and complete the outer physical structure already conceived and completed in the inner play. The play was the real action. The outer completion of the physical structure is only a mirror reflecting the light revealed by the play.