It gives me great pleasure to grow things, although it’s been a few years since I’ve maintained large gardens. There is something so satisfying about dropping tiny packet seeds of life into the ground, then nurturing them to their full-blown potential. Sunflowers were among my favorite annuals, and a few of them always graced my back garden among the perennials.
Sunflowers are magnificent in full bloom, but as an artist I am also attracted to their waning fall beauty. I have drawn and painted them many times, as did Vincent Van Gogh. The other day I was searching for a few Van Gogh images for a short book I am now just finishing on self-realization. There are several large museums worldwide that have given open access to images of their collections. One of them is The Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York. (Also affectionately known as simply “The Met”.)
They have a few nice Van Gogh pieces, including one of some withered sunflowers lying on a table (Sunflowers, 1887). I have among my own art images several of withered sunflowers at the end of the season.
So here’s a question for you: Is one of the images below a “Van Gogh à la Susan Hart”, and the other “Susan Hart à la Van Gogh”? You may snicker at the suggestion of Van Gogh imitating me, however, that amusement would be based on several faulty assumptions: a) that time is linear, and since he lived before me, how could he “know about me”, and b), that he is famous and I am not, so again, even if time could move backwards linearly, how could he “know about me”?
Fame is not really the point here, as Vincent Van Gogh was not famous while he was alive either. My message is really about our perception of time, and our conscious awareness of everything. So…
Since time is not really linear (we just measure our lives that way) – all time actually exists at once, and our consciousness can connect to all ideas and knowledge in the ether throughout all time – it is not entirely impossible that he also “knows about me”. We are both huge lovers of sunflowers, so perhaps our conscious minds are connected simply in that shared passion for giant yellow flora.
It’s a metaphysical puzzle for your Sunday, one that may hopefully make you question why we live in a world that is so intent on keeping our conscious awareness, and therefore our experience of life, so small…
“Sunflowers”, Vincent Van Gogh
A clip from “Waning Beauty”, Susan L Hart
BTW, I will soon be releasing a book about a drawing course I designed and taught back some years ago. If you’re interested, stay tuned for the announcement, here on my blog and/or by my newsletter if you’d prefer.
Sunflower Metaphysics © Susan L Hart | Friendly comments welcome