Nested Feng Shui is excited to feature Jonathan Blake as a guest writer. Blake is a popular standup comedian who hosts The Calm Comedy Hour in Los Angeles. His background is in Buddhism and clown. His show Conversations with Myself: A Eulogy for Old Stories opens October 30th.
I recently performed a solo show, I perform stand up comedy, and when I came home, my being alone felt different than before I had left for the show. I started thinking that the more performance opportunities I have, the more helpful it will be for me to get used to those transitions. To have the focus and attention of a roomful of people for an hour and then to leave and be by myself is a profound experience. I decided to use my closet as a visual metaphor for fullness and emptiness.
On the left, a closet space filled with my clothes and books. On the right, emptiness but for drawers. With the sliding glass door, I’m able to slide back and forth between the fullness and the emptiness as well as letting one side be my focus. And if at anytime I choose, I can bring a little from the left over to the right but for now I like that there’s an experience of some separateness. The idea of only keeping what’s essential is very important to me right now as well and being honest with myself and saying “I knew I thought having this item was a good idea at one time but I’m not in a place where I can use it or pay attention to it so I’m going to let it go.” With each item I release, I feel a greater ability to focus on what I do have and the thought of knowing everything that’s in my room, in my closet is very appealing.
A quote by Ram Dass that I really appreciate is “Everything in your life is there as a vehicle for your transformation. Use it!” Why not use my room as a vehicle for my transformation? I like the idea of my room as a place to hold space and to allow that space to inform all of the objects that space contains. I also appreciate the idea of bringing the emptiness I have when I’m by myself into the fullness of my performance and bringing the fullness of the attention and love of the audience into the emptiness I experience when I’m by myself. And I don’t intend to mean ‘emptiness’ in a negative way, more like quietness, space, and stillness.
Since I brought this visual focus and intention into my life, I’ve found myself sleeping better, breathing easier, and it sparked a delightful conversation with Tracy that led to this blog post. Thank you for reading.
Conversations with Myself: A Eulogy for Old Stories opens October 30th
More of Jonthan's Musing