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Our Walk in the World: Fitting Things Together

Mark Nepo
The word art comes from the Latin ars, which means craft or skill. But what kind of skill? If we look further, the word’s Indo-European root means to fit together. At the heart of it, we could say that art involves the craft or skill of fitting things together. As such, it is a lifelong capacity that lives in everyone, for part of being human is the never-ending task of fitting things together. So, art is a creative, expressive means by which we come to understand our human experience. We could say that a perennial purpose of art is to discover harmony through the ordinary ritual of making things. Whether we create a wheel, a garden, or a relationship, it is by fitting things together into a working whole that we make sense of being alive. The capacity of art that lives in everyone is a seed of transformation we each carry, a way of knowing and making that can lead us to what is true over what is great, a way of searching that can lead us to what is worth celebrating over any short-lived illusion of celebrity. By trying to create, we are created. By trying to express, we are expressed. By trying …

Mark Nepo will be teaching at Pine Manor Retreat Center in Lake Elsinore, CA, and Embry-Riddle University in Daytona, FL, in November. See for details.

About the Author

Mark Nepo moved and inspired readers and seekers all over the world with his No. 1 New York...

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