Empathy As Creative Art
...and How Creativity Rules the World
“A trip to the bookstore is the ultimate exercise in empathy. Within it, you will find endless opportunities to see and understand the world from someone else’s point of view.”
Jamila Rizvi, Australian Writer, and Columnist
In recent weeks, an abundance of creative thoughts has been coursing through my head. Much of this can be attributed to the smorgasbord of books I have been reading of late to close out 2022.
Maria Brito, in her epic book How Creativity Rules the World says that “empathy is the key to thinking differently, a cornerstone of creativity in entrepreneurship and elsewhere.” As a lifelong eastern philosophy enthusiast, Brioto’s view reminded me of the human-heartedness tenets of Confucianism where empathy (Ren) reflects the power of acknowledging and creatively becoming one with another person’s thoughts, feelings, and emotions.
Recently, I was privy to this very experience while interviewing Keli Daniels, founder of DarkHorse Goods for a “Great Books, Great Minds” feature article. While listening to her maneuver through her story about books and how they have illuminated her intrepid travel experiences I was struck by the mindful presence and verklempt emotions it elicited inside of me.
My reflective takeaway? Rare encounters like this which embody deep heart and emotion have a way of rattling us out of our stagnation and complacency, helping us to become more creative in the process
Brito asserts that creativity is an infinite resource that can be discovered by anyone. Through the poignant examples she shares throughout the book of successful entrepreneurs and seven-figure artists, she makes this creative mindset accessible and actionable for you.
She says in the book:
……“Step outside your comfort zone. Read magazines, books, or newspapers, or watch movies or shows different from those you would normally go for. Find the other side’s perspective. Go further; read or watch stories that usually wouldn’t interest you. Whatever is distinctive or even in opposition to what you would normally do, that’s where you’ll start to find your new sweet empathy spot.”
And in a full nod to empathy, she adds:
“Empathy is the opposite of self-absorption. It is a vital part of creativity and innovation. After all, how can we serve others’ needs if we don’t have a grasp on how they think, feel, and behave?”
Other “Great Books, Great Minds” articles to consider reading that complement this article include “What If Your Life Were Effortless,” “Finding Your Focus and Flow State,” and “My Zen Encounter With a Motorcyclist”
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Diamond-Michael Scott, Chief Writer, Curator, and Global Book Ambassador, Great Books, Great Minds