Focus on ‘here and now’
Multitasking is the process of doing many things at the same time. Above all, modern people in the 21st century are busy, so they multitask. As a result, you are always in a hurry and it is easy to do things roughly. Everything is easy to do in an instant, and society itself encourages such behavior.
In this fast-paced culture, many modern people spend their energy pondering the past and worrying about the future, unable to rest even if they have time. The same goes for older or retired people in this case. Such moments add more unhappiness than satisfaction.
However, the more this kind of person, the more time should try to live in the present. However, this does not work well with willpower and requires special training, one of which is mindfulness. It is to focus your attention on your feelings and sensations that are happening in the present moment without intentionally thinking about them.
An easier way is to avoid multitasking and get into the habit of focusing on one thing at a time. When you eat, just eat without thinking about anything else, watch TV when you watch TV, and play when you play. If you are taking care of your children, you really are with them and immersed in their activities. However, although I know this in theory, as I said before, modern people always live with busy schedules. Later, these things pile up and get wet with inertia, so you can't focus deeply on something without knowing it. There is a risk of living without tasting the depth of learning and experience gained through concentration and immersion.
At the same time, this concentration on life is achieved through disciplines such as meditation. The more experiences we have of being able to focus, the more naturally we can pull ourselves out of hatred situations and put ourselves on a peaceful and safe level of mindfulness.
I think painting is what helps to maximize the effect of this meditation and allows you to practice real mindfulness. Of course, when I say this, people question me. That is true for those who draw well. In general, people who think they are not good at drawing are afraid to start drawing. Even when they see a white empty canvas, they are terrified, quickly become discouraged by their own small mistake, and sometimes feel intimidated by the wonderful painting of the person next to them. These reasons rob us of the opportunity for mindfulness through painting.
How great would it be if painting could become a pleasure in its own right and a tool for meditation? As an artist, I am trying to find a way to do this. By focusing on the present and now.
Perhaps because of this philosophy, I do not correct the mistakes of my students who are learning to draw. And only the positive side of the picture is taught, focusing on the basic part. There are teachers who fix every little line until they like it, and there are people who criticize it harshly. But I think these things are obstacles to turning painting into meditation.
When painting becomes a pleasure and reaches a certain level, then it is enough to refine the shape little by little. I don't think they should be made afraid to enter the water before they can swim lightly in the delightful pool of painting.
This philosophy was created in Germany. After sending children to kindergartens and elementary schools in Germany, I observed their education. They seemed most afraid of wearing them down by infusing them with any kind of knowledge. They naturally helped children study with their own motives with interest. Teachers were playing the role of such helpers. I took this German-style education as a lesson in my education. And I thought about how important motives are when teaching someone or talking about something.
The same goes for painting. Interests and motives are like firewood. A lot of firewood needs to be put in to make the bonfire burn. But let's imagine that someone has to start a fire with only the firewood I split. Without me, that person would not be able to survive. I think education should help people make firewood like this on their own. In the case of painting, you should help them create their own interest and motive for painting.
So, how can we find these motives and interests? It is not made up of temporary, perfect tools or curricula. It is an investment that requires a lot of patience and time. In other words, in my own way, I think it is focusing on the present right now. I must find joy in the picture I am drawing now. And I have to find meaning in the little things I do. And you should appreciate it and enjoy it. Right now, today.
Myungja Anna Koh