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It is clear that with time we all grow and age physically. During this time we experience life in different ways. Given that we come into the world physically and mentally normal by most standards, we are all able to do most anything with a fair amount of effort. Successes will come. Inevitably, with those successes we will have failures; what is most important is what we can learn from those failures. In each new experience there is something to be acquired, if nothing else the pure experience living life. The concepts of growth and progress are relative, but the idea is universal. We each seek to reach certain levels in all aspects of life. Some pursue these levels at a more feverish rate than others. Nonetheless, our greatest task is ascension.

 

I have grown in so many ways: through my education (formal and informal), my art, my family, and my spirituality. My hope is that I will never stop growing, more so in a mental and spiritual sense. There is a level of achievement that I want to reach in certain aspects of my life, particularly in my education and my art. I have set goals that I feel are attainable, in so much as they are things that I am truly capable of accomplishing. Some of these goals have come to pass while others are still in my sights and within my reach. I believe I have the capacity for greatness; I am simply making preparation for the opportunity. More importantly, I have the capacity to determine whether or not what I learn will be useful. Consequently, I have become unafraid to change because that very fear can stump my growth.

 

In my formal education there have been many successes and failures. My philosophy is something to the tune of: if I can learn from it, I am not a failure. That is what keeps me motivated and optimistic, and this is what moves me to take risks that many people won’t take. I am fearless when it comes to my education. Moreover, I love to use what I have learned; sharing what one knows is one of life’s greatest responsibilities.  It is how we perpetuate ourselves, our culture, our community, and our world. Life has presented many opportunities, some I have taken and others I have not. It is the knowledge that has come from my experiences that has guided these choices. I think that if you stay open minded, then change can be a pleasant and beneficial experience. It is this same open mindedness that has led me to new heights in my artwork. I believe that people who continue to make the same mistakes are unwilling to learn from the lessons life has to offer. It is this unwillingness that is symptomatic of the fear of change. Some things are simply unimportant, and that is for the individual to determine. What I have decided is that with each new experience I should try to find something that is useful. The basis for change is rooted in self constitution. In other words, as we learn we grow, and as we grow we change.

 

John Spriggins