Master of Fine Arts
I would like to share with you how I was able to shed my suffering skin for a life beyond my wildest dreams. My work is about the letting go, my work is about altering perception, my work is about exploring the depths of one’s psyche. My experience is there in every atom of my output and is there for the taking.
Blaise Pascal said “All of humanity’s problems stem from man’s inability to sit quietly in a room alone.” I am not well-read in the works of Pascal, I became aware of this quote through HBO’s hit period drama Boardwalk Empire where in season four, episode ten, mobster, Arnold Rothstein appropriates the seventeenth century theologian’s proposition for his own. One never knows where the voice will come from, you must learn to sit, quiet the mind, open your eyes and keep your ears to the ground.
1) Locate empty room; if a room is not available to you then any space will do, it is preferred to be a solitary space for beginners but the advanced sitter may find the most active of spaces to be quite sufficient. In the event that you possess basic engineering or carpentry skills or you have a close friend or relative that is a general contractor then you may construct your own room, all that is necessary is a floor, any will suffice, and a few walls, 3-4 preferred for the novice and as little as one for the avid sitter. Roofing is completely preferential.
2) Locate empty chair; if a chair is not available to you then any thing that can support your weight will do, a bucket, a milk crate, a table, a stool, a stack of books, a box, an empty tire, a medicine ball, a wall, a filing cabinet, a pillow, a bed, a mound of dirt, a plot of grass, a friend’s lap, a couch, an ottoman, a bean bag, a bench, a towel on the beach, or even the ground you are currently standing on. If you possess carpentry skills or have begun a relationship with a carpenter through step one then you may ask them to build you an ergonomic sitting device to your exact specifications. A note on comfort: although I would suggest a chair that is somewhat comfortable for the participant new to sitting, it is important for the sitter to experience some discomfort that they are able to move beyond without correcting while sitting. For example, while the sitter is sitting, if their nose begins to itch, it is important to not scratch the nose, to continuously let go of your thoughts until you no longer have a nose. So if the chair is pinching your thigh or the box doesn’t have enough lumbar support it is important to stick with the sitting form you initially chose in order to persevere through discomfort. This is an important lesson between need and desire, you may desire more optimal comfort but your body does not need it.
3) Now you are ready to sit. You have all the tools necessary and soon, all of your troubles will begin to disappear.
© Jason S. Wright
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VCU University Archives
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VCU Theses and Dissertations
Date of Submission
Available for download on Friday, May 21, 2021