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The Art & Power of Being Thanks to Bea Richards

I discovered something about myself. That is not the news; self-discovery is the stock and trade for every human who strives for Being. I discovered why I fall into moments of melancholy after I have spoken, taught, or written a great piece. I uncovered this mystery and its answer while listening to the great Queen, Beah Richards.

In the documentary of her life, “Beah: A Black Woman Speaks,” she quotes her teacher, the late Frank Silvera, as he defined being for her, saying,

“Being is mortal existence in a complete and perfect state, lacking no essential characteristic. Everything you need you have got, it’s there. Perfect but maybe not yet realized, but complete.”

She had earlier in the documentary described a moment at the end of a play she was in that she felt at the center of her “Being” as defined by Frank Silvera. She then said, and when the curtain dropped, I had to ask myself, “Now, who am I?”

I have felt this emptiness when leaving the front of the room, the stage, the podium, or finishing a written piece. It is as if my soul exited my body, and the transcendent consciousness that connected me to a stream of insight outside of myself is severed.

It is the power of expression, the great joy that can only be known in the moment of absolute Being. The moment you touch the center of your purpose and your giftedness radiates from you, and people lean in captivated, lured in by every word, every gesture, and inflection in your voice. This moment of Being, when all of the wisdom, knowledge, and experience you have accumulated is available to you, and the world makes sense in the context of that fleeting moment.

In that transcendent moment, you see the matrix of life in the context of that moment, that the hidden and indescribable patterns of existence become sight and meaning and words. These things pour out of you, spilling into the atmosphere, washing the over, and inundating the willing.

I discovered the reason I exist. To speak, to write, and to express with beauty and professionalism what many cannot. It is my life’s work and mission to be who I am meant to be and become more and better at Being.

Thank You To the Late Queen, Beah Richards!

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