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Flavours of Thought : Flavour 18: Composition

Flavour 18: Composition

Excerpted from Flavours of Thought: Recipes for Fresh Thinking by Tom Evans

Sometimes what we need does not exist and we have to make it happen.

We have an amazing ability amongst living creatures to compose new constructs from elemental sources.

What we compose though comes from an idea that starts as an ethereal whisper — either our own or that of an external agent — which is then brought to our conscious awareness as a need or opportunity.

What is so good about the flavour of composition is that it is infinite in scope and reach. Even better is our ability to judge, appreciate and savour the fruits of the composition. We know instinctively when a perfect composition has come together. It is better than the sum of its component parts.

For example, a book is a combination of words. In theory, there are a limited number of words in any language so there is a finite limit to the number of books that can be written.

Well, all you have to do is compose a single new word, like a quark or a flought, and you have just doubled the possible number of books. Note that this is a limit that we are nowhere near anyway.

The same of course is true for disciplines such as music, art and science ... and, of course, cooking!


Composition is about 1+1 being greater than 2.

When you are in flow, normal mathematics go out of the window.

You put the same energy into the system as before but more seems to come out than you put in.

If you seem to be working harder than seems right and proper, pay attention to the learnings ...

...and remember to thank them for coming along.

Composition is a raison d'être.

It is possible to go through life as an observer and commentator. It is ultimately less satisfying though to be a film critic rather than an actor or set designer.

To fully embrace life we must build on what has gone before.

The only thing you can take with you is your evolution; the only thing you can leave behind is your art.

Composition is only limited by infinity.

If you know all there is to know and then combine two knowns to make a new known, you have extended the depth of the thought pool.

Each new bar of music, stroke of an artist's brush and the penning a new sentence, like this one, adds another building block to the collective.

So for today, create something new and observe as new doors open automatically for you.

Composition unites the disparate.

Entropy infers the Universe is decaying, the reverse is actually the case. The level of consciousness and awareness is rising in inverse proportion and the system is in complete balance.

The disparate parts are coming together and making more sense. This is how everything was meant to be.


Destruction is the force that decomposes.

Decomposition that comes from death is OK as it is part of the natural rhythm and cycle.

Wanton destruction however is the antithesis of the composing force.

New permutations

What two components, or more, could you combine today to fabricate something entirely new?

What 'compositions' have you appreciated recently?

What feelings do you get when things come together perfectly?

What disparate elements of your life could benefit from synthesis? •

Tom Evans Renaissance Man and Imagineer Tom Evans is the author of four books and counting about creativity. More »