The Philosopher Responds
The student approaches the philosopher with a question.
"When creating, what should I strive for?
"As an amateur musician, I want more people to hear my work. They say this won't make me happy. They say to do it not for fame but because I enjoy it. But when that number of followers increases, a little excitement rises within me. Should I write, not with others in mind, but myself?
"Certain things I do for myself. Certain things I do for others. I feel like composing should be directed to another, a means of communicating that which bare words may not convey. Music is powerful, that they do say. It can bring people together, like minded. It can push people apart, differing in inclination. Is there music that does not divide?
"After a point, I feel that another follower will matter little. Each addition, a little bit less. Yet they are real people, individuals connecting with me, finding value in my expression. They listen. They respond. At first we dialog. After a while, we cease. Each addition, more time, more effort. The person withdrawn, a figment in its stead. Increase in fame without genuine gain. Yes, in that they rendered truth. Fame does not bring happiness. But, just this still is lacking, for joy comes through communion, not creation in isolation!"
The student turns. The philosopher looks up from his phone.