Wise Words on Listening to Critics by Michael Gungor

Here are some words that I thought were packed full of wisdom on how artists are impacted by criticism by Christian singer Michael Gungor,

Gungor-Critic“The critic’s voice is so powerful because it resonates with the voices of our deepest fears, those voices speaking from inside of us, telling us that we are not good enough. The critics confirm our repressed and terrified suspicions that we don’t measure up, that we are unsafe and unlovable. We can hear ‘Bravo!’ from ninety-nine voices, but they don’t mean nearly as much as the ‘Eh’ from the one. The voice of the critic can be like a hot dagger that reaches the heart quickly and surely…Creators are prone to listening too intently to the voice of the critic. We change ourselves and our art to please the critic so that we can feel safe, feel like we are worth something. but the critic doesn’t care about your work in the same way that you do. The critics’ voice is most often the voice of the preoccupied-a voice concerned with its own issues and its own ego. You are just a brief flicker on its radar screen. The voice of the critic is not sturdy enough to build your work on. Its’ too fickle, too fleeting. On the other hand, the fact that the critic is not as emotionally invested in your work can actually make the voice of the critic quite helpful when listened to properly. The critic can help the artist see weaknesses and falws in the work that the artist wouldn’t have been able to see on his own.” (Gungor, The Crowd, the Critic and the Muse, chapter 2)

About mattdabbs
I am a minister, husband, and father. My wife and I live and minister in Saint Petersburg, Florida. My primary ministry responsibilities include: small groups, 20s and 30s, involvement, and adult education.

5 Responses to Wise Words on Listening to Critics by Michael Gungor

  1. eh.
    😉

    Wow. What a great quote.

  2. Richard Kruse says:

    I’ve learned more from the hurt of criticism than the joy of praise; but, I still rather hear praise.

  3. One “Well done, good and faithful servant” from the right source is worth more than all of the criticism of all the critics in the world! Consider these words: For am I now seeking the approval of man, or of God? Or am I trying to please man? If I were still trying to please man, I would not be the servant of Christ. But it still feels so good to have the approval of our peers!

  4. I have always admired Michael Gungor’s wisdom. This was a very interesting read. Thanks for posting it!

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