Hello. My name is Maxwell MacArthur. I'm an artist living in the Pacific Northwest. I wanted to share a little bit about myself and my life personally on this page.

My life and my identity essentially revolve around three things (that is, three things in addition to the art I create). I often, though not exclusively, create art related to these three things.

In no particular order:

1) My sexuality.

I am a gay man. I've often heard people say that folks like me shouldn't make our sexuality the entirety, or even a large part, of who we are. I'd say anyone who has that choice is lucky. I grew up in a small town around large amounts of homophobia. I'm certainly lucky that, as far as I know, there was never any homophobia or general LGBTphobia related violence where I lived, but the attitudes and behaviors were pervasive. I can't make my sexuality a smaller part of my identity because, due to being raised this way, I struggled most of my life with this aspect of myself.

I often write about romantic themes in my poetry. When I do, it's always with another man in mind. I'm a hopeless romantic. What can I say?

2) My religion.

I was raised Protestant Christian. Growing up I believed that the dinosaurs didn't exist because they're not in the Bible, the Earth is 6000 years old, and LGBT people are an abomination. In high school I went on a mission trip with my youth group to Mexico. On the drive toward the border, we stopped at an IHOP. When we went inside, my youth pastor stopped everyone to tell us that at a table up ahead there was a gay couple sitting together and the most loving thing we could do is just ignore them and not even look their way. I looked anyway. It was the first time I ever saw a gay couple together.

There's a lot more I could say about that incident, but suffice it to say that it was probably the beginning of the end of me being Christian. Slowly and over a long period of time I began to question more and more aspects of Christianity such as the concept of Hell and inerrancy of the Bible. I searched far and wide for spiritual truth and ultimately landed in the Baha'i Faith. Again to keep things short I won't go too far into details, but I would ultimately leave the Baha'i Faith as well due to issues with the administration and growing disagreements with the theology.

Today I'm a practicing Buddhist of the Jodo Shinshu school. Jodo Shinshu (or just Shin) Buddhists believe that by reciting the name of the Buddha Amida we can be reborn into his pure land where we will unfailingly reach enlightenment. We then live a life of gratitude toward Amida and all the causes and conditions of life that have led us to faith in him.

3) My illness.

I have been diagnosed with three mental illnesses: Generalized Anxiety, Schizophrenia, and Attention Deficit Disorder. It has recently come to light that my diagnosis of schizophrenia was almost certainly incorrect. For years I had symptoms of schizophrenia and presented as such but one day without warning most of those symptoms disappeared. I am baffled as is my doctor. You can read more about it here.

I have written at length about mental illness and specifically schizophrenia symptoms most notably in my works titled Stories of Eternal Return, Fever Dreams, and A Psalm for the Pure Land.


If you would like to contact me about any of the above or for any reason, I have a contact page that lists a few ways I may be reached. In time I will add a contact form to this site but unfortunately I am not able to as of now.