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Showing posts from April, 2013

Integrity, Shamanism and Closure

Holistic Equilibrium

One of my dreams for my job was to help institute a yoga and meditation practice once a week in our meeting room.  Sadly, for a variety of reasons it never materialized. Still, I realize I need grounding and centering in my life, as we all do, particularly artists and writers. We live and work, dreaming up stuff that is all generated from the head. The body and spirit suffer.  It is so important that it should be a mantra: body, mind and spirit must remain at equilibrium. But in this busy world, trying to work and make money, how do we do it?
My suggestion is to stay true to yourself in everything you do and to remember about the body, mind, and spirit connection as a daily practice. Even something as simple as deep, controlled breathing is calming and brings energy from the mind space into the body space. Controlled breathing is also relaxing enough that it can activate the spirit and bring you into spirit realm.
Another body, mind, spirit exercise is simply walking.  Walking encour…

Beltane & Clearing the Clutter

As I look forward to Beltane I am also reflecting on the things that are most important to me.  “Creativity’s Requirements” was an important blog post for me and marked a turning point in my thinking.  I bring up Beltane because it is the May 1st celebration of spring.  
Often I have written about spiritual cleansing and recently I have begun to revisit my friend Sandra Carrington-Smith’s book, “Housekeeping for the Soul.” Spring lends itself to creativity naturally as it is a time of fertility and growth.  Spring is also a time for purging the old, dried out matter in our lives and welcoming what is new and fresh to the mind, body and spirit.
As we move towards the important holiday of Beltane, I am doing some spring cleaning or housecleaning of my soul. I am considering what is most important and making way for those important things to have room to grow and eventually blossom by clearing out things that are toxic to growth.
I love spring for all the hope that it brings.  I love sp…

Headache and the Mind/Body Connection of Repression

I’ve been suffering with a headache for over a week.  If you can believe it, I even went to the hospital yesterday and received a battery of tests plus a muscle relaxant and pain medication through an IV!I’ve been completely overtaken by this headache.  I’ve missed work, important meetings and have been unable to write this past week.  I did a little Internet surfing and found some interesting things about holistic health and headache.“Headache - What is the Mind-Body Connection?A headache is a sign that the mind has overrun the body through forceful thought and impatience. As a result, you are feeling pressure from yourself because your thoughts are not in alignment with how you feel. You need to change your approach by allowing yourself to feel first, then act with your heart and mind aligned.
Though I don’t have a migraine, what is said about them makes even more sense: Migraine - What is the Mind-Body Connection? When your mind will not allow an outlet for your frustrations, you crea…

Critique Anxiety

Sharing one’s work, written or visual can be a frightening proposition.  You've slaved away in your studio, lost in your thoughts and personal motivation.  Then you and your work step out into the world to see what others see in the creative expression. For me, at times this stepping out into an unknown realm can be daunting and the prospect of doing it yesterday with my writing has left me with a headache. I am workshopping my fiction at Newberry Library.  Love the workshop, the teacher and there are many fascinating people and good writers in the class. I had been working on a new first chapter to my novel.  My original first chapter wasn't grabbing enough; it just focused on the protagonist’s everyday experience. The revised first chapter was difficult to write. After writing and editing it I was almost ready to cry.  It is sad and unfortunate, what happens to her.  She is a seemingly powerless teenager who gets abused repeatedly. Anyway, I felt vulnerable about sharing th…

Creativity's Requirements

I always knew that being creative requires space—preferably well-lit, roomy and comfortable.  The workspace needs your personal touches and it needs to be welcoming. I have worked in grand spaces, such as my ballroom studio, and tight places, like on my lap by a window, in hospital. Now I’m seeing that creativity has another distinct and demanding requirement—simplicity. In the case of creativity, the type of simplicity required is deep.  You need to be as drama-free as possible. You will need work/life balance, wherein you can leave you work at work and at home you can find space for your creativity in the studio. My creativity also requires quiet—sometimes complete silence, especially when I’m writing.  Most importantly creativity requires time. Time must be set aside to create fertile ground for creativity to flourish and mature.  Time is the most costly of creativity’s requirements. I’m not sure why it took me until this age to figure this stuff out but I’m grateful to the Goddes…

Friday: For the Love of Venus

Friday, the day of Goddess Venus, is a day of love.  I find that my creativity flows best on Fridays. It seems to be a day of getting in the zone and a day of process flow. I know a lot of people seem to blow off Fridays but I think its informality in the workplace adds to its tendency to aid productivity. Realizing you have done just about all you can do before calling an end to the week releases pressure and inhibitions allowing true creativity to take root.  I have long been an admirer and worshipper of Venus.  I seek her in the mindset of the days of old when she was a revered as a symbol of the divinely feminine. Within the femininity of Venus lies fertility of all sorts and with that there is power. This ATC I made last year embodies the mystery, symbolism and power of Venus.




Invoking the Muse

When I read my previous post I am amazed.  Amazed that 5 months ago the elements of my novel were already in place.  There was something really big missing though—the theme and the quest, because that only recently came to me.  Often in this space I write about creativity.  I am compelled to also speak of the Muse whenever I speak about creativity.  For me, the Muse is key.
The Muse will leave me for months at a time.  I wrote almost obsessively, working on this novel in the summer and early fall.  Then poof, the Muse was gone and with her, all my inspiration to write evaporated.  Just as mysteriously, she has returned and now I am writing again prolifically.
Is the Muse and Angel, Spirit, Ancestor, Goddess or a combination of all four?  I know of Angels, Spirits, the ancestors and goddesses and I believe the Muse is the Muse.  She is akin to the four but not one of them.  She stands alone, in mystery, a shadowy but generous figure.
I can use incense, candles, prayer, meditation—all …