Creativity As A Spiritual Response

diary girl hand journal

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June = Journals.  HMMM?

I am preparing an entire month of blog posts focusing on  journals and the process of journaling.  I plan to reflect on:

  1. what are journals?
  2. how have journals been used historically?
  3. what options exist in creating or keeping journals?
  4. journaling and creativity
  5. journaling and spirituality
  6. how can journal keeping be a creative and spiritual catalyst?
  7. what gets in the way of keeping a journal?
  8. when might we not want to keep a journal?
  9. what do we do with old journals?

Other questions may emerge as we go along.  Please be thinking all about journals, whether you are for them, or against them, and any questions that you may have now, or during the month.  I am SO excited by this topic.  I hope you are as well!

Warmly,

Meghan

 

Memorial Day

For those in this the United States who read this blog, I hope that you had a lovely Memorial Day weekend.

My holiday was indeed special as I was working on Monday as an activity coordinator with memory care residents.  It was a day filled with the usual schedule plus a time in which companions who were lost were remembered.  One person from Assisted Living spoke to me of the 1000’s who were killed and his four days in the water waiting to be rescued.  He was rescued, lived his life, and was sitting in a wheel chair at the receptionist’s desk wanting to tell his story.

Lest you think that it was all serious. There also was a delicious barbecue with ribs, chicken, and sausage.  The luncheon feast ended with peach pie.  Delicious!

My take away from my time with these residents as well as some in Assisted Living is the importance of their memories, their stories.  If you have a chance to listen to a Veteran recount his or her war stories, I hope you will listen, look at their pictures and enjoy their reminiscing.  I believe that it is necessary, and potentially healing to them, and possibly to ourselves as well.  It doesn’t have to be Memorial Day, Armed Forces Day, or Veteran’s Day.  Any day will do to listen.

I have no proof of this but, my assumption is that we all share in a collective trauma, or traumas, of war.  My grandparents and parents carried the often un-spoken experiences of World Wars I & II and  then there was the Korean War and Vietnam, and conflicts since.  As a person who grew up in the 50’s and 60’s, I am an inheritor of these often unspoken memories of lives lived, and lives lost.   How about you?  I can only imagine that others can tell stories that are perhaps even more immediate.  I believe that when we stop to listen to these memories, to give space to the unspoken, we may also give space to a moment of healing for them, for those they lost, and for ourselves.

Warmly,

Meghan

Creativity as a Spiritual Response

May Musings:

I am pondering the relationship between creativity, our spiritual responses and daily life.

In my own life, I have been focused on participating with an on-line creativity and business group (Momentum: Muse Driven Business facilitated by Jenafer Owen) as well as doing a medicine painting which draws from the deep experiential core of Apothecary (a painting experience facilitated by Shiloh Sophia and Jonathan McCloud.)  The on-line creativity and business group led me to look at my website and business goals through different eyes.  The painting was an opportunity to transform some old wounds.  Both have been transformational.

Recently, professional photographs have been taken for the website.  These small changes will bring a different presence to what has been there previously.  Once they are up, please let me know what you think.

The canvas I am painting will probably be mostly completed by the end of the month.  By the way, it is the first time I have painted with acrylics on a canvas in a very long time.  I believe the last time was around 1980.  I have done a lot of living between.  I am hoping to do more painting and other creative endeavors.  I will announce my studio page, and eventually a quarterly newsletter within the next few months.  These creative explorations have been nestled between other creative activities at work, and daily life.

While I am moving forward with these things and am feeling the call to further engagement in my on-line creative presence, my adult daughter has been experiencing what I imagine to be long-term, life changing, medical issues.  As she is also moving forward into new professional and creative ventures, the timing feels like a potential step backward for her and/or presenting unexpected hindrances when the way forward seemed clear.  The month has been spent holding my breath while awaiting her medical reports.  We have each experienced some anxiety and disruption.

I have learned from experience to not be surprised by this.  Although, I would like the path to be clear for us individually, and together, it often isn’t.  I have learned that I can’t wait until there is a more opportune time.  There is now.  I have also learned to not see creativity as limited to one kind of experience, rather creativity appears in the midst of work, learning, painting, driving the car, dishes, and family crises.  This does not minimize the pain and is not compartmentalizing the issues as a way of avoiding them.  Rather it is a recognition that this is indeed creativity: creation, destruction, change, love, hope and in the midst of it, a deep joy.  It is.  She is.  I am.  Today is her 36th birthday!  Happy Birthday dear one!

In June, I will continue forward and begin my exploration of creativity as a spiritual response.  The topic for the month will be “Journals”.  I also expect to be working on my first e-book, and will continue to update and revise my website.  It will be a full month. If I miss a post or two, it is because I am responding to my daughter’s medical issues or other pressing matters.  I will return.

With deep affection,

Meghan

Creativity As A Spiritual Response

I am living in the midst of a process of cumulative creativity.  I imagine this to be a possibility most of the time, if I make the effort to follow the chain backwards to the steps before my actions.

At the end of March, I entered into two new things.  The first was an opportunity to receive creative business coaching and support.  The attraction to this particular opportunity was that I would be engaging in creative and visioning process before engaging in the sometimes mundane tasks of running an on-line business.  The initial process was to look at my website through a particular lens.  I did.  This led to my focusing on some initial changes in my website.  Feeling the necessity of having a professional looking photo of myself on the front page, I inquired and received recommendations for good local photographers.

The person that I chose is indeed a fine photographer.  I had the experience of the photo shoot yesterday and in a week or two, and probably with some effort, a new photo of myself will be added to the web page.  Is that creative?  Possibly.

This is just one example.  I could give you many more that are swirling around my consciousness and creative practice at this time.

My point is that the sometimes small actions that we understand as part of a larger creative whole, are generated in community with others:  A person that I know from an on-line creative group invited one kind of movement forward, a group of strangers whom I have never met helped my make a connection that I might not have otherwise, and my own creativity is enhanced because of their creativity and kindness.

What do you become aware of when you look backwards to see the chain of experiences and events that have led you to experience or deepen your own creative practice?

Creativity As A Spiritual Response

The blogs posts for today and the foreseeable future have changed from a monthly topic on spiritual practice to an extended reflection on creativity as a spiritual practice, or more properly, a spiritual response.  As a creative, and as a person reflecting on creativity, I have come to understand creativity to be intrinsic to who I am, and who you are as well.  It also can be a participation with that which I call God, in which the Holy One invites us to be present and to create something new together.  What will it be?

I love this quotation from Christine Valters Paintner from her book, The Artist’s Rule.

CHRISTINE VALTERS PAINTNER