Come meander with me on the pathless path of the Heart
in these anecdotal,
sometimes inspiring, sometimes personal meanderings of the Heart's opening in the every-day-ness of life...

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Divine Drama...

I'm feeling a little myopic posting about my struggle with my creative process again when the world struggles in so much pain, unrest and violence.  And it seems that those of us on a “spiritual path” can sometimes get cloistered and self-absorbed in this way, as if we don’t see anything but our own path, our own struggle. Partly that is true…  And partly everything begins to be seen in context, within the context of the Divine Drama that is being played out here, that we are all a part of whether we realize it or not.  And so I speak of my experience with the creative process as part of the Divine Drama, as it seems a universal metaphor….
I am still “struggling” with this new creative process - although that is too strong a word.  I’m experiencing the creative tension between spontaneity and limitation, as Rollo May calls it.  I’ve been trying to pin-point what it is that I am “struggling” with or against, resisting and avoiding – and why…  For some reason what I paint and how I paint doesn’t feel like - me – my essential Self – doesn’t feel like it’s coming from an open, authentic place…  Maybe that’s what happens when one steps outside their comfort zone, and explores something new, one contracts - at first, even when one wants to open to the process. But maybe I should speak for myself.

What I want most is that which is Real in me to emerge – the Essence, Spirit – to express ItSelf – on canvas.  Instead, I feel like a sea anemone on a rock at the shore at low tide - vulnerable.  When being poked and prodded by a curious inquisitor - it closes.  I continue to feel like I am *trying* to paint, instead of being curious and playful and allowing – although I had a somewhat surprising breakthrough with that today.  But I’m still painting from my conceptual mind that wants to know what to do and how to do it and where it is going and how it will turn out – afraid to risk…  Painting does not flow naturally from somewhere deep within as I had anticipated it would, like it did when I “painted” with Craypas oil sticks.  As one dimensional as that was, I felt connected to something beyond my self…  It is safe to say that I have not found that Rhythm with laying paint on canvas – yet… I anticipate that will happen.  But it seems I have hit my edge early on… 

I expected everything would just flow easily, that art would be a vehicle to tap into that deep space of Inspiration – that deep well of Inner Beingness that *wants* to express, to create…  But I’m still waiting for that authentic expression to emerge – although I am beginning to see glimpses of it.  I realize that this is all part of the process – awareness of what’s going on internally, noticing how I approach creativity - and life: with anxiety, with a sense of fragmentation, vulnerability and protectiveness – which can only come from a fragmented mind; a mind set of separateness and alienation from the wholeness of my Self – and life - and “other.”  It gets reflected in the creative process – art reflecting life…  In that sense it has been an eye opener, and I need a different lens in order to see through the veil of separateness and fragmentation that causes so much unrest in “the system” - both individually and universally…  When we see life with a sense of separateness there is unrest, frustration, confusion, and struggle…

I read from Llewellyn Vaughan-Lee’s book (Fragments of a Love Story) one morning this week where he refers to a story he wrote several years ago about his spiritual journey.  He says: “it (the journey) is fundamentally the story of a fragmented self struggling to find something, to uncover and claim a deeper meaning.  But – it is also the Divine story (however you call the Ineffable), finding ways to bring ItSelf into consciousness.”   Interesting...  The Divine Drama *is* our story...  And our "story" is the Divine Drama...

What a paradox this art work is – adding layers of paint to a canvas, waiting for “The Mystery” to reveal ItSelf, while at the same time “uncovering” layers within myself that keep me from seeing “The Mystery” that is there…   For some reason that resonated with me as the “struggle” I am having with the creative process, which reflects the universal struggle with life - uncovering the layers of conditioning in order to see the Real within...

The ego-mind is beginning to lose its moorings – which is actually a good thing - but is also creating this struggle to maintain its hold, its grip on the process… But what is there to struggle about?  After all it’s really the Divine Drama playing ItSelf out, whether on canvas or in life. The mind evidently doesn’t know this. 

“The real mystery
is how IT unveils ItSelf
within us;
how the Beloved
makes ItSelf known
to ItSelf
in the fragile container
of the human being.

And in the midst of
the Divine Drama
there is a human story
to be told.
But it’s all ‘God’s’ story
being lived in human form.”

Llewellyn Vaughan-Lee
From: Fragments of a Love Story

Note: When Vaughan-Lee speaks of “God”
he is speaking of the Nameless, all-pervasive
Mystery that is everywhere, at all times,

 not a persona or image we have of ‘God’
separate from us that we normally associate
 with the word…

Photo: Just a little corner piece of a painting I’m working on…

If you are curious about the e-course I am taking,
it is Bloom True with Artist Flora Bowley.
It is a wonderful course, presented very well.
My "struggles" with the *process* are not a reflection
on the course, but of my own internal process.


  1. Some of my best art pieces have emerged effortlessly after I have strained and struggled, when I throw paint over the lot, spoil it and let go, something wonderful appears. However, I still go back to the same process time and time again, meanwhile a little voice whispers inside saying you know how it happens......... also my art tutor's voice from years ago saying "you can never spoil anything" :~)xxx

    1. That is sooo true! I'm *learning* to let go of all the layers and just let emerge what wants to emerge. It *is* absolutely magical how that happens! BUT - yes, that same stress comes right back in on the next piece. Amazing. Had several hours of painting yesterday and I'm worn out today - go figure :) Thanks!

  2. Ditto to everything you say here. My own struggle is between "play"and "what am I trying to do that is creative and new?" And then I fall in love again with a few strokes...sigh. Often I wonder if I'm schitzophrenic! However when I am deeply in the process and remember that I am one with the paint, brush, canvas, nature and spirit - I am refreshed. While I am propelled and thrilled by this, it is also confusing and frustrating at times - and find I have no choice. My heart leads here. Thanks for sharing your total (and the universal) process. I do not feel so all alone! Andrea

    1. Thank you Andrea for your delightful comment! Yes, play is a biggie here too, as in not doing enough of that, as well as needing to really *feel* that oneness (and aliveness) with with brush, canvas and spirit. Am glad to hear that you feel propelled and thrilled by it *as well as* confusing and frustrating at times. That is helpful and encouraging to hear! How wonderful that your heart leads you to it. Thank you for your encouragement! :) Christine

  3. the journey is such a beautiful thing. the highs and the deep lows, all of it.

    for me, the big word was PLAY. it was very hard for me to really, truly, play. various reasons. psychological stuff as well as the most prosaic guilt about wasting materials.

    one thing that helped with that was mark making. getting really simple, rather than just pushing paint around. huge bit of paper, stuck on wall, just black paint. using as much of the body in the movements. it is very freeing.

    1. Thank you Monica! Wonderful suggestions! Yes, remembering to embrace it all :) And play is an issue here as well. I tend to be too "responsible" (translated controlling. :) And OMG - yes - wasting materials - especially layers and layers of expensive paints and canvases! Yikes!

      Random mark making has been hard for me, because it doesn't *look* like anything. My mind wants to know where we're going with all this. But my first two attempts were very simple and I like them best. I find I also want to preserve what I've already done and not "ruin" it by covering it over with another layer just for fun - so there's that hesitancy to explore and experiment and play, wanting to hold on to it... Needing to trust the process. Oh yes, so many dynamics at "play" here :) Definitely need to get into the body more. I get so focused in on what I'm doing, trying not to mess it up, that I end up in my head a lot...

      I know it's all just an experiment at this point - getting used to the different methods/techniques... I like your idea of paper on the wall and just black paint to get the feel for it before I continue - letting it unfold in a relaxed way... Flora covered the play issue and body movement, but I got lost somewhere :) Thanks for the encouragement! Christine

  4. Hi, Christine! LOVE to see your painting in progress.
    Leaving our comfort zones brings up a lot of "stuff", even when going out of creative comfort zones. I've been wondering how you've been feeling with the Bloom True experience now. It takes time. It takes time to find one's way and self within a new technique. Even in art we get so pulled into one way of expressions sometimes. And we stay in that safe place. And if it feels really good, natural we don't like leaving there, do we? ;o) But I love this line about creativity here: "uncovering the layers of conditioning in order to see the Real within" That's how I found the Bloom True experience to be. The method of layering was different for me. But it became freeing to cover up what was not really "me" or what was not working, and that way making space for the real me to emerge. Play... adding pure play to my creative time was a BIG thing for me too, as I tended to be rather structured in my creative process and time. The Bloom True course reall shakes us up! I admire how you're keeping trying, keeping exploring. And you know, you could add some touches with those Craypas to your canvases. Use what sings for you. Be bold! Great to catch up with you! I've been offline a few days having some fun, just now surfacing! Happy Weekend ((HUGS))

    1. Thanks Tracy! Well this corner is actually one I *like* - that I feel *is* me - at some level anyway. I didn't want to cover it up :) So am trying to build around it... We'll see how *that* works out! :)lol Play is also a big issue here, just loosening up and letting go, not being attached to what it looks like...

      I'm *beginning* to understand the layering process and just recently had a magical moment when a couple of figures appeared. Was a moment of mystery :) But now I don't know what to do with it. We haven't gotten that far in the course yet, and I haven't watched the last 3 videos (avoidance :) - so I'm behind...

      Yes, that is true, the course has really shaken things up. So many layers! lol (pun intended!). But I see that as a good thing - something that was needed - bringing awareness to those hidden layers. Who knew it would be through creativity and art! Thanks for your encouragement to follow my Heart and do "what sings for me." Am beginning to feel like I can color outside the box more and more :)

  5. Thank you for writing about this process. Lately, my own focus has been on how ineffective I feel my words are---yet how I clutch them close, dearly. This constant awareness of the irony of life---our paradoxical clinging and letting go, all at the same time, can be exhausting, huh.

    1. I totally understand! I'm feeling that as well... You're in the middle of a big life shift right now, so that is understandable!

      This sentence got my attention: "This constant awareness of the irony of life - our paradoxical clinging and letting go, all at the same time,can be exhausting..." Yes, it is... very... causes a lot of tension in the system. The dance between heart and mind... Your words are very effective :) Thank you for sharing them here ~ ~ ~


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