I work with clients who are professional artists, adolescent musicians who compete in international competitions, etc. Presenting problems sometimes include a lack of inspiration or crippling anxiety that blocks the ability to perform or audition. My sense is that these problems are partly due to a disconnection from the individual's core soul source - as well as a loss of serving as a channel for spiritual expression.
I am inviting folks to share how they stay connected to their creative source, to their artist soul.
Hello to all those in this discussion. I've been a part of Depth Psychology Alliance for some time, but I haven't taken the time to read and comment on its discussions.
Reading some of the initial comments here, I agree that Western society doesn't support the work of artists or anyone who feels called to express what is moving within them. In fact, I would argue that this is the very disease that the collective psyche suffers from. The disconnection from one's Source - the Source of Artistic Expression - as well as the Source of one's entire life is the cause of many ailments the human race and the planet itself suffer from. Of course, we are never separate from Source, but it is our perception of feeling separate and disconnected that creates problems.
In my opinion, the spiritual journey is an awakening to this Source within and becoming vessels for the creative energy that is born from within.
I look forward to hearing any other comments/posts in this group. I see the majority of the discussion took place in 2013. Perhaps a new discussion can begin.
If anyone were interested in joining a group of professionals coming together to pool resources in order to create opportunities for spiritual practice and facilitating in others a relationship with Source, email Adriana@CreationMeditation.com. Or visit www.CreationMeditation.com
I'm very interested in that creativity/Source stuff in terms of how far an individual can go if imagination goes wild, how often imagination out of control is "bullseye". For instance, this chapter (the last one) http://www.igi-global.com/book/rethinking-machine-ethics-age-ubiqui... was 100 percent an outcome of active imagination. I have a lot of difficulties when someone familiar with it (it took twelve years for it to unfold in front of me and it would have never been properly finished without literature recommended to me by Kent Palmer (a Depth Psychology Alliance member)) asks me who I am and what I want. Also, it's difficult to me to have an opinion about something that was "delivered" to me. I can't tell whether the fact that I feel it like a foreign body increases or decreases chances for that content to be accurate.
Nice paintings! You certainly have a natural facility and gift for this media, thanks for sharing. Did I read that correctly you just started painting in 2011, wow don't stop!
Hi Les, I didn't ever see your comment...thank you. It is true that I started in 2011...I had a dream where I was painting and then had the good fortune of the encouragement of a dreamwork practitioner that I was working with who suggested that I draw the images. She continues to encourage me.
Here is another more recent painting...called The Piano...
Hello, I reconnected with my own source of artistic expression through working with my dreams. I could not have done this however, with out the support and encouragement of my dreamwork analyst who encouraged me to trying drawing or painting a difficult moment from a dream, which she did because I had another dream in the cluster we were working with in which I was painting. In that dream, I was supported by an Anima figure. I suppose in a way, my analyst became that Anima figure for me in that she supported the place of my creative expression. I would paint something from my dreamwork homework each week and then take a photo and send it to her prior to my next session. It was never about art for sale or as a profession, although I have had my work in some shows and did sell one painting. It was always about my soul work. It was very hard to let go of any of my paintings, but when they began to pile up in my studio, I did give some away and have become more willing to part with them. But they are so deeply personal, not created to please someone else, but from the very images that the dreams brought forth from my psyche.
Today, I work with clients and when the dream supports it, I will encourage them to explore and reconnect with their creative self. It is a place where we can be harshly attacked by our pathology and so it requires support and encouragement, especially if our creative sensual self was not supported as children and if it has been severely repressed.
Prior to painting my first painting in 2011 as part of my "homework" from my Archetypal Dreamwork, I had never drawn or painted. I have many images and many more inside me that want to come out. I post them up to a flickr account, but you can see some of them here on my blog: http://www.insearchofpuella.blogspot.com/p/image-gallery.html I usually write about the dream that inspired the image when I upload it, so if you follow the image gallery to my flickr account you can read some about what is behind the image. It's all based on my personal exploration/journey in Archetypal Dreamwork. I am so grateful to have discovered this in me and I am a true believer that we all carry the creative energy, which is ultimately linked to our connection to the divine creative source.
Anima with baby.JPG
Girl on Stairs.JPG
I do this in dreamtime. Dream journaling has been a tool I access off and on through the years. Aside from this I find taking awe in the stars and skies always opens my heart and soul to mystery and a desire to manifest art! I facilitate some arts groups at the mental health center I work at...one thing I see help people is when the platform for creation is very casual and people can kind of just sink into it without much pressure of having to participate a certain way...then through time those persons who have anxiety have slowly come about to claiming more space, simply through getting comfortable with themselves being around others. We start out generally with some deep breathing and often creative visualizing. The peer model of getting to hear others thoughts seems to help remind people of their own inspirational sources. For example we had a poetry workshop and used each others thoughts about color and emotion to draw from and incorporate into our own poetry-it had great results! A fellow with many co-occuring issues just facilitated the class while I was at a conference. He had crippling anxiety and in just having this to do and teach he seemed to take his mind out of worry and into planning-the class was a huge success. Hope some of this helps!
I'm not an analyst, but it seems like there are so many other mitigating factors that could cause a block. A block might not be a bad thing so to speak, if we don't try and circumvent it with trickery there is the hope of the transcendent function stepping in and taking us to a new level of perception or more importantly intend. Creating dynamic art over a long period of time is a completely different goal than using art to access the psyche, or tap our creative aspects for psychological investigation or healing. That's why I bring in the word intent. I guess one must tread lightly when working with artists.
I don't envy you this task! although a deficient or underdeveloped function sounds pretty darn reasonable, perhaps the one sided development of a function contains the focus and power of a particular artist?( although it may not be particularly healthy for his overall psyche) I don't pretend to know but it sure is interesting.
Jung set up a complicated scenario between analyst and artist and analyst artist healer. Here's an interesting quote from Liber Novus
From the Red Book Readers addition, introduction page 63.
The artist who produces such works educates the spirit of the age, and compensated the one sidedness of the present. In describing the geniuses of such symbolic works, Jung seemingly had his own activities in mind..us while he refused to regard Liber Novus as “Art” his reflections on its composition were nevertheless a critical source of his subsequent conceptions and theories of art.
The implicit question that this paper raised was whether psychology could now serve this function of educating the spirit of the age and compensating the one sidedness of the present. From this period onward, he came to conceive of the task of his psychology in precisely such a manner.
( That of an artist?)
I think a certain degree of threat towards visionaries will always come from the collective consciousness that molds images for its own political & economic agenda. This is age old. You are a wise-woman or a burnable witch, a shaman or a stoneable warlock. Happily, these collective responses are no longer legal but starving a person into submission is still out there as long as valuation is primarily based upon monitization. Not that everything put on canvas is automatically art (discussion here?), but everything is an expression of something no matter how banal, self-serving, beautiful, or troubling it might be.
For me, art is the expressive soul of the culture. A culture with a suppressed soul will eventually become a sick society constantly running around trying to numb its pain and suppress its true visionaries/artists - the carriers of the cultural flame of imagination. Quick fixes of symptoms rather than examinations in depth with the purpose of transformation becomes the norm and, sadly, this narrow view gets foisted on our children. Anyone checked to see what is happening to arts programs in schools? If they haven't been dropped, they are still "extracurricular." Remember the days you got an education to be a good citizen rather than to make a lot of money?
The frustrated artists I know have had to band together into emotional if not financial collectives in order to at least emotionally be affirmed in their work. Hang on Tim, you truly are not alone.
Thanks, Ed. Even emotional support from a distance makes a difference.
I don't worry so much for myself, who can scramble for a living and have achieved a certain attitude of survival in an unfriendly environment. I worry for the next generations who won't remember what it was like to be educated as citizens, who don't get to learn art in school, or how to be creative, or suffer from "cultural illiteracy", where the imagination is not lively enough to be able to turn art into meaning. Unlike literal illiteracy, this cannot be cured with information. It can only come from the searching and enlivened heart, fired from within! Who's left who is working on that these days?
I don't mean to be a pessimist, but the society has grown so enamored of the literal and material that spiritual gifts are now threatened species.