The Art of Soulful Creativity
It’s my desire here to put artistry, creativity and soul in contrast to the values of our culture so as to inspire a more conscious evolutionary pulse in each of us. To be a soulful person is to value, even treasure what is internal, what is unique and valuable within ourselves and the whole of creation. The more we awaken the potentialities within our unique personal evolution, the more we can courageously engage our collective creativity and activate its soulful unfolding. This is the foundation of a whole new way of being/doing for our global community that we’re only beginning to grasp.
As I walk through the library of soul, there seems to be a lot of diversity in how we see and understand what soul is. What if we would describe soul as the link to the ultimate meaning and mystery of Life; the blueprint within every living thing that transmits what it is and what it can become. At this level, it’s understood to be the essential presence of living energy that shines through everything. It’s the individual well that’s connected to the infinite Source of all well-springs that bubble up here, there and everywhere. How does this resonate with you? Are you sensing a connection?
Soul invites us beyond the rational, linear, calculative mind into the mysteries of Life. It invites us to ‘Be Here Now’ with what is beyond thought, words and deeds. It’s a simple presence that’s aware of each breath, each observation, each wisp of wind, each drop of rain, each song of a bird and each taste of the smallest things. Soul is of Essence. It’s a much higher authority than our ego with its opinions, fears and judgements. Soul stimulates the innate and essential creativity in each of us as well as in the roots, rocks, animals, birds, bees, flowers and trees. Soul is the artist of creativity and mystery.
Julia Cameron, author of The Artist’s Way says: “For most people, creativity is a serious business.They forget the telling phrase ‘the play of ideas’ and think they need to knuckle down and work more. Often, the reverse is true. They need to play more.” This points to the art of soulful creativity which is always lighthearted and playful. If you don’t believe this, engage a child before they’ve been culturally conditioned, age six or less, and create with them through imagination using crayon, clay, paint, paper or story. Their creativity is playful, spontaneous, soulful and fun without thinking about it. It’s natural.
Once we’re culturally conditioned however, creativity is almost always a leap of faith. Without knowing it, we’re faced with the task of accessing our inner artist through the calculative mind which processes everything through linear thought, words and deeds. As mentioned above, creativity, art and mystery are only accessed through soul which by this time has been relegated to the lost realm of the unconscious. To claim ‘we’re not creative’ is to lose our souls. To what end: what gain is there to lose our creativity?
Once we take the mystery and surprise out of life, the heart and soul of creativity, we look for it in certainty, rules, regulations and externalized gratification. Rather than seeing creativity in darkness and silence, like life itself, we chase the glitz, glitter and noise of predictability. No wonder so many of us find alienation and negativity, the enemies of creativity, on the soulless byways of business as usual. No wonder we’re addicted to certainty rather than to the courage of letting go that creativity requires. The new insights we’re looking for begin in wonder and mystery, in soulful creativity.
This creativity usually involves ‘aha’ moments where we perceive the interconnectivity between seemingly unrelated ideas to reveal something new. Soul is the linkage that draws these disparate concepts together thus creating the necessary guidance through mystery into wonder, wisdom and new life. Reflect on a time in your ‘not knowing‘ when you came to know something new and unique. Ponder the reflections that created new possibilities and potentialities. Do you now recognized this blueprint that’s within? If so, you can now create a new reality. You can now cultivate the Art of Soulful Creativity.
- Sit quietly in the darkness and silence of the night. Listen to the silence behind the silence. What mysteries are here that you’d like to explore? Why would you want to? What have you created that you’d like to enhance and expand upon? Follow this line of questions and see what’s revealed to you. . . .
- Reflect on the thought that you’re not creative. Include in this reflection the times when you were creative no matter how far back you have to go. When did this shift take place and why? Give yourself the choice and the courage to reclaim your original blueprint, your soulful creativity. Begin slowly and gently to realign with this gift. . . .
- If you want help, you might want to engage Julia Cameron’s ground breaking book The Artist’s Way which is a course in discovering and recovering your creative self.
- Allow yourself the gift of mystery. Spend time in nature. Take walks to simply enjoy the outdoors. Soak in the tub just because. Light a candle. Burn some incense. Close your eyes throughout the day when it’s safe to do so. Embrace the silence. Discover beauty, surprise and delight in the smallest things. Relax, realign and find the new meaning of soul in all things, especially in you. The soulful art of creativity begins here.