Last week, Wednesday, I am pulling books from my studio shelves. Preparation to lead a writing workshop on Friday.
I pull down Living Color by Natalie Goldberg. I have had this book since 1997. Have read it through at least four times, and thumbed through it many times more. Inspiration, from writer to writer, from artist to artist.
I open the book and a piece of folded, loose leaf paper falls to the floor. I pick it up, open the page. In pencil, all caps, printed across the top margin, underlined, in my hand—what I learned from Natalie’s book ‘Living Color’.
Mystified. I don’t recall writing this. I did, obviously. After the first reading of Nat’s book, or the fourth. I sit down and read.
Here is Natalie’s wisdom distilled through mine, writer to writer, artist to artist:
‘Finish every piece, even when I think I just doomed it with my last marks or words. Take off from there into a different relationship with the drawing or the writing.
Nothing I ever create will hold that same intensity of joy I feel while I am creating it. The joy is inside me.
Trust and act on how I feel (my artist’s instinct).
Slow down and look.
If I really know a thing, it is there in my work whether I can see it or not.
(In honour of Valentine’s Day on February 14th, I’m reposting a lesson I learned about love.)
Choose love. It should be something that comes naturally. For me, not always, although I am getting better at this. Somewhere in my growing up, I unlearned choosing love. The words that follow tell how I am moving back to choosing through love and for love. Let me tell you a story from 2013……
I have been working online and by phone with Dee Wallace and Jarrad Hewett for the last five months. I am part of a large group, more than one hundred of us, international. We are doing ‘Let the Shift Hit the Fan II’, a ten month program of inner work, energy and intuition. We are learning to hear our own voices above the clamour of those around us. Learning to trust what we feel and know for ourselves. Learning to make choices and act on those choices. Learning to create our lives consciously. We are returning, each of us, to our true selves. This is what has sparked my constant mantra of ‘know, trust, choose, create’.
Dee’s channel is telling us we need to learn to develop our focus on feeling love. They give us what we call ‘the Red Dot Exercise’. This exercise seems a bit silly at first, has us laughing about it, that we are loving a red dot on a piece of paper. Then we realize it is working.
This is the Red Dot Exercise we have been given:
‘Make a red dot on a piece of paper.
Drop into your heart center, open your heart, and find a strong experience of love. Feel the joy and unconditional love of that moment. Allow that feeling to expand.
Now for thirty seconds, five times a day, for two weeks, practice sending that love to your red dot. Become one with it. Practice detachment from sending and being this experience of love. Just feel love for your red dot. Leave the thinking and judging aside. Just feel.
For the next two weeks, do the same, knowing that the red dot is simply self-love. EXPECT NOTHING. It is just the practice of sending and BEING the love.
For the final two weeks, you can choose that the dot represents something: money/health, etc., and send love. All feeling, no thinking. SEE IF YOU CAN STILL DO THE EXERCISE WITH NO ATTACHMENT. You are simply BEING Love around whatever subject you choose. You are realizing that the state of love IS that which you have chosen.
It is suggested that this become a way of life. This is not a temporary exercise.
Feel this shift in your heart and your gut. YOU ARE the energy that is the Love.’
I am midpoint in this Shift work and I am seeing and feeling the changes I am creating for myself. Dee, Jarrad, and their channels have my trust.
I find a pad of yellow sticky notes and a red pencil. I make my bright red dot and stick it eye height on the wall above my studio desk. I cannot miss it. I will remember to do this five times a day, no problem, since I am in and out of my studio frequently.