On Art and Depth.

Last Wednesday I had the pleasure of meeting the spiritual teacher Thomas Hubl in my Integral Awaking Group here in San Francisco. I learned so much and felt a strong connection to his teachings and wanted to share a bit with you all.  In the video below, I love what Thomas says about opening up to not knowing what comes next in life. Stop planning so much and let your self change and learn again, and go really deep into whatever you do in your life, including your art.

For the last year and a half I have been learning about finding my Soul Purpose and what I am supposed to be doing with my life. It has been a really interesting time in trying to figure out why I am here. I do have some clues, I know am supposed to be doing something with my art, but what? How deep can I go? How do I get there? I wonder how artists go really, really deep with their art. How do they make it substantial enough to provide meaning for others. How do you create connection beyond just making lovely drawings?

In order to go deep you need to access all the dark things in your life. This is really difficult in a society that we try to avoid facing pain and heaviness at all costs. You need to be open to everything. You can't allow yourself to be numb anymore. This is a very scary thought. Numbness is protection.

So I have a few questions for you... What does it mean to you to be an artist or creative person? Do you feel you connect to a higher source when you make your art? Would you allow yourself to make a positive change in the world if you could using your art? Are you afraid of making a difference? I know I am...what a responsibility that would be. Would I be strong and wise enough to handle this new sense of self? These are questions that keep rolling around in my head.

I always loved creating...so much at times throughout my life I couldn't relax enough and actually do the work(damn, you perfectionism). But now that is all changing and I am creating more work than I have ever done. I still wonder, on a spiritual level, if a person can possibly stop distractions, focus, and just do the work, would somehow the universe will find some way to take care of them?  (Of course, you would have to work very hard but the energy you create would make it all worth it.)

How do you make your creative purpose a priority in your life? I've asked this to many teachers and the simple yet not so simple answer is that you just have to do it. There is no easy way. You need to create new habits and stick to them.(Which is still something I struggle with daily). Next, I think you have to find communities to share your work with and create massive amounts of positive energy amongst yourselves.

 You know, we are so lucky, we are living in an incredible time where your community can truly be the world. We just need to open up our eyes to see it. Then we can say we are truly awake, and in that awakeness is where the "magic" seems to happen. This world would be a pretty amazing place to be, don't you think?

A little me time...

This weekend I am going to the woods to have a few words with nature. It will be my first vision quest and I hope that I learn a lot about myself and the world. It will be quiet, peaceful and cleansing. Hopefully it will bring me to a better place with myself and my artwork and I will come out even stronger. It will be nice to get away by myself and just rest and stop my brain from spinning.

I came upon this lovely photo by Matthew Koudys on Design for Mankind today. Is it wonderful when the perfect thing just shows up?

I'm Not An Expert But...on Spirtuality Vs the Brain Spin

I figure if I could just calm my damn brain down I could rule the world. Or at least get my illustration business going a little more clearly. All I need to to is learn to meditate and breath,  right? That's what I keep hearing anyway.

  thank you Smithsonian Magazine

Here is my new daily ritual:

1. Make some herb tea. It is a nice thank you to your body after your meditation.
2. Light a candle. It always helps me get into the "zone"
3. Sit on couch legs crossed indian style, or what ever is most comfortable to you.
4. Sit up a bit straighter than usual.
5.Hands in lap.
6. Close your eyes.
7. Take some deep breaths
8. Try to knock away thoughts as they arise, don't worry to much about this though.
9. Breath some more, deeply.
10. Do this for about 5 to 10 minutes, or more if you wish. Set a timer, so you aren't always looking at a clock.
11. Try to do this daily
12. See what happens to your sense of calm.

I'm trying to do this because of my crazy lack of concentration and swells of anxiety I sometimes get. Here is a sketch I did this morning of how I've been feeling.

Basically I need to figure out so much stuff, with running my own business and creating a whole world of illustrations. It has been a little over two weeks since I have started this freelance thing and it is like creating a whole new world for myself.

I'm sure there are a lot of you in my same situation. How did you do it? Any secrets to share?