The foundation of my artwork is engagement in practices that cultivate inner awareness. I then create art through and as sacred ritual. The artwork created subsequently becomes the basis for further meditation.
Each of us is put here in this time and this place
to personally decide the future of humankind.
Did you think the Creator would create unnecessary
people in a time of such terrible danger?
Know that you yourself are
essential to this World.
— Chief Arvol Looking Horse of the
Lakota,Dakota and Nakota Nation,
19th Generation Keeper of the
Sacred White Buffalo Calf Pipe
This morning I took a look at my birch forest spirit art piece. I have been meditating on the spirit of the forest in the mornings. As I looked at the drawing, I found it much easier to meditate on the spirit of the forest. New depths of connection and meaning were revealed to me as I meditated on the piece.
What I understand now is that when an artwork is created through sacred ritual, as this piece was, it can become an object of meditation.
This makes the description of what I do– sacred ritual artist– come even more to life.
I have produced a set of meditation cards with photos of nature. I have loved the process. This is truly what I love to do.
When we create art through sacred ritual, it becomes the basis for meditation.
Become subtle enough
To hear a tree breathe.
Succumb to warmth in the heart
Where divine fire glows.
~ John O’Donohue
from To Bless the space Between Us
Just because it’s unseen doesn’t mean it’s unreal.
This morning I went outside at the moment of dawn for my daily nature meditation. As my feet touch the porch it is my practice to take a deep breath and to follow a series of steps to quiet the mind, which involves watching the breath. I am still fresh from the night’s sleep, which makes this easier to do than later in the day.
I felt as if I were entering a living painting. I saw tiny nuthatches in silhouette flitting from branch to lacy branch in the birches in the yard next door. The whole scene was in silhouette against the sky, which was pale and luminous. The sounds of the nuthatches were soft and sweet. A raven soared by silently. I could feel the rising energy of spring from Mother Earth responding to the widening and heightening arc of the sun. I felt this tender arising in my own body and being. I felt immersed in this tenderly arising power as a fish is immersed in the sea.
When the mind is silent, and we put our attention on nature, nature can inform us about how to be one with her. We can then learn from her about how to live rightly in the world.
To polarize or not to polarize, that is the question.
Take a comfortable, upright posture.
Become aware of your body.
Become aware that you are supported by Mother Earth.
Become aware of your breath moving through your body.
Become aware that you are breathing with Mother Earth.
Remaining aware of your breath moving through your body,
Repeat to yourself inwardly:
My body is part of me. I am not my body.
My thoughts are moving energy in the field of my awareness. I am not my thoughts.
My emotions are waves in the sea of my awareness. I am not my emotions.
I am not my family, my ancestry, my religion, or my nationality.
I release all of these identifications. I offer them to Mother Earth.
As I continue mindfully breathing, I settle into the ground of my being.
I remain There.
No matter what our religion is (or isn’t), no matter what our occupation is, no matter how virtuous or sinful we are, we are all inhabitants of Mother Earth. We have this in common. This unites us, despite our differences. Each one is beautiful even with his or her imperfections. Each of us is a unique being, within the reality of our unity as occupants of this sweet planet we call home. Becoming aware of the unity of ourselves with our Mother Earth and each other is a task of great importance.
It’s about growing a new body that heals, ages, and dies consciously.
— Alberto Villoldo