Lover and Shadow Lover

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My own Lover persona archetype (part-of-Self) is bipolar. I mean, it/She has a positive, Strength polarity as well as a deep, Shadow side.

As a Spiritual Lover, I feel happy, loved, cheerful and I love all life. I have gratitude especially for my family (including highly my pet companions), spiritual community, dear friends, and colleagues. I feel so blessed to be among them in this world. From this perspective, everyone I meet I also see the light of God shining within, and I am happy to interact with every Soul that is, in their own way, a spark of divinity, an eternal molecule in the Ocean of Love and Mercy. We are all Here to give and receive love. Life, the very life force that activates and animates all beings, IS love. What else?

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“Soul exists because God loves IT.”

(The Shariyat-Ki-SUGMAD/ Way of the Eternal, Bk. I, Paul Twitchell)

But then there’s also Shadow-Lover-Linda.  I don’t want to dwell on this aspect overmuch, but I put it forth because I know that many readers may relate to this side, too. The experience of being human— or perhaps in any physical embodiment— encompasses duality.

To know the Light we must also embrace, at times, the darkness. This part of me, my Shadow Lover, feels Alone.  Cast off or adrift from the Totality or Unity of life as ONE, from here I perceive the divisiveness of people in the world; the apparent coldness and indifference, the non-embrace, the self-absorption in others or in my own emotional experience.

I want to cry out, sometimes to cry, to give love and be received without judgment, without mental analysis or critique, without prejudice of first— or developed— impressions.

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This world can be so hard. We learn we must give unconditional love to all yet reserve the “warm,” tender, gentler expression of love for those we trust, and in this world, sadly, waves of trust can rise and fall, wax and wane like flickering shadows or fragile candle flames..

I prefer the Light. But I also embrace my Shadow-Lover-Linda. I carry her with me and try to give room for her in my heart consciousness, always.

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images are from pixabay.com

I welcome your comments and stories!

WHAT DO YOU WANT TO BE WHEN YOU GROW UP?

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When I was young, I remember asking my sister this question one day. We were in the kitchen. I was about 10 and she was 6.

“What do you want to be when you grow up?”

(pause, deep thought, and then) “I know! A Bunnyrabbit!”

What a great image! And do you know, my sister did grow up to be a bunny rabbit, in her way. She is very active and holds a lot of responsibility that helps a lot of people. Plus she has a tremendous group of very active friends, and most of all for the last several years she has been our family’s primary caregiver for our 89 year old mother who suffers from late stage Parkinsons at a nursing home near to my sister’s home.  My sister’s home has become, because so near to Mom, the nucleus for our family visits. So, she is always hopping!

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How did or might you have answered this question while you were young:

WHAT DO YOU WANT TO BE WHEN YOU GROW UP? (You may print this out and use the space below to journal in.)

 

 

Now  then, WHY (did/would you have answered this way)?

 

 

 

 

 

I have found an interesting pattern from asking this question, and then following it with: “How would you answer that same question today/ What do you want to be now when you ‘grow up’ (and, ‘Is there a difference between how you would have answered as a child and now/ Why?'”).

The way people answer this question reveals something about the dominant ARCHETYPE influences they identify with. Here’s a list of The Twelve primordial persona archetypes identified by the late Dr. Charles Bebeau of the Avalon Archetype Institute (as adapted by Debra Breazzano, MA/LPC) :

ELDER LEADER  ARTIST  TEACHER

LOVER  IDEALIST  COMMUNICATOR

WARRIOR  GOLDEN CHILD  HEALER

NURTURER  DESCENDER  MYSTIC

For example, I have found that people holding a childhood dream of becoming an Aviator or an Astronaut show when they complete the life mapping process I offer that they have a strong IDEALIST archetype orientation.  People who say they wanted to be a Superhero (a common childhood ‘fantasy’) later often show a strong WARRIOR archetypal persona. And those who wanted to become a veterinarian, for instance, tend to embody and gravitate to the HEALER mode, etcetera.

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Which of these twelve persona archetype figures do you recognize as primary personas within yourself?

People (Adults) often say the difference in how they would have answered this question as a child, and now, is that now they have “matured” to accept more “realistic” limitations. To the extent that some of these early archetypal influences may be less strong in later life (many are still present but expressing in more subdued form), some of these archetypal impulses could be suppressed or repressed. That is why it is good to renew this question and see how you FEEL about pursuing your ‘childlike’ Dream from here forward.

You can still BE that Superhero; you still ARE that airy-fairy inner Explorer/ IDEALIST. It can help to get in touch with all of your inner “parts of Self” that relate especially to the significant Themes in your life (e.g. Parent / Teacher/ Lover/ Spirituality oriented/ Artist, etcetera).  Jung would say it benefits us all to attend to and to INTEGRATE these various sub-selves, to orchestrate them, I would add, in pursuit of our Life Mission and goals.

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images are from pixabay.com

This month, October, is associated astrologically with Libra and the LOVER Archetype.  This is an opportunity to call your own LOVER forward to partner with you this month.  Get to know your LOVER persona. How does S/HE express in your life? Is S/HE in Strength mode (positive outlet) or in Shadow (if so how/ why?) What does S/HE, your Inner LOVER part-of-Self, want of you or for itself? How can you include your Inner LOVER in your outer life more fully? These are some questions you might explore.

I invite your comments and stories!

 

Your HEALER in the MIRROR

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One technique I have offered before that seems relevant this month as we close the September focus on the HEALER Archetype is a Look-in-the-Mirror technique.  Remember the Snow White fairy tale (“Who’s the Fairest…?”)  Simply imagine standing before a full sized mirror and seeing your Inner HEALER part-of-Self looking back at you, beaming a smile!

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From a wonderful blog post published by MarDrag I have been led to this Message below (from March 14, 2013 at From the Desk of MarDrag ) that I imagine your own Healer might say to You:

Your Beautiful Self

 “You are beautiful. Know this. Anyone who tells you otherwise is simply lying. You are beautiful.”  ~ Steve Maraboli

“In your own life it’s important to know how spectacular you are.”  ~ Steve Maraboli

“Did your mom ever tell you, ‘If you can’t say something nice, don’t say anything’? She was right–and talking nicely also applies when you’re talking to yourself,

even inside your head.”
~ Victoria Moran

“Letting ourselves be forgiven is one of the most difficult healings we will undertake. And one of the most fruitful.”  ~ Stephen Levine

“I am my own biggest critic. Before anyone else has criticized me, I have already criticized myself. But for the rest of my life, I am going to be with me and I don’t want to spend my life with someone who is always critical. So I am going to stop being my own critic. It’s high time that I accept all the great things about me.”  ~ C. JoyBell C.

“You can be the most beautiful person in the world and everybody sees light and rainbows when they look at you, but if you yourself don’t know it, all of that doesn’t even matter. Every second that you spend on doubting your worth, every moment that you use to criticize yourself; is a second of your life wasted, is a moment of your life thrown away. It’s not like you have forever, so don’t waste any of your seconds, don’t throw even one of your moments away.”  ~ C. JoyBell C.

“Allow yourself to enjoy each happy moment in your life.”  ~ Steve Maraboli

from The Desk of MarDrag:

While the Great Tapestry of Life is being woven with our threads and the threads of all those around us, our own smaller Tapestries are being woven to fit into that bigger picture. The threads of our individual pictures are made up of our experiences, our actions and our energy…..but the most important component that makes up those threads….are our thoughts about ourselves. Those thoughts and impressions that we hold about ourselves weave the very fibers of our threads together and then those threads weave into our pictures, and those pictures are woven into the bigger picture….and our place in the world is made.

So each and every fiber of thought is important. They are essential to the kind of picture we would like to have recorded in our own Tapestries, and then, in the Great Tapestry.

We think many thoughts about ourselves throughout the day. How many of them are good thoughts? How many are thoughts that acknowledge our wisdom and celebrate our innate beauty? How many of them are about how much we love ourselves? For what we think of ourselves is what will be woven into our threads and recorded. And our pictures will either be bright and joyful, or dark and sad.

The definition of Beautiful is this: a) having qualities that delight the senses; of a very high standard; excellent; wonderful; generally pleasing; having qualities of aesthetic beauty. And we ALL….every one of us…..have these qualities. It is just that, sometimes they get buried under stress and worry or we forget to let them shine for one reason or another. Most importantly, we forget to remind ourselves that we possess them. We inundate ourselves with frequent chatter about all that we feel is wrong about us….but we forget that we all have this innate beauty that deserves to shine. We deserve to Feel our beauty…as well as show it.

I love the quote above by C. JoyBell C. that says, “I am my own worst critic, but I do not want to spend my life with someone who is always critical, so it is high time I accept all the great things about me.” It is so profound in that…we seem to easily accept the things we think are wrong with us and criticize…but we have such a hard time accepting the wonderful, spectacular, beautiful things about ourselves and acknowledge them, Be them. And then to weave all of those fine and lovely fibers into our threads so that our Tapestries can be the pictures that we so much want them to be, that they actually truly are, if we can but see them that way. See ourselves for who we truly, and beautifully, are.

You are beautiful! You are magnificent! You have qualities and gifts that no one has exactly like you. Know this. Remind yourself of it daily. Write it down and post it somewhere you will see it every day. Because it is the truth. Believe it….and watch the beauty of your threads weave a glorious picture of a brilliant life for you. And it will be all because….YOU thought it!

Blessings!

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images are from pixabay.com

So try it, you might like it! Stand before your Inner Healer in the Mirror. What other message does S/he wish to impart to you directly? You can write it in the space below, if you wish:

I always welcome your Stories and Comments!

Saint Teresa: Archetype of the Healer

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We develop our persona archetype ‘parts of Self’ in large part from observing others who enact roles–either positively or negatively–that clearly represent that archetypal energy. For the primordial HEALER archetype, what better image is there to imprint upon in cultivating one’s own Healer persona than the iconic Mother Teresa, recently canonised as Saint Teresa?

Teresa of Calcutta’s humility and her dedication to bringing aid, love and succor to the poor and afflicted is known globally. Her Missionaries of Charity order, founded in 1990, in 2012 had 4500 sisters who vowed to serve the poor and afflicted in 133 countries.

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Teresa rejected fortune and did not seek fame, adhering closely to her vows of poverty and obedience in the Roman Catholic tradition. Wherever she could, she gave selflessly and solicited aid in any ways ethically available. A true Healer, she encouraged those she administered to not only to survive physically, when possible, but to have dignity and survive in Spirit as well.

Religion aside, St. Teresa demonstrated by her very demeanor and by her relentless caring that caste, class, race, nationality, gender, religion or any other human social constructions matter not at all when ot comes to enlivening human dignity and spiritual worth.

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images are from pixabay.com

Here are some quotes from St.. Teresa to help you connect with your own Healer nature:

If you judge people, you have no time to love them.

Be faithful in small things because it is in them that your strength lies.

Let us always meet each other with a smile, for the smile is the beginning of love.  

I have found the paradox, that if you love until it hurts, there can be no hurt, only more love.

I welcome your comments and stories!

September: Month of the HEALER

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It is time for the HEALER archetype (part of Self) to step forward and take a bow, as September and Virgo are associated energetically with the primordial Healer archetype in us all.  And Whew (HU!), I am ready for this one!

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This past few weeks I have been on somewhat of a roller coaster in my life regarding especially health matters. I don’t go to the doctor often or perhaps even often enough, but I went in for a wellness exam with a new doctor, and wham! She uncovered two daunting health challenges I have been trying to adjust to ever since. I needed a biopsy that fortunately was negative but it uncovered an autoimmune condition I will be treating for life of a personal nature. As well and nearly as challenging, my blood work shows me in the diabetic range, so I have completely shifted my diet to exclude all wheat, rice and ‘bad’ carbs.  I am still learning about both conditions, but I am extremely grateful for the wake up call!

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Sometimes waking up to the need to address physical conditions can alert us to emotional and spiritual conditions as well that need healing on a deep level. After the surgical procedures to conduct biopsies, for instance, I became acutely aware of how attached I still am to the apparent “solidity” of the Physical realm and my physical embodiment and relations. Although I have long practiced successful and illuminating spiritual contemplative techniques and am very involved in dreamwork so that I deeply value experiences beyond the physical day to day ‘reality’, nevertheless my experiences Beyond appear fragmentary and highly malleable in contrast to the sense of continuity of consciousness I experience in a physical body. So this has been a lesson for me over the past two weeks, even after learning the biopsy did not detect any immediately mortality-threatening condition.

Before I do translate into the realms beyond the Physical and leave this body-state to move on to higher planes of existence, I want to be prepared for that transition so it is smooth or even seamless then. So I have ramped up my daily contemplation practice aiming to achieve a deeper understanding of the differences between here and HERENESS, if you sense what I mean.

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pictures are from pixabay.com

This reminds me of a visionary experience I had several years ago. It is of a very deep spiritual nature, of the sort sometimes I would rather choose not to share, but as I have shared it with some others already I will share it at least partially here. A loving, beautifully transcendent Being visited me one morning in that consciousness zone between sleeping and waking. IT addressed me clearly: “So, how are things going out there?” The answer that came through me as a response to IT was: “Well, there are lots of people practicing many different religions, but most people are still afraid of death.” After a pregnant pause this Being then stated: “Next time, we won’t do Religions.”

Zowie! Welcome to a month of engagement with the Healer in You!

A Shadow of the Golden Child: Trump?

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I don’t like being too political with this venue, but it is striking to me as an observer of the current political platforming in the US presidential campaign that the candidate of D. Trump exhibits all of the distinctive traits of a Golden Child archetype presenting in “Shadow” mode. That means in a modality that inverts the most positive (what I call “Strength”) mode of this primary persona archetypal character form.

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A ‘Shadow Golden Child’ archetype strives to draw a lot of attention to himself or herself, posturing as all-knowing, all-giving or all-wise. This Persona wants power and control over others, a following. H/she is hyper-critical of any who would oppose their own platform or is outside their realm of control. Often this Persona wants to dictate to others what to do and how to do it, but tends to be fairly lazy in terms of actions of their own. They can be jealous, harping, and autocratic as leaders, with many complaints when things do not go their way or when they are not at the center stage of attention.

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Like any Shadow archetypal form, it exists as somewhat of a mirror to the positive, Strength bearing traits the same individual could be expressing if not feeling suppressed or defensive.  I have seen some persons generally exhibiting in this mode for many years gradually become less ‘shadowed,’ usually through developing strong familial ties where they come to take on a more positive, respectable, nurturing role. So let’/s not be typing individuals (Whole Self) images here. As with any shadowy traits it is helpful for the individual to gain more self-awareness and to nurture their own shadowy aspects, perhaps with therapeutic help and/or through good relations. And of course, the same person may present in Shadow mode in one  situation (e.g. publicly) and differently in another (e.g in private).

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Still, I can’t help myself but to cringe at the notion of having a relatively non-self-aware, dominantly Shadow-Golden Self figure as president of a (my) nation! (Of course, there have been many, generally in autocratic societies or under dictatorships).  I suppose we should consider the sorts of constellations of archetypal networks that cluster to form political party segments or social platform groups that give rise to social movements of any one form or another. For myself I want to support a strong Elder Leader who demonstrates strong service and leadership capabilities.

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images are from pixabay.com

I welcome your Comments and Stories!

Sum-sum-sum-sum-SUMMERTIME!

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Summertime is great for the August Golden Child. We should take advantage of the relative freedom we enjoy during the summer months (at least here in the States it is June-August).  Children have time out from their normal school routines to explore their hobbies and develop their interests; to play!  And adults tend also to feel their freedom more in Summer, taking “time out” for needed vacations during the interstice before another yearly cycle of work proceeds.

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Of course, I speak as one who has grown up in an academic world, from school as a youth to college and then teaching at a university for the past 23 years! So, to me, the years are marked in semesters, and Summertime is a welcome time of relative freedom from a ‘normal’ week to week and month to month scheduling. Still, even if your work world or home life are not so liberated during the summer months, isn’t Summertime still a blessing for most of us?  At least in the U.S., the season of summer in most of the country brings warmth and the harvest from Spring planting of corn and many other staple foods and fruits.

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So, whatever your circumstances might be right now, remember to draw upon your Golden Child nature to GET OUT and PLAY!  Celebrate your total Self, share with your Family and  dear friends, COME OUT TO PLAY!

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We all need to exercise our Inner Child sometimes. Let the golden rays of the Sun brighten your days and warm your Heart this Leo month of the Golden Child. Then later you can tell others about, “What I did on my summer vacation.”  I hope that you spread your wings through what is yet left of this Summer; that you expand your thinking and broaden your point of view by exploring new vistas of the Soul!

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images are from pixabay.com

Step Up to the Plate

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Baseball has a great tradition of “stepping up to the plate.” Metaphorically, so do we all get our sweet opportunities, our times that we are “up to bat.” This is appropriate language for the August GOLDEN CHILD archetype.  This is that ‘part of you’ that wants to Step Up for you, boldly, to take a swing and hit the ball out of the Park!

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I am thinking of the one World Series baseball game I remember from many years ago while I was a graduate student in Arizona. It was the A’s vs. another team (Dodgers?) and I remember Kirk Gibson was on the A’s team. (Feel free to correct me re. teams, if you’d like.) Anyway I do know that Kirk Gibson had a leg injury so he was in the locker room. The game score was tied; the A’s could win the pennant if they won this game.  The score on the field was I think two points over the A’s from the other team at the ninth inning, A’s up, already with two outs. Then Kirk Gibson surprises the crowd, limping out from the locker room onto the batter’s plate. He swings twice: two strikes (or he may have had some balls in but it came to two strikes.)  Then, yes of course, Kirk Gibson finds the sweet spot and swings: HOME RUN, 3 runs to home plate; the A’s WIN!

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Kirk Gibson was truly the Golden Child for the team that day.

So, what is that situation right now or coming up in your life for which you’d like to call your Golden Child from out of the locker room to take (His/Her) turn at bat? What is it that you would like for your Golden Child to say or do that would help you as a Total Self to achieve your worthy Goal? Better yet, let this Golden Child part of you speak for him/herself.  Imagine a scene in which he/she says just what needs to be said. Write it out as a statement from your Golden Child to that other or whomever you need to say that to. Write it out. Pin it up. Or better yet, SEND IT or SAY IT yourself. Even if you say it inwardly to that person or whomever you need to be assertive with, do that. You should notice how you stand up taller and feel more positive, hopeful and empowered.

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images are from pixabay.com

Try it! Here is a blank space below to write out your Golden Child proclamation or statement:

 

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I welcome your insights and stories!

Nature Nurtures!

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(Photo by Joshua Bertetta; see his blog

at  http://jbertetta.wordpress.com/)

While continuing to explore the value of the NOURISHER or Nurturer archetype in our lives this month, I am reminded that Nature is Herself a Nurturer! We are each embraced and supported by ‘Mother Nature’ constantly, from the air we breathe to the Sun’s gentle nourishment, to the water which makes up around 57-60% of our bodily substances.  We are immersed in and composed of the biochemical elements that compose the very world we live in; our bodies are vehicles created of these same elements for Soul to get about here, to grow and to thrive interactively with others composed of these same substances, nurtured by these same natural forces that convey and express our spiritual essence in this world.

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Reposted from Balaji Govindaraji’s FB page

at https://www.facebook.com/balaji.govindaraj1?fref=nf&pnref=story

(quote is from Spiritual Wisdom on DREAMS (pg. 4), by Sri Harold Klemp)

 I am grateful to have my buddy/dog Sophie to take for walks all around the region we live in and wherever we travel. All of the parks in my home town I have named “Sophie Parks.”  We especially enjoy exploring woodsy parks or trails. My heart lifts and breath expands and steadies even on these relatively short jaunts with Sophie. Nature is cleansing, healing, settling, balancing. And so, we can seek Nurture through Nature.

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Sophie

How do YOU integrate Nature as a Nourisher in your life?  How often do you allow yourself to do so with your current routines?  One thing any of us can do at any time is to step away from the troubles of the day or the situations in the family or world that may bear down on you. Take yourself and maybe bring someone you love to the Park, the Woods, the Open Space, the Trail into the Mountains, or row your kayak on the Lake, or walk the Oceanside, or camp. My sister Lee, a pastor for the United Church of Christ in Connecticut, walks along the Ocean near her home every day and posts daily photos on Facebook:

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Photos by Rev. Lee Ireland (my sister in Connecticut) from her FB page 

https://www.facebook.com/lee.ireland.1048https:

//www.facebook.com/lee.ireland.1048

Nature resonates with your own inner nature and allows your Inner NOURISHER to breathe and to calm you and to direct your attention to that which is permanent rather than transitory.

I welcome your insights and stories!

Call for A Change of Heart!

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Well folks I did it again, making the same mistake I made last year in assigning the GOLDEN CHILD, a Leo Archetype (yes) to July, when actually it is the prototypical archetype for the August Leo persona. I guess that’s how strong the charismatic GOLDEN CHILD’s voice (in me, with alot of Leo in my astrological chart) can be!  I will return to the Golden Child posts in August.

JULY holds the primary archetypal energy of the Cancerian NOURISHER. And how apt this feels to me today after the horrendous (again), senseless attack on human life and decency in Nice, France. I feel that as a blogger, I have an obligation to take note of such enormous ripples in the fabric of what could be called righteous or civil behavior. If we begin to ignore such atrocities, if we begin to blur our feelings of outrage and sorrow about them, then we risk becoming numbed and ‘desensitized’ to the evil–if anything can be called that, this is it!–so rampant across the world today.

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THE NOURISHER (or, Nurturer) in me calls out for a CHANGE OF HEART! It makes no sense to me that those labelled ‘terrorists’ or ‘Jihadists’ perhaps in their own terminology would conduct such a murderous campaign against innocent peoples–and yes, they ARE that!–simply going about their business or celebrating their liberty and being alive. Are these perpetrators so conditioned by ancient ideas of ‘a life for a life,’ for instance, that they have forgotten to celebrate their OWN lives and to be thankful for the diversity and community available today? I feel that what is needed in the world, especially in those tormented, however wrongly in their own understanding, by feelings of religious suppression or their desire to be righteous against the grain of normal human values and decency, is A CHANGE OF HEART.

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Let’s call out for A CHANGE OF HEART from misery and feelings of disempowerment or a desire to control to an appreciation of all that Divinity has BLESSED us with in this brave world, here and now.  An Attitude of Gratitude and Forgiveness can go a long way towards effecting a Change of Heart, whether in the individual or in the world at large.

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images are from pixabay.com

 

Love, not Power, guys.  Life, not Death, is what ultimately matters for the sake of learning and loving and going forward to greater awareness even of our own divinity or inviolable existence. Bon Vivant a Tout!

I welcome your Comments and Insights!

Advice from your Golden Child

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A major advantage and goal of getting to know your archetypal ‘parts of Self’ is that you can call upon various of your archetypal sub-selves to draw upon their specific perspectives and strengths of character. After all, these archetypal energies are facets of your Self.  Your Golden Child is that charismatic part of yourself that is always willing to step forward to help you express yourself boldly when the situation calls for that. But Golden Child is one of those archetypal personae that many of us—not Leos, for instance—tend to suppress or bury.

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Can you think of a current situation in your life that could benefit from your stepping forth to make bold proclamations? Well then, even if you may not be ready to let your Golden Child shine forth fully on your life stage, I invite you to a technique that can help you allow your Golden Child to give you (or others) the advice It is ready to proclaim.

This is an active imagination technique such as Carl Jung and James Hillman have used to encounter  archetypal personae in their own unconscious domains.

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Set some alone time to spend a half an hour or so in a quiet space where you will not be interrupted. With eyes closed or open (your choice), imagine! Let yourself sink into a part of yourself where your Golden Child lives. Ask him or her about a situation in your life where you could use strong advice. Have a conversation or just listen/attend to what this bold facet of yourself wants to say to you about the situation. You could also imagine someone else there with you, someone you wish you could be bold enough to say something to that you really wish you could say.

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images are from pixabay.com

When you complete your active imagination session, I encourage you to journal about it. Either write out the dialogue as you remember it or at least record the bold statements that your Golden Child proclaimed as messages from your unconscious. By the way, what is she or he like, that part of you that gets to say everything you’d like to be able to express? How might you allow that part of yourself to have more of a voice in your life? Maybe in that situation you were contemplating? Write ONE STATEMENT that boldly proclaims what you need to say. You can print this out and write your statement below if you wish to:

 

I welcome your Comments and Stories!

 

You Are a Golden Child!

 

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Leo is the astrological sign of the Golden Child persona archetype according to Dr. Charles Bebeau, the archetypal psychologist who founded the former Avalon Archetype Institute. For the month of August I will focus on exploring the Golden Child archetype with you. I invite you to participate by practicing some of the self discovery tools I will be sharing here.

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The Golden Child is associated with positive traits of being charismatic, generous, and outgoing, with a flair for trailblazing and talented performance. Shadow traits could include a  potential for being overbearing, controlling, vain or or self absorbed. Everyone has a bit of the Golden Child in our unconscious makeup; it is a dominant character mode for some and might show up in a more inhibited or in a situational manner for others.

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When does your Golden Child persona express itself (or would if you’d but let it)?  When are you most in your “on stage” best? Do you feel yourself ‘slipping into’ a more extroversive role when you feel most called upon to do so, or is this a more typical, normal public persona for you? Many other archetypal personas can benefit from aligning or combining with this ‘mask’. As a professor for instance I have a dominant Teacher archetype mode, and before a large class of students sometimes my Golden Child shows up to buttress my Teacher role. Then I find myself able to be more humorous and outgoing than is characteristic of my core, rather introspective nature. It’s almost as if I step aside in a large group environment to give ground to this talented sub-Self of the Golden Child persona. I am so grateful it is there!

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images are from pixabay.com

I invite your own insights and stories!

 

 

Communication Matters!

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As the month of the archetypal Communicator winds down, I realize how absolutely central good, reciprocal communication is in life. What else is there, really? All of our lives we are in communication with others and internally. How well we communicate matters. How well we express and affirm who we are to one another, how well we listen, how much grace we give to one another… Matters.

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Matters of communication have consequences. From the largest to the most minute situation or transaction, how well we communicate depends upon and reveals qualities of our deepest nature. If we do not know ourselves deeply enough, as the spiritual beings that we are at our very core, we cannot communicate who we are to another except incompletely. If we are self-absorbed, do we really know who we are?  Withholding of honest, humble communication is a mode of violence and accompanies violence toward ourselves and others.

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I have a friend who has been like a sister to me for many years. Yet, she has become locked up in  anger and frustration toward life, so filled with what she regards as righteous opinions that she has forgotten what matters; she chooses not to communicate positively with those who do not hold her same political views. She isolates herself, which deepens her turmoil.

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Life itself I have come to realize requires healthy communication. Consciousness communicates with other aspects of itself through form, voice, action, and via silences. The cosmos itself is a macro-communication matrix that organizes micro-cosmic codes; a grand message constantly unfolding in myriad dimensions; what else?

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images are from pixabay.com

I welcome your Comments and Stories!

Believe in Yourself to Express Fully Who You Are

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Don’t allow anyone who does not know who you are most completely to affect who you know yourself to be. I write this in the month of the Communicator archetype and, for me, after having just watched the brilliant Broadway stage play about the life of Carol King, Beautiful.

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There are people who may think they know or understand you but who really cannot because they lack a complete picture or do not have a full or genuine interest in your life’s work. But you do. Stand true to who you know yourself to be and for the work that you have done and will do, for your purpose and mission in this world.

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Sometimes in fact it is those who are closest to you–family, close friends, even a partner–who think they know you best (and who  you believe understands you well) whose limited perceptions can hurt you most deeply or effectively, if you allow that. They are not to be blamed; they do not have a  full understanding because they have only seen a small portion of your work or service. They have known you for a long time perhaps though only see you on occasional visits, and their lives are much different than yours in terms of expertise and priorities. In the end…sigh…all you can do is love them and hold your own understanding close to your heart and shielded.

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In Beautiful, we see a brilliant young lady whose mother tries at first to persuade her to teach rather than to compose and sing. She begins a successful career in the pop music field, allowing a man whom she later marries to write the lyrics to music she writes. All well and good but it takes divorcing him after his philandering and unstable influence for her to ultimately return to the deeper reservoirs of her own talent, her own musical sensibility and brilliance, her own heart; and to her own voice. Once she writes her own lyrics again, she transforms not only her own self expression but the world, with songs and compositions unheard of in their purity and strength.

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images are from pixabay.com

 

Our Communicator speaks from the deep Heart Center, from Soul. Whether or not another person in your life has found that center, you have the responsibility and indeed the obligation to let your heart light shine as brightly and as passionately as you can.

 

Do you hear me on this one? Listen to Your Self !

What Sort of Communicator Are You?

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We are exploring the COMMUNICATOR Archetype for this month of June. Who are YOU as a Communicator? What archetypal Communicator character Strengths do you rely on? How well have you drawn upon and integrated these Strengths? On the other hand, have you developed any challenges or inhibitions in relation to your COMMUNICATOR potentials?

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Consider a specific situation that leads you to draw upon your best COMMUNICATOR abilities. Maybe it is a relationship matter that requires you to be a good Listener or to express yourself very clearly. Or maybe it is an opportunity or a responsibility to impress someone or a group of clients at your workplace.  Or maybe you are anticipating a major life transition? Listening to your SELF and communicating well with others can help you to proceed forward in a conscious, heartful manner.

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images are from pixabay.com

Below, I invite you to journal about your own COMMUNICATOR qualities in relation to one or more situations.

SITUATION                        Communication needs/ Strengths

(E.g. job interview)         (Use language of the field, show team focus and leadership strengths, good eye contact)

 

 

 

 

PRACTICE (Write or actively imagine a hypothetical communication expression by you in the situation you are concerned about, OR write out or actively imagine a conversation or dialogue you can anticipate. INVITE AND ALLOW your internal COMMUNICATOR Persona to guide you in what to say or how to respond.

 

 

******   ******

I invite Comments about your use of this self-discovery technique or about the role or special qualities of the COMMUNICATOR Persona in your life.

“Let’s Meet on the Inner”: An Internal Dialogue Practice

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For this month of the archetypal Communicator, I offer you a method for working with a challenging relationship conflict in a positive, constructive way.

For a difficult situation involving communication challenges, you can “go Within” to engage with the person(s) involved, or alternately, you can meet with an Inner Guide and have a conversation with him or her about a snaggly situation. This is a form of what Carl Jung would call Active Imagination.

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If you are having troubles communicating with someone because of a personality conflict or in relation to a sticky situation, you can set some quiet, private time aside. Go into a light contemplative/ meditative ‘zone’ (eyes closed in a semi-darkened space or in a natural setting) and imagine that the person or persons you’ve been having trouble with are present in a conference room (or create your own internal environment that is appropriate for your visit).

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Start a conversation. It can be very simple and does not have to be directly about the challenging situation you are facing. What is important is that this is a positive exchange. Allow the internal conversation with your ‘alter’ to proceed naturally, as if you and this person or persons are meeting Soul-to-Soul with a shared intention to move beyond your snaggles and to arrive at a positive, win-win solution.

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As an example to demonstrate the approach, around 15 years ago I faced a difficult situation with a workplace colleague. Coming from polarized theoretical approaches for teaching, the impasse between us reached the point—very uncomfortable for me—that we would avoid contact with each other altogether.

Then one morning I woke from a lucid dream encounter with this person (let’s call him Carl). In this dream encounter, I simply met Carl in passing. I beamed a positive smile, made Soul-to-Soul eye contact, and said, “Hello Carl!”. That was it. But it had the most amazing effect! That very morning at work, I was in the mail room when Carl walked in. Seeing we were ‘stuck’ alone in the mail room together, we made eye contact for the first time in several months.

               “Hello Carl!” I beamed, smiling.

               “Hi Linda,” Carl replied also with a smile.

That was our entire conversation, just as in the morning’s lucid dream. Somehow, it set into motion an immediate, significant thawing of our relationship. We no longer avoided one another, and in fact shortly after this encounter, Carl applied for and received an out-of-state position that would allow him to advance in his career. (I had put the job notification in his mailbox!) Within 3-4 months, Carl left, with the two of us in a much improved relation, as I even organized, as department Chair, a farewell party for Carl.

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free images are from pixabay.com

I invite you to try this technique for yourself. Imagine an internal conversation with someone you seek to have a better relationship with. You are not trying to change this person, but you are simply allowing a Soul-to-Soul encounter that may be difficult to engage in “out Here.”

I welcome your Comments and Stories.

(P.S. I will be on a road trip for the next month, so blog posts may be on a less than regular schedule.)

Your Artist’s Day at the Roundtable

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We have been using Arthur’s Roundtable as a metaphor for integrating your own archetypal persona Ensemble Cast.  These parts of Self—which I am presenting as prototypically twelve primordial archetype forms based on Dr. Charles and Nin Bebeau of the former Avalon Archetype Institute—each have a vital role to play in connection with your own recurring Life Themes and your life’s Mission.

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The ARTIST as an archetypal Ally is a very important persona, regardless of your career.  Let’s imagine it is your ARTIST’s DAY at Arthur’s Roundtable. Invite your Inner Artist to step up to be celebrated. Allow your Artist to express herself or himself to the rest of the Twelve.

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Does your Artist have a name? What is that name, to you? Ask your Artist to speak about or to otherwise express (draw? create  a mandala or a collage? write a poem about?) her/his current interests, goals and concerns about your life overall as a Total Self System. Dialogue in your journal, if you like, with your Artist persona.

As an example of how you along with the rest of your Ensemble Cast might engage your Artist in dialogue, I’ll demonstrate a brief Roundtable conversation with my own Artist Ally:

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L: Welcome, Artist! We celebrate you this evening at the Roundtable. Is there a name by which you might like to be called?

Artist: Sedona.

Communicator: Oh! Well that’s interesting; why Sedona?

Artist: Remember the Sedona Life Magazine? That was me who put pictures from that magazine on your wall the year before we moved to Arizona. I helped us all to ENVISION the Beauty of Arizona to help us to make that Big Move.

Mystic: So, Sedona, why do you remind us of this now?

Artist: We are ready to envision the next stage of our Journey. 

L: Maybe we should call you Chautauqua, then?

Artist: No, I am still your Sedona.  What did Sedona mean to you?

L:  It was an Ideal, a deep Inspiration,  a Goal to arrive at that at the time represented a major undertaking. Thank you for helping us to Ground our Vision in that way.

Idealist: We need that again, don’t we?

Mystic: You mean, more of an inspiration?

Idealist: Yes. Lately Linda, we know you have become a little worried about your overall retirement picture. I feel it in my Shadow nature. You are losing some of your self-confidence about what we will be doing in retirement.

L: Yes, I feel like I have pinned a lot on something that might not manifest as we most wish it would.

Mystic: But whatever comes about, we will forge and continue with our spiritual quest; of that you can be sure.

Artist: It will be a timespace full of Beauty. Hozhoni, as a Navajo might say!

L: I need your help in this, Sedona.

Artist: I will be there with you; I am always.

L: What can I do to reinforce this positive Vision of our future fulfillment in connection with our coming Big Move?

Artist: Take many pictures while enjoying your upcoming, interim road trip Home—Home to where we will be living next. Enlarge and maybe frame some of these: the Lake, the Hills, Boats, smiling People; your Sister, Mother, and special places that catch your attention.

L: Thanks!

******   ******

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images from pixabay.com

So, now it’s Your Turn! Enjoy

I welcome your Comments and Stories!

“So She had Outdanced Thought”…Go with the Flow

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I was listening on National Public Radio this past week to a discussion about Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi’s TED talk theme of “Flow” (http://www.npr.org/2015/04/17/399806632/what-makes-a-life-worth-living).  The neuropsychologist explains that the brain can process no more than something like 120 bits of information at a time. The more closely we focus on some activity, the less we are aware of many surrounding conditions or facts that might otherwise vie for our attention. When we are working with great concentration on something we dearly love—like a work of art, giving a performance onstage, writing, or competing at a sports event, we enter “the Flow,” effectively transcending space and time altogether while absorbed in this all-consuming activity in the Now.

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The NPR journalist associated this transcendent experience of “flow” with Abraham Maslow’s notion of a “peak experience.”  I know this concept quite well both as a writer and from when I was a competitive Fencer. I recall quite well one fencing tournament in Tucson, Arizona. I was so focused on being centered and fencing from that Center at that particular tournament that when I fenced, I won every bout 4-0 (and the tournament) and yet I hardly even knew what had just occurred when I stepped off from the fencing strip. The actions themselves had become almost “automatic”: advance/ retreat, attack / parry-riposte, etcetera were not consciously engaged but happened spontaneously from that Center. …”What a rush!” one might say, when this happens!

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Poetry is a medium that brings out my own artistic nature or my ARTIST Archetype Ally, that part of Self that I gratefully share consciousness with to better appreciate form, color, balance, and Nature.  One of my favorite poems from my favorite poet, W. B.Yeats, expresses poignantly the transcendent Flow of the Artist; in this case, in his dream of three Figures: “A Buddha, hands at rest / Hand lifted up that blessed; A Sphinx, head erect, in triumph of intellect… ; and “right between these two a girl that danced”.  Here are the relevant verses from part II of “The Double Vision of Michael Robartes” (from http://www.yeatsvision.com/Doublevision.html ) :

II
On the grey rock of Cashel I suddenly saw
A Sphinx with woman breast and lion paw,
A Buddha, hand at rest,
Hand lifted up that blest;And right between these two a girl at play
That, it may be, had danced her life away,
For now being dead it seemed
That she of dancing dreamed.Although I saw it all in the mind’s eye
There can be nothing solider till I die;
I saw it by the moon’s light
Now at its fifteenth night.One lashed her tail; her eyes lit by the moon
Gazed upon all things known, all things unknown,
In triumph of intellect
With motionless head erect.

That other’s moonlit eyeballs never moved,
Being fixed on all things loved, all things unloved,
Yet little peace he had,
For all that love are sad.

O little did they care who danced between,
And little she by whom her dance was seen
So she had outdanced thought.
Body perfection brought,

For what but eye and ear silence the mind
With the minute particulars of mankind?
Mind moved yet seemed to stop
As ’twere a spinning-top.

In contemplation had those three so wrought
Upon a moment, and so stretched it out
That they, time overthrown,
Were dead yet flesh and bone.

III

I knew that I had seen, had seen at last
That girl my unremembering nights hold fast
Or else my dreams that fly
If I should rub an eye,

And yet in flying fling into my meat
A crazy juice that makes the pulses beat
As though I had been undone
By Homer’s Paragon

So what about you? When are you most in the Flow? How can you use this experience to channel your inner Artist and to accomplish your deepest ambitions?

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images from pixabay.com

The Artist’s Passion

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Why have so many well-known artists been plagued with depression or addictive personalities? Sometimes the strain of living with artistic sensibilities in a world that may seem better suited to pragmatism or materialistic reality can lead one to feel isolated, an outsider, never “fitting in” with normative expectations. Some might say if this is not a necessary outlook for an artist, it may at least seem helpful for the artist to be true to her/his own unique viewpoint.

Painters, writers, musicians, dancers, actors and others who center their lives around their Art contribute so much of beauty and insight so that others might grow from  absorbing the Artist’s perspective.  They fulfill an immeasurably valuable human service in this capacity.

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Each of us also contains within our Psyche our own ARTIST persona Archetype, which is informed by the history of Artists we have known.  As such, the ‘melancholy’ aspect we might culturally attribute to Artists in general can also affect the development or inhibition of our own artistic nature.

As all Archetypes have both positive, light-bearing or Strength facets as well as potential Shadow forms, let’s celebrate the ARTIST in others and in ourselves this month by embracing the totality of the ARTIST Archetype.

Think of one artist whose art (whether by painting, sculpture, music, dance, photography, writing or other forms) has been influential to your thinking or to your appreciation of life. What about this person allowed his or her art to reach such a heightened level as to become shared worldwide (if it is)? For example, on Sunday I mentioned Vincent Van Gogh, whose life certainly exemplifies the dynamic tension of “an artist”; his outlook helps us all to perceive life beneath the mere surfaces, striking at the vibrancy and passion of perception.  Whatever other factors may have been influential, such as possibly lead in the paint he used, Vincent ultimately sacrificed his very life for the sake of his artistic passions.

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A better ending envisioning for an Artist’s solitary life might allow for his or her sensibilities to be embraced rather than marginalized. Integrating one’s artistic tendencies with other archetypal outlooks may also be beneficial.  Be that as it may, for now let’s just accept and appreciate the artists in our own lives, in our Culture, in our Selves!

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images are from pixabay.com

I invite YOUR Comments and Stories!

Your Artistic Vein

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May is associated with the Archetype of the ARTIST. We each have artistic tendencies, whether or not we have developed these talents for our profession or as hobbies.

Your Inner Artist brings a sensitivity to form, color, texture, vibrancy, and style.  S/he helps you to appreciate symmetry, balance, and holistic design.

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Certain sorts of life experience may evoke or stimulate your ARTIST Archetype Ally. For me, spending time at an art museum or strolling through an art show allows my ARTIST to surface, center stage.

I love the sense of heightened appreciation of light, beauty, and form that infuses my senses when I step out from a museum after having absorbed myself in the artworks inside.

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When I was first in college in Buffalo, New York, the Albright-Knox art museum was just across the street from the campus.  For most of the time I was there, the museum hosted an Impressionists Hall that included one particular original painting by Vincent Van Gogh called “The Old Mill.” I had read Vincent, by Joost Poldermans, and I was (still am) fascinated by Van Gogh’s brilliant art. I became mesmerized by this one painting every time I visited the exhibit. There was a bench opposite from the painting, and I would sit literally for hours in front of this dynamic, folksy tableau of color, texture, and human passion. I would journal about the painting or about life. I would watch the museum patrons as they approached, viewed, and left or stood to discuss Vincent’s work.

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images from pixabay.com

(Notice in this one how the clouds are reaching forward like a hand over the landscape!)

I felt that the color of the rivulet flowing across the scene in “The Old Mill” painting mirrored Vincent’s own eyes of blue, placing his presence as centrally positioned, eternally embedded in the Southern French landscape portrayed.

This week, I invite you to give yourself an Artist’s Date, such as Julia Cameron describes in her excellent book, The Artist’s Way. This is  a time out, a chance for you to do something differently and pay attention to your environment. Maybe it is taking a walk along a lake, or a different road home. Or, simply engage in art in some form for its own sake. In fact, I encourage you to read and engage with the exercises in The Artist’s Way all this month.

I welcome your Comments and invite your Stories about your relationship with your own ARTIST Ally.