Have you ever found yourself standing in front of a creation wondering what compelled its creator to birth it? I have, many a time. Whether it is a Monet or a painting made by a child, my thoughts linger to feelings that the creator might have connected with, the life experience he/she was having at the time.
I was once asked a thought-provoking question about a canvas I painted. It had bright blooms, carefree strokes and my favorite gold interspersed in between. “What were you thinking as you painted this canvas?” asked a dear friend.
The question brought my mind, that usually travels at a mile a minute, to a screeching halt. This was going to take deep reflection. Prior to that, I let the creative juices flow without fully understanding what my heart was trying to say, without grasping the process. Perhaps I wasn’t entirely in touch with my emotions. It is only now, over a year after this question was posed to me, that I have found the mental space to understand the question and begin to put together the intricacies involved in creating.
I know that for me I have to be called to create. I do show up though, even when inspiration is nowhere in sight. Sometimes this means merely sketching a few lines or playing with clay, even though nothing is born.
That day when I painted the canvas, I remember I had just strolled through my garden. The infinite clusters of roses welcomed me as they do every morning as I carefully sip my morning tea with intention, fully aware of the present moment. The textures of various foliage, the hues of flowers, the olive tree branches, the moss creeping on rocks, the sweet calls of the birds, the fountains, all stimulated my senses. God’s creations made me smile from within as they do every morning. What was special about that particular day that made me pick up a paintbrush?
Perhaps, it was the space I had deliberately carved out that day to “just be”. There wasn’t an agenda of any sort. My entire day was a blank canvas. My breaths were deep, my mind was clear, and my heart was in sync with my soul’s purpose. Every cell in me was grateful to be alive and to experience this life.
Then, when I was entirely still, my hands seemed to follow the universe’s commands. I lost myself in the creation and I was completely oblivious to my very existence. This is a deeply meditative state, one that I can immerse in for hours.
A creation was born that day. A creation that I gifted one of my dearest childhood friends and his darling wife. It brings them joy, and they have hung it in the foyer of their beautiful home. This, in turn, gives me immense pleasure. I am in bliss knowing that I brought them joy.
There is a latent artist in all of us. Most of us fear putting our art out in the world because we think it’s not good enough. Creations, however, exist because someone had the courage to express themselves regardless of the fear of judgment.
Creativity is not limited to art but is, in fact, broader than that, and each one of us has a creative side. Release the fear of judgment and give yourself permission to experience the joy of creating, whatever that means to you. I realize now, that the act of making is a divine act. It is not just the outcome that brings beauty but the process that is beautiful and enlightening.
What if we treated each day as a blank canvas and allowed ourselves to be a conduit between heaven and earth? Surrendering to the divine and appreciating the varied and colorful strokes God paints on our day, is the ultimate nirvana. For me, this continues to be a work in progress...
Wishing you all a magical day!
With abundant love,