Our creativity only extends as far as our willingness to be present; and the creative process constantly challenges us to become more present by discovering the edges where we are unwilling to open up into the unknown.
I’ve noticed how my creativity ebbs and flows. I’m not one of those people who can sit down every day and produce something, whether a piece of writing or a piece of felt, or a drawing or painting. There are times when I would have to force myself to go to my playroom and see what happens. Often when I do that, the pieces I create feel uninspiring, flat, dull, and I am disinterested in them as soon as they are made.
These are also often the times when I’m struggling with something mentally and emotionally. I have a very well honed mind that thinks it can solve anything, and can often go to bed mentally exhausted. I come up against my own limits and I feel the pulling back, holding back in my body. Is this cowardice I often ask myself? Am I really wanting to do something so bold that I scare myself? Whatever it might be, I am unable to imagine it from that place.
A friend likened this process to neuron activity, where signals arrive at the synapse point but there are insufficient of them to make the jump across the gap. Eventually the momentum builds as more signals arrive, then all together, they create the potential spark for connection. This feels very apt for me, as I can begin to feel restless long before the potential for action arises.
So my creative process feels like this build up, from feeling the edge of the known, pulling back until there is sufficient momentum to leap. This is also nicely described in Human Design as the potential for mutation held within the Individual circuitry in the body. Each mutation needs a letting go, a dying off of some part in order for the new to come in. Constant letting go and renewing and this feels like the nature of all creativity which lives. Trees release their leaves but do not cease to be a tree; they just change a part, allowing leaves to die off provides the composted nutrients which then can nourish the regeneration and growth when Spring comes around.
There are so many parallels between this creative impulse and the living nature. And being willing to allow myself to walk along the edges where something must die before there can be the next growth has been a sometimes painful and difficult, yet also exciting and exhilarating journey.
When the fear of death is accepted, the fear of the blackness of nothingness, or simply the unknown, then life can truly flourish.
And our fears of death are often overlaid with generational and personal experience, so we approach it with a tangled web of thoughts and feelings, some of which can even have been formed before birth. It is these projections that can often stall the creative process, protecting us from our own unprocessed emotions.
There was a juxtaposition of Jupiter and Venus both in Hexagram (Gate/Gene Key) 28 which is in the Spleen centre. The Spleen centre is all about the immune system, releasing what isn’t required for healthy continuance, and awareness of how to survive. This Key 28 is the fear of death which drives the need to find or to create some sense of purpose in living. When this fear is allowed to continue unchallenged, life can become hollow and empty, a small prison of greyness and never ending tedium.
A friend and I had actually agreed with each other, in a semi serious way, to check in with each other in 3 months time to see whether our life situation and feelings had changed. So boring and hollow and grey our lives seemed from within this dark Shadow, that we were willing to consider ending them if nothing shifted in that time. It felt like a challenge to life, to myself, drawing a line in the sand to say, this is enough, something must give now.
I had a powerful dream during this planetary transit in which I entered into a black void. At first I was frightened by the complete nothingness, then I realised that I hadn’t ceased to exist, that I was still myself, and my fear transitioned into boredom. I wanted to escape, to find a way out, but yet I felt too bored to summon the energy to make a change. The feeling stayed with me when I awoke, and I knew it was some kind of death experience, or facing one of my fears of death. Yet it had not been such a big deal as I had thought it might be in the actual experiencing of the fear which passed or transmuted relatively quickly and easily. I’ve noticed how, when my logical and analytical mind isn’t creating story lines to explain how the past created the present and where it’s going to take me into the future, energy can shift amazingly rapidly.
“If you are to release your true creativity into the world, you must meet your own dark side. …..The amount of life you feel is directly proportionate to your willingness to face the fears that threaten your dreams.” Richard Rudd The Gene Keys: Unlocking the Higher Purpose Hidden in your DNA Gene Key 28
I became willing to face this fear, called by the desire and commitment to greater presence, to more vibrancy and aliveness, to create both my life and my art in my own unique way, to fully live my dreams. There is great power in willingness, like the baby’s finger that can move a mountain. Willingness allows creative potential. Like Goethe supposedly said: