My creative processes center on the theory, analysis, and unclogging of the human condition. I explore this through self-reflection of my own humanity and past experiences as well as alongside others who are on a parallel path of personal exploration creatively or otherwise. I enjoy sharing through process always with an understanding of mutual respect and support. I work to embrace myself and accept others by not judging who I am or what I believe in. I value truth, vulnerability, and accessibility. There is so much beauty and life in the unexpected. Rhythms are meant to be broken, paradigms are established and then shift, life is ever evolving and so are we; both communally and individually. While my artistic philosophy extends into my life philosophy the frame of reference I will use will be from my artistic medium. My medium of choice is the performing arts: acting and dancing.
Owning your artist-self takes a level of vulnerability that can be very uncomfortable at times and therefore takes practice, and self compassion. As my wise boyfriend and fellow artist, Jim Sent, says: "Art is not the reflection of what it means to be an artist, but the reflection of what it means to be human." To exist within ones humanity with honesty and surrender is not only sought after as a state of "dropping into a scene" or giving an "honest performance", but also something we practice and explore as a human race in many different facets of the fabric of life. We do this through religious and spiritual practices, yoga and meditation, and all the modalities of the healing arts such as: massage, energy healing, acupuncture, chiropractics, and psychotherapy.
For me, the practice of artistry and the exploration of spirituality are synonymous. There is a great ebb and flow that exists all around us. This life force has gone by many different names in cultures throughout the world and across time. Barbara Ann Brennan refers to this phenomenon as the Universal Energy Field (UEF) in Her book Hands of Light: A Guide to Healing Through the Human Energy Field. Existing somewhere between the realms of matter and energy, some scientists refer to this same UEF as bio-plasma. An artist can gain more tools to work from an honest place by the study of not only the UEF but also through the study and practiced perception of and interaction with the Human Energy Field (HEF) also referred to as the human aura. This well of information and spirit can be consciously tapped into and perceived on different levels. Perception of this ebb and flow allows the previously unseen to become visible to the beholder. It allows us as humans to feel and see energetic shifts and openings in the environment and people around us. One could also call this awareness of energy, connection. I believe the power of stillness, and being "dropped in" is most potent in the performing arts when this skill of awareness-through-connection is practiced purposefully. (Brennan, 1987)
Within stillness we allow a type of surrender into nothingness which I will now refer to as Nothing. This surrender into Nothing is the practice that I believe to be the keystone to the performing arts as a means of catharsis, and transcendence. The pathway into Nothing can be felt when we forget a line, a step, a note and trust that it will be there for us. It is a surrender to fear by giving in, and can feel internally as if you are jumping off a cliff or riding a roller coaster. When this lurching of the stomach arises there is an option to either grip and crash, or to let go and fly into the experience. Practicing letting go with grace and without reservation takes courage, trust, and vulnerability. It is here that we move from practice into becoming; shifting from the doing into the being. This is when a performance becomes "honest".
To further describe the space that I am referencing I will explore the HEF or Human Aura in more detail. The HEF has 7 layers as described by Brennan. These layers are related to the 7 chakras and radiate beyond the physical body in succession. The first 3 layers (Etheric Body, Emotional Body, Mental Body) exist on the physical plane, the last 3 (Etheric Template Body, Celestial Body, Ketheric Template or Causal Body) exist on the spiritual plane. In order for the energy from these two planes to "communicate" they must travel through the heart, which is the 4th and middle layer (Astral Level) of the HEF. In my experience, the space of surrendering into nothingness is linked to the relationship between the Etheric body (from "ether", the state between energy and matter) - first layer of the HEF (physical plane), and the Etheric Template Body - fifth layer of the HEF (spiritual plane) and their pathway to connection through the heart or Astral Level of the HEF.
"...in etheric space, to form a sphere...An infinite number of planes comes from all directions and fill in all space, except for a spherical area of space left empty. This defines the sphere. It is the area not filled in by all the planes that meet each other that then defines an empty spherical space. Thus, the etheric template level of the aura creates an empty or negative space in which the first or etheric level of the aura can exist. The etheric template is the template for the etheric body, which then forms the grid structure (structured energy field) upon which the physical body grows. Thus, the etheric template level of the universal energy field contains all the shapes and forms that exist on the physical plane, except on the template level. These forms exist in negative space, creating an empty space in which the etheric grid structure grows and upon which all physical manifestation exists." (Brennan, 1987, p. 52)
In the absence of doing, when we allow ourselves to exist within Nothing and play in the empty space defining the etheric layers, this is when anything and everything can happen. It is a true access point to all emotions, intellect, physicality, from an honest un-forced space. I will call this access point Everything, and it allows us to function within the truth and dynamic nature of Self with a capital "S". Only in true surrender do we find freedom and endless possibility. I believe in self-discovery through reflection and a willingness to let go and allow that Nothing to happen, because within that Nothing, exists Everything. I believe in the power of surrender; that there is an endless expanse of truth and experience that can only be found in absence - for when we let the burden of ego and learned knowledge fall way, what is left is the truth of who we are. I believe in letting go; letting go of pre-conceptions and judgement in exchange for wanting to truly be seen and to truly see others in return. I believe we all create our own story. I choose to cultivate my story through connection, reflection, collaboration, and action...then repeat.
We are all given the gift of sight and when that is used, explored, and expanded upon there is an emptiness, a void that opens up to reveal that everything exists within us all. We are all artists and our great masterpiece is life itself.
I am an artist. You are an artist.
We are all artists...truly.
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