Finished reading: The Artist’s Way - Spirtual Electricity: The Basic Principles by Julia Cameron. 📚
I don’t have a lot to say overall about this chapter, so I’m just going to share my annotations with you.
We tend to think, or at least fear, that creative dreams are egotistical, something that God wouldn’t approve of for us… If your mom or dad expressed doubt or disapproval for our creative dreams, we may project that same attitude onto a parental god.
I think me not really fitting the mold of a lot of the people Cameron is addressing is going to be a pattern for a lot of this program. My parents were incredibly supportive of any creative dream I might express. A lot of this came from my mom’s own experience of her parents treating creative activities as frivolous pursuits, I think. She took great care to support myself and my siblings in our creativity. My dad did, too, though I don’t think it came from the same place as my mom’s experience. They still are both very supportive of our dreams.
As you work with the tools in this book, as you undertake the weekly tasks, many changes will be set in motion. Chief among these changes will be the triggering of synchronicity: we change and the universe furthers and expands that change.
This reminds me of a beautiful quote from Bakara Wintner’s WTF is Tarot? and How Do I Do It?:
In The Fool, we say yes to the universe and in The Magician the universe says yes back to us.
I’m not big into manifestation talk or The Secret or whatever, but I do think deliberately setting an intention subtly moves us in ways that make us more likely to meet that intention.
We are, ourselves, creations.
I really think this idea aligns well with my whole cosmic art mom thing. Every human grew in some other human’s uterus. I like to imagine my kid as his own person, of course, but also as a collaborative work of art to which I’ve contributed. (I feel like that sounds icky. I don’t mean it in an icky way.)
You probably won’t have time to complete all of the other tasks in any given week… In choosing which half of the tasks to do, use two guidelines. Pick those that appeal to you and those you strongly resist.
In earlier attempts, I found that I struggle with choosing tasks because none of them seem to evoke responses in me. Since I’m doing this on my own timeline, and I have such a hard time picking, I’m going to try them all.
We begin to excavate our buried dreams.
I’ll be interested to see how I respond to this. I haven’t made my decisions based on what’s expected or nice. My mom instilled in me a deep sense that being “nice” is not as valuable as it might first seem. (As a young person, people always told her how nice she was.) Nice and kind are not the same thing. I think it’s important to be kind. I don’t think it’s important to be nice. I don’t think of my dreams as buried as much as shelved. I know what they are and where they are, and sometimes I take them out and play with them. I have never allowed work to drive my creative interests out of me.
How do you know if you are creatively blocked? Jealousy is an excellent clue. Are there artists whom you resent? Do you tell yourself, “I could do that, if only…”
More often than not, instead of jealous, I feel inspired. If this person wrote a book after 10 years of not writing anything, so can I! If this person built a comedy career with only a bachelor’s degree in theater, I don’t need any extra training to start doing comedy! If this person only started writing their novel after two years of research, it’s okay that I’m in a research phase and haven’t started writing yet!
Stop telling yourself that dreams don’t matter, that they are only dreams and that you should be more sensible.
I wonder how much of this isn’t a problem for me because I have divorced the notions of art and money. Not that people shouldn’t get paid for creating art, but that I don’t have to wait to create art until it’s my job. I do all kinds of things that aren’t my job because they bring me joy. My job doesn’t have to be the vessel for my dreams. If it can, neat! If it’s not, that doesn’t mean I can’t find other ways to live my dreams.