Posts Tagged 'happiness'

223.Many words about something that is really simple.

P1000218

When I started this blog, one of the first things I wrote, was about the question: What is art good for? Today it became clear to me in a different way, with the morning writing. Art is a way to experience fully what is usually covered and obscured by our filters.

Why is it important to experience anything directly and without obscuration? Because this is what we are here for. When we do what we are here for, we become happy and our unhappiness ends. If you want, you can turn what I just said upside down. Then it will be: Experiencing directly is what makes us happy, and because it does, we may say that it is why we are here.

I’m going to describe this slowly, step by step.

When we become more and more aware, and our awareness becomes subtler, we start to be able to experience our thoughts as if they are something material, passing in space, and we can experience our imaginings as something that you can touch and feel. This is when we start to see what is going on with us. Before this we don’t know experientially how life works.

Here is an example. In the quiet of this space (inside of which we see the thoughts), which is really who we are, and you can call it consciousness and awareness and anything, inside of this an imagination movie appears. It is very fast and almost unnoticeable. The imagination movie is a wordless thought. Because we are in a deep state, we are aware to that degree of delicacy that we can detect what it is about. Let’s say it is about turning our head sideways and looking out through the open window. We can see all of this in the movie of our imagination that happens very fast. We can know how it feels too. And immediately with it, we turn our physical head and look out through the open window. The imagination was a creating moment. The turning of the physical head was the manifestation. (The world outside that I saw through the window was another part of the manifestation. Both my body-mind and the sight outside must be there for an experience to happen.)

You can say that when the imagined action happened, we have already experienced what it was and maybe we do not need to experience it physically? We have already had the experience. This is true, but not for most of the people. Being here in a physical form gives us the possibility to experience it in a different way. This time it has become denser and can be experienced as a physical experience.

And here comes the second part, for which we are here. With our body we experience looking out through the open window and seeing something there that we understand as happening outside of us. The way this experience makes us feel is seen by our inner self, that infinite space that we are. In this space a stir occurs and its waves go far to be shared with all that we are. This is very pleasant. If we experience ourselves as this space, we enjoy this tremendously. It is thrilling and beautiful. We love this. We don’t need anything else. And then we become ready for the next created adventure that will be returned to us so beautifully.

So there was a circle of action here. From our infinite self arose the creation of a physical experience. The physical experience in its turn gave our infinite self some excitement and pleasure. I as a human being, I am in the middle between my infinite self and the created world. I am here to enable this circle. I am the physical body who receives the physical event and gives it back to my infinite self.

Before we develop this sensitivity to the tiniest movements of energy, so that we can detect all of the above, we miss the direct experience. The act of looking out through the window and the experience of seeing something, immediately provokes many subconscious beliefs. These respond quickly, quicker than our conscious thinking. They tell us what we see and what it is connected to and many more stories, and the experience becomes blurred or totally covered. So we miss the direct experience.

Being able to experience directly brings happiness. This subtle response in the infinite space of our consciousness is happiness and playfulness and curiosity and caring. Not experiencing directly, we will always feel that something is lacking and we cannot make this feeling go.

But we have a compensation for what we miss. It is the arts. The arts are capable of going deep into the more subtle-sensitivity state, where the direct experience has been felt, and they can bring this experience out for us, to where we can experience it consciously, through a metaphor or a simile. It is not the thing itself but good enough so that we can experience the tiniest variations of movement of energy in a magnified way, usually. And this is the role of art in our life. We make art out of the longing to feel the real, un-obscured experience. It is like a guiding sign that points us toward the direct experience. Art shows us the way to happiness. When we walk toward happiness with the help of art, We already feel that we live meaningfully and we have deep satisfaction.

Does the satisfaction last? For a while it does, and then we feel the urge to make another work of art.

To say it in a very simple way: We make art so that we can be happy. We are happy when we experience deeply.

You see? we don’t need that much to be happy. Try it out.

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201. The vividness of the present moment

Radiating

Radiating

This time I’m not going to write about this painting and the other one down the page. I added them here to decorate. Maybe they are connected?

These words came to me:

As long as you send out, you do not receive.

The elaboration is below.

I am doing short meditations during the day, of relaxing all the focuses. I look inside and find where I am focused and let it go. When I first came to a state without focusing, it felt a little frightening, because as it turns out all or most of our habitual focusing is about wanting to be safe. We are afraid all the time and watch out for whatever might happen. This is why, when I relaxed the focuses, I felt the fear from which they came.

After some time of doing this, I suddenly felt the vividness of the present moment, in a way I have never felt before. I felt how much it is alive. I can’t describe this in words but it is wonderful. So now I understand what it means to be in the moment.

It means first to let go of the fears and trust that you are okay without being on guard. And when the experience of the vividness comes, you know experientially that you are much more than okay. You are in wonderland.

Connect it to your intuitive flow method, says my inner guide.

So I do.

Being in the now happens on its own when you follow only your sense of beauty while making art. It is much easier to be in the moment through artmaking, than to do it mentally. When we do this, we also feel that it is okay to be without our fear focus. Instead we go to our interest, curiosity and love. This is a good way to let go of the fears. You can’t act out of curiosity and out of fear at the same time. If you act out of curiosity, you are not afraid.

And as we go on following the sense of beauty, we stay in this state of experiencing the vividness of the moment for the duration of the artmaking.

When we read the art, we do this while being-in-the-now for a second time, and experience the vividness of our artwork. This is experiencing how it felt to be present a few minutes ago. But the experience of this happens in the present, because it is based on looking at the art now.

Another issue that arises is the idea of “the present.” This idea belongs to the way of understanding that thinks that there is time, there are past, present and future. But what is meant by saying “to be in the present” is not to be in the middle of that line of time. It is about being in a different, deeper state, in which the understanding that there is time does not happen. When we look at it at first we think that this is a strange way of understanding, and that we need to shut off some important capacities in order to imagine that such a state, in which we do not know about time can exist. Eventually this strange state, we come to realize, is the truth of how things are. And the thinking process that we developed as humans, and that has the idea of time in it, is one ingredient of the state of affairs and not the basis of everything else.

Now I think that it is a very good idea to read the art, to find the fears or any other unhappy feelings, and paint them.

As we paint them, we release them. And I have written about this a lot.

In this way there is a complete practice: Draw what is going on inside of you now. Be guided by your sense of beauty only. Read the art, also from the state of awareness and flow, as I teach in many other places, including the book “Opening Intuitive Flow Through Artwork.” Find fears and draw them to release them.

End with a new drawing of “what is happening now” so that you can see that you have changed. When you know that you have changed, the change stays.

Floating landscape

Floating landscape

Curiosity, as it turns out, is openness to receive. It is a burning desire to receive experiences from the universe. Being open like this and receiving experiences is abundance. This is what abundance boils down to. We want to be rich so that we can be unafraid and open up to experience the present moment. We don’t know that this is what we want but it is so. Experiencing the present moment with all its richness and depth is happiness. We do not have to wait until we are rich or until something that we believe will make us experience joy will happen. We just have to release our fears and open up now.

The fear and the caution are defensive activity aimed at what we perceive as outward. It is a pushing away activity. As long as there is this pushing away, there cannot be a receiving.

The trust in the truth of now starts when we discover experientially that the truth has to do with love, with acceptance, with fun, with fulfillment. When we discover this, our attitude starts to change from fear to a desire to have more of the truth. So if you want to help people change their attitude toward the truth, you have to bring them to experience the love, the fun and the acceptance that are in the truth of the moment.

By making art from your sense of beauty, you yourself become the accepting and the curious entity. You experience being awareness in action. You don’t make art from the feeling of wanting to push things away, but from the openness that wants to experience.

So the question now is: How do you bring people to realize that what they do in the artmaking, as they work from their sense of beauty, is the expression of the truth. And how can you bring them to the knowledge that they can become that entity that acts out of the sense of beauty all the time? How can you bring people to relax their judging, and let themselves be this eager and accepting curiosity?

131. Visual meditation

This entry is long. It described one more of those processes in which I discover an issue that is central and comes up again and again. I release the issue or dissolve it thoroughly by doing a process that you have seen before and today I call it a visual meditation.

Imagine yourself meditating. In a few minutes you calm down a little. And then a feeling comes up and you are uncomfortable with it. What happens now?

First let’s consider the feeling. It came up for a reason. You were trying to meditate and it came to stop you from doing it. Why? Because meditation connects you to who you really are, a being who does not have the limitations of the ego. The ego will have to give up its existence, if you go there, and it does not want to do it. You have trained it to protect itself in every way it can.

So it is the ego’s fear of being eliminated that appears in the different ways that it does. This disturbing feeling, arising in the meditation, is one of them. It is connected to a certain issue that is important for the ego. The ego has many issues. I don’t want you to feel negatively about the ego so I’ll say what the ego is, as I see it. It is the belief that you are a separate being who has to protect himself in order to be safe. This belief collects about itself numerous thought patterns of self-protection and preservation. That’s all it is.

So here a choice comes our way, as this issue comes up in the meditation and makes us feel uncomfortable. What do we choose to do: One possibility is to leave the ego intact, maybe change something unimportant in it, or not even this. The other possibility is to start eliminating the ego.

I have to disclose a secret. There is no escape from eventually eradicating the ego altogether. But we can postpone it. If we postpone, the same issue will come up for us again and again. The more we fight with it, the stronger it becomes. Then comes a time when it is so painful to have it that we must do something to ease the pain. It may even turn into an illness of the body. Many times it does just this.

Most people don’t know this, and therefore try their best to push the unpleasant experiences away.

There is something else that encourages us to dissolve the ego. It is a deep sense of satisfaction and happiness, when we do it. If we start working on dissolving the ego, we start feeling these two and more. We feel joy arising and we feel that we live purposefully. And when we push the unpleasant feeling away, in spite of the momentary relief, if we listen to how we feel when we do it, we find that we feel fear, tension, discomfort and other feelings like these.

So if we listen to ourselves and become more aware of what we feel, we take hold of a navigation mechanism that if we utilize, will take us all the way to freedom from our ego. The same issues that are afraid to be dissolved, are also those issues that cause us psychological suffering. For these issues we go to therapy. So therapy, when it helps us get rid of such issues, is also a spiritual practice.

In meditation there are two ways to release issues. The first is to frustrate them. The issues get their energy from the attention that we give them. We give them attention because we feel fear and think that they are important and indicate dangerous conditions. So if we just choose every time when we feel an issue arising to give our full attention not to the issues, but to the meditation, the issues don’t get our attention. They try harder and harder, but then they die from lack of energy, because we do not give them the energy of fear that sustains them. Do they die completely? Most probably not. They will come up again and again. But in this method we are focused on going straight to experience what we truly are, so we do not care about the issues. Once you experience who you are, it will become much easier for you to let go of all of these issues. If you choose this way you need to meditate continuously. If you take a break for a few days, the issues that were neglected but still have some presence, will get stronger again. If you loose your focus, the ego takes control again.

The second way is to give attention to the issues that arise, but not in the usual way of giving attention. Usually, as we said before, that attention that we give is fear. We feel afraid that the issue will be dangerous to us, so we try to stop it or run away from it into another thought or activity. The attention that is beneficial is acceptance. We look at the emotional phenomena without getting involved. We allow the feeling to arise and flourish fully in our attention and we pay close attention without thoughts. It is like the wonder that a child can feel when seeing something he has never seen before, and he does not have words for it yet. If we do that, the feeling will grow, show itself and dissolve into nothing, without any effort extended by us. This kind of watching without being involved in the usual way cannot be done when we are in the thinking mode. We have to switch to a deeper state, which we call meditation.

The visual meditation that follows is of the second kind. We enter a meditative state by becoming intuitive. And we become intuitive by following the personal sense of beauty as the only guide in the art making. The following seven drawings were done in this way. After they were made, I read them in ways that have been described before in this blog. In my case the reading becomes poems, just because I like poems but they could end up being short stories too. The main thing is that the reading is intuitive too. It is just a way to bring the awareness from a non-verbal state to a verbal state, so that we can see what is there and choose what we want to do.

After each drawing was done and read, I asked: And how is the feeling now? And made the next drawing.

Glass ceiling

Glass ceiling

A.

This is fear

In the shape of

A glass ceiling

This you may not do, it says

Yes there is some light above

But you are not allowed to go there

Or else

Here is the memory of a stick

That goes generations back

The rain that falls

Comes from sticky memories too

It blurs the skies

And makes puddles

That don’t reflect the light

You have some space

Under the ceiling

That you can play in

But do not go up or else

And I will go on

Protecting you

This way

To death.

 

Stench

Stench

B.

The tree of mal intent

Grows in the bog

Its branches are like foul smells

Horrors and screams

Arise as fumes

And that’s the landscape of my youth

The tree is me

And the stench blocks the light.

 

A cloud of worry

A cloud of worry

C.

The stench became a cloud of worry

There is a touch of comfort blue

In the softness of the sky

Some light comes through

Maybe

There is a way

To the light?

 

The fight of light and dark

The fight of light and dark

D.

The war of light and dark has started

The light is happy

The dark is so afraid

Light comes together

As one

Dark separates itself to many

It lingers

It fights

It falls and curses

It crowds

And it knows

That it can be

Blown away

By the wind

Any moment.

The dance

The dance

E.

Just at the time

When it started to look hopeless

They started to dance

A crazy dance

The good, the bad, the roots, the foliage

The sky, the blood, the love,

The soot

Round and round they go

Faster and faster.

 

 

Nothing can be seen

Nothing can be seen

F.

Until you cannot see a thing

As nothing wants to show itself

And it is quiet

It’s time to invite my true self now

To come

And play.

The dance of joy

The dance of joy

G.

And when it does

It is a crazy dance as well

But with a sense

Of joy

And wellness.


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The healing process

Entries 1-58 show how I use the method of Intuition Through Art to heal myself from Peripheral Neuropathy.

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