Monday, January 7, 2008

The Artist as a Spiritual Explorer continued...

I am fully aware that this was serendipity now...this was the first glimpse at my life's calling...The Artist as a Spiritual Explorer... we can fly...we can soar... -Rebecca E. Parsons


How have I been led to this place...The Artist as a Spiritual Explorer...I have been on a journey for several years, with no idea of exactly where I was heading. When I began all I knew was, once I was called to go, I had no choice but to move out in the direction I was led.

The Readers Digest version of how my life's journey has led me to today- I have been creative all of my life. As a dancer, writer, journalist, and visual artist I have explored many pathways. I danced until I broke my neck at age 23. Having to find another outlet for my creativity, I began to paint and design. This led to a long career in graphic design. In the mid-80s, I rediscovered my love for painting and began a long lucrative career in decorative arts as a muralist. Graphic design led me to become a magazine editor for the past 10 years and to freelance jobs with some of the world's largest corporations (i.e. Kimberly-Clark, Prudential, IBM, GTE, BellSouth, Scientific Atlanta, Ernst & Young) and the US Olympic Committee. Murals and faux finishing led me to teaching, speaking engagements and writing as a regular columnist for several magazines. Another spinal break and subsequent surgeries brought me off of the ladder and into my own artwork.

Never look down to test the ground before taking your next step; only he who keeps his eye fixed on the far horizon will find the right road. -Dag Hammerskjold

But there is another side of me that requires nurturing as much as my creative side - my spiritual side. I was always a Sunday church-goer and volunteer. After the death of my mother in 2000, I began a journey into deeper prayer, consciously setting aside time each morning and evening for prayer. That led me to praying the hours as monks and nuns do. What I discovered was the more you pray, the more you want to pray. And you begin a journey into a relationship so vast and fulfilling that you desire to have that always present in your life.

This led me to seek a Spiritual Director in 2002. I was torn because I believed that in order to follow my spiritual self, I would need to abandon my creative self. With my director's help, I have been able to come to the understanding that my art does not conflict with my spiritual life, it enhances and enriches it. Two years ago, I entered a 4-year formation program to become a Spiritual Director myself.

For I know the plans I have for you, declares the LORD, plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future. -Jeremiah 29:11

My heart has been called to move my art explorations out into the world. I even bought Art as Prayer.com in 2007. Last week, after breaking my foot and slowing down, both worlds came together. During a contemplative/meditative session while asking for Divine guidance, I was given the outline of my future...my ministry...my calling...

The Artist as a Spiritual Explorer...

I have great clarity about all my past pathways, the fulfilling as well as the missteps. Each has had a part that has prepared me for this new path. The years of struggle with my art, the years of writing and teaching, the education process of becoming a Spiritual Director...all have led to this new doorway...the threshold of the rest of my life. It was opened to me and I have walked through it...filled with anticipation and excitement....

I consider myself a contemplative artist. My work is a combination of meditation and exploration...I cannot deny that part of myself that is so deeply rooted in faith and belief or the part of me that brings forth my visual voice from the work of my hands. I sometimes long for the peace of mind of the Buddhist monks, who have reached the place where nothing of this world can affect them...negatively or positively. They exist on a level where they are one with the Divine...I have glimpses of this place, but am still striving for it.

2007 was a year of deep lessons for me...moving, reflection, renewal, creativity, upheaval, unease...all brought with them major growth. I find growing edges of myself everyday and I am learning to embrace the me that I am today...at this moment. Those times that I was able to live in the present brought the biggest rewards...peace of mind and heart...and creativity beyond my wildest dreams. I am living proof that God had bigger plans for your life, than you could ever imagine...


When I am fully in this thing I call intuitivity (the confluence of intuition and creativity) I am most alive and in complete sync with that part of me that always has the answers and always knows where I should go...I want to spend an abundance of my time there from this point forward...and I invite you to accompany me...

My life will be about helping others become artist/explorers. I am led to discover how to let my divine intuition create without editing...I will let go of preconceived notions...I will play...I will find my unique, individual visual voice...and I will begin to use it powerfully.... and I will teach you how to do the same. I am so excited about the future...

I have started a new blog called...The Artist as a Spiritual Explorer...here...it will be the place where I can teach and reach others on the same path...an atelier of sorts...a place of intuitivity....

25 comments:

Mo'a said...

I loved reading about your journey.
Such an interesting and rich life.
Best of luck on your new endeavor...I will be visiting both of your blogs.

KaiBlueCreations said...

Aloha Rebecca,
I love the idea of a new blog for the new year. :) Mind if I pack a bag too? I'll bring the Tea!!
See you on your new blog,
Peace, Kai xx

Gemma said...

I have an awesome book called Drawing to God. In it there are exercises to do art as a prayer.
I'll check out your other site.
xx

Redneck Nerdboy! said...

New bloglook is looking good!

Karen Cole said...

I am happy that you have found a clear path, Rebecca. That's not an easy thing for most people.That's an excellent name for your new blog. I will be sure to visit.

Carmen said...

Amen to this post! I absolutely support your new blog and I more than agree with you.
I read about your foot.
Get better!
Again congratulations!!!

Stephanie said...

Rebecca,
I appreciate how you have opened up and shared this. intuitivity....I love that concept and will look forward to what you have to share on your new blog as well!

e. beck said...

wow .... what a fab post .... you are very giving and open with your words..... thanks!

NYCindividual said...

that 1st photo is especially beautiful

see you there! said...

It is always interesting to read the backgound of talented artists like yourself. I've bookmarked the new blog and am excited to see what journey you will lead us on.

Darla

Lisa S. Oceandreamer said...

I am looking forward to seeing how the new blog unfolds (I'll be there). I am warmed by your journey and I can feel the lightness in you. I so enjoyed reading your background knowing the road you've been on...the challenges you've encountered and how you have found from all of....this new and wonderful intuivity!
XOXOXO
Love and joy,
Lisa

Sandra Evertson said...

Lovely post!
Sandra Evertson

Naturegirl said...

Rebecca this post was filled with soul..your writing and feelings so moved me. You have been through much in your life and I regret that I found out about your foot by reading this post! I could not believe it and had to scroll down to find the post where you describe your accident!
I love the new direction you take with your 2 blogs! We are all blessed in having you here within our community of blogger friends.Your are so richly gifted in so many ways. hugs NG xoxoxo

paris parfait said...

What a fascinating post, dear Rebecca. I have been staring at your beautiful angel today. xoxox

Pam Aries said...

I believe that art can surely be a prayer! Even if we aren't aware of it ! Art is very deep when from the heart.

Abby Creek Art said...

Hi Rebecca, a very moving a inspirational post. Sometimes the not so fun parts of life (breaking a foot) lead us to where we should be. I'm looking forward to seeing where this journey continues to take you.xox

P.S. Maisie has a broken toe now so she feels for you!

rochambeau said...

Dear Rebecca,
How great that you are starting a new blog. Yes to your word intuitivity.
Your journey is unfolding just as it should. I've been enjoying my angel. Thank you for sharing her with me.
xo
Constance

Ro Bruhn said...

Congratulations Rebecca on your new blog and your
personal discoveries, it's wonderful that you've found your path, spiritual and in art.
Ro
xo

ShabbyInTheCity said...

What a deep thinker you are! I'm not quite that mature yet LOL! I'm happy for you though and love your new blog design :)

The Artful Eye said...

Rebecca your words leave me speechless. warm wishes as you follow this journey. I will be visiting.

Penny @ Lavender Hill Studio said...

Hi Rebecca,
What a interesting life you have lead so far! I have enjoyed learning more about you. I will stop in at your new blog. Take care.
Penny

Kari & Kijsa said...

Reminds us of our favorite quote : Art is man's nature, nature is God's art." A beautiful path we know it will be!!!

blessings,
kari & kijsa

Leslie said...

Good for you Rebecca and thanks for sharing your journey. I will be visiting you at your new blog too.

marita said...

wow a new look to your great 'old' blog. so happy you've find your way at last! hoping your foor is doing well, soon followed by a swift walk into a new future!
the pictures are so beautiful!

susanna said...

You've accomplished so much in your life, Rebecca. You should be so proud of yourself. You're an interesting person! And your spiritual journey is fascinating. I've been feeling that tug, too. That wanting more. I'm off to visit your new blog now...hope you are having a beautiful day...

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