Lessons from Eckhart Tolle Part 2


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Dear Laura,

I am back in the studio and making new work.  I find that there are productive, happy times in the studio and then other times when I just can’t make any art because I am decompressing, digesting, and unwinding from a busy life.  So far this year I have had a full Spring semester of teaching, produced forty new pieces of art (Charleston Supported Art), prepared for an exhibition with you, participated in ArtFields, traveled to Pittsburg, North Carolina and Florida with my roller derby team, and attended to my children and home life.

No wonder I am so tired. Sometimes I don’t realize how much I have accomplished until  I write it out like that.  This is one of the many reasons I benefit from writing to you Laura and having everyone else from cyber world listen in.

Do you find you have these creative deserts in your practice where life just exhausts you?  What do you do to work through them?

It has taken me about six weeks to travel through my current creative desert. I didn’t even fill it up with useful things for my art practice- simply did the laundry and dishes.

It feels good to make work again and I hope I can continue this through the summer (which is typically a creative desert for me- ugh).  As I was working I continued to listened to Eckhart Tolle’s book “A New Earth”.  I was struck by how he picked four objects of significance to humans and two of these are what we often make work about.  Your inspiration from your garden flowers and my reoccuring metaphor of birds.  Here is what he had to say……

Since time immemorial, flowers, crystals, precious stones, and birds have held special significance for the human spirit. Like all life forms they are temporary manifestations of the underlying one life, one consciousness. Their special significance, and the reason why humans feel such fascination for and affinity with them can be attributed to their ethereal quality. Once there is a certain degree of presence, of still and alert attention in human beings perceptions, they can sense the divine life essence of the one in dwelling consciousness and spirit in every creature, every life form, recognize it as one with their own essence and so love it as themselves.

Until this happens however, most humans only see only their outer forms, unaware of the inner essence. Just as they are unaware of their own essence and identify only with their own physical and psychological form. In the case of a flower, crystal, precious stone, and bird however even someone little or no presence can occasionally sense that there is more there than the mere physical existence of that form. Without knowing that this is the reason why he or she is drawn towards it, feels an affinity with it.


When we were together we spoke of “stillness” in a similar line of thinking as Tolle.  I am glad that you want to explore with me what stillness, attentive observation, and listening has to teach us.  I have started my ReVision 115 with this in mind.  Posted below is my work in progress while spending time in your garden.  I picked the lemon balm as my subject matter.  I will post more as this process unfolds.  I was glad to read in your post that you picked the lilacs as your subject for your ReVision 115.  I miss that flower- it doesn’t grow here!  I suppose that is why I picked the jasmine.  Lilacs have same influence over me that jasmine does.  May we both find the “underlining one consciousness” as Tolle says through this work….oh yeah enlightenment!

Enjoy the weekend,




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