In Roman mythology, Vesta was the virgin goddess of purity, home, and hearth. She was represented by a sacred fire which Vestal priestesses tended to night and day in her temple. As long as this vital fire was kept lit, the people were protected under Vesta’s guardianship.

 

The Romans externalized this potent creative force as an eternal flame, but it can also symbolize the light we carry within each of us ~ our passion, ‘muse’ or inspiration. And like the Vestal flame, we need to tend to our own sacred fires with respect and awareness.

 

There are times when inspiration comes effortlessly, ideas flowing in a stream of consciousness we have only to follow. But sometimes we struggle for ideas and the more we try to control the process and demand things work our way, the more we are met with silence, a blank page, or wasted efforts.

 

Often, inspiration finds us when we are not actively engaged in solving problems or working on our craft ~ it can catch us off guard while we’re taking a shower, on a long walk, waiting in line… and  sometimes, it comes to us in our dreams.  It’s not that we are powerless to the ‘muse’ as something external to ourselves, but rather that we have yet to learn how to recognize that spark as something within us.

9. INSPIRATION ~ The Inner Fire

Essay by Katarzyna Vedah.  April 1, 2019

Tending to our fire can mean respecting our creative cycles, regulating our energy, and moderating periods of control, discipline and conscious mastery with rest, play and unconscious wandering.

 

We experience our lives using both sides of the brain ~ with logic and emotion, structure and flow, objective and subjective reality ~ and what we call inspiration may be said to live between the two, facilitating the connection. When one side tries to dominate the other, extremes may erupt in an attempt to compensate for the imbalance.

 

If, in the heat of creative overdrive, we neglect our physical needs, balance, and routine self-care, the surge of energy can finally burn up, leaving us depleted and depressed. Or, after a time of repressing our needs and natural self-expression, the energy may eventually burst through, flooding our senses and overloading us with overactive or grandiose thoughts.

 

If we are caught in such extreme energetic compensations and cycles of highs and lows for too long, learning to live in the ‘middle’ can end up feeling a bit numb while our system takes the time to adjust to the subtle nuances of day-to-day life again. 

Creative inspiration need not lead to such extremes, however. With patience, practice, and awareness, we can learn to respect the natural cycle of our creative lives while tending to our sacred flames.

 

Sometimes, working with inspiration means translating our private pains and personal desires into something more universal and publicly accessible.

 

Such creative acts can move beyond the confines of immediate time and space and become something the world can connect to and participate in ~ inspiring others to their own sacred temples and inner flames.

VIDEO (YouTube):

Who Decides What Art Means? (TED-Ed)

Art – History of Ideas (School of Life)

Arts & Culture in an Open Society

VIDEO (YouTube): Art Assignment

The Case for Surrealism

Myth of the Tortured Artist

The Truth of the Tortured Artist

 

WEB ARTICLE: Good Therapy

Art and Trauma: Creativity As a Resiliency Factor. Athena H. Phillips
 

DOCUMENTARY (YouTube): Trailer

First Position (Bess Kargman)

Kusama – Infinity (Heather Lenz)

Little Stones (Sophia Kruz)

 

RIPPLE EFFECT

CREATIVE INSPIRATIONS TO ENGAGE THE CAPACITY TO FEEL
Fire Show

 

THE FLAME THAT BURNS

FILM / VIDEO (YouTube): Trailer

Amélie (Jean-Pierre Jeunet)

Ruby Sparks (Faris & Dayton)

Touched With Fire (Paul Dalio)

AUDIO-VISUAL / VIDEO (Vimeo):

SKALAR -  Bauder & Ray

DANCE / VIDEO (YouTube):
Gabrielle Roth  (Omega Institute)

5Rhythms of Dance (Mskekemichel)

 

WEBSITE: 5Rhythms

MUSIC / VIDEO (YouTube):

Light it Up - Major Lazer

Parallel Lines - Sterling Grove

Fiction – The xx

ANIMA (Thom Yorke, P. T. Anderson)

ARTISTS / VIDEO:

Bowie on Stardust (Blank on Blank)

Future of Art - Marcel Dzama (Artsy)
Organizing Chaos - Marcel Dzama (art21)

 

WEBSITE / ARTISTS: Art21:

Art in the Twenty-First Century
 

 

HEALTHY M.O.

HEALTHY MENTAL OUTLOOK & PSYCHOLOGICAL SUPPORT
Creative Design

UP IN THE CLOUDS

THE POWER OF BOREDOM & DAYDREAMS

VIDEO (YouTube):

Staring Out of the Window (School of Life)

Hard Work of Being Lazy (School of Life)

Apathy to the Rescue! (Emotion Dynamics)

VIDEO (YouTube): TED Talk

Doodlers, Unite! – Sunni Brown

Benefits of Boredom – Cindy Foley

The Value of Boredom – Genevieve Bell

 

VIDEO (YouTube):

Learn To Face Boredom (Impro Supreme)
Nature of Creativity
(Academy of Ideas)

VIDEO (YouTube): Sean Tucker

Sean Tucker – Channel Trailer

Best Creative Ideas in the Shower

ARTICLE: By Maria Popover

Nick Cave on Creativity, the Myth of Originality, and How to Find Your Voice.

BOOK: The Creative Fire. By C. P. Estés

VIDEO (YouTube):

Mystery - Rollo May (Our Amazing World)

The Human Dilemma (Thinking Allowed)

 

THE PROCESS

PRACTICAL REINFORCEMENT FOR SELF-CARE & DAY-TO-DAY LIVING
Creative Arrangment

 BEYOND INSPIRATION: GETTING STUFF DONE

INTERVIEW / SPEECH / VIDEO:

Where Do You Get Your Ideas From?

(Wheeler Centre)

Neil Gaiman Addresses Class of 2012 (University of the Arts)

VIDEO (YouTube):

You're Just Not 'Feeling It' (Sean Tucker)

How To Be Creative (PBS Off Book)

VIDEO (YouTube):

Creative People – Tina Seelig (99U)

Habits of Highly Effective Artists (Blender)

VIDEO (YouTube): Storytellers

How an Artist Turns Pro

 

VIDEO: OPTIMIZE with Brian Johnson

The War of Art by Steven Pressfield

Do the Work by Steven Pressfield

Show Your Work! by Austin Kleon

VIDEO (YouTube): BrightSight Speakers

Making Ideas Happen - Scott Belsky
 

BOOK: Making Ideas Happen.

By Scott Belsky

 

SHIFT GEARS

EXPANDING PERSPECTIVES, AWARENESS & CONSCIOUSNESS
Chinese Opera Kiss

CHANNELING DESIRE & THE INNER MUSE