Posts tagged #art

Alan Moore is a world-class sorcerer worth studying, and so is your dreaming mind...

Dear Wonder, Here are the gems I dug up a few weeks ago. If you'd like my discoveries fresh in your inbox, sign up here.

THE GEMS

 The Mindscape of Alan Moore - free online documentary 

 

I've enjoyed Alan Moore's amazing graphic novels for a long time, but it wasn't until just the other day that a friend posted an interview with him on facebook that I saw his wild-man visage and heard his intense working-class British accent. Just watching Alan Moore speak feels like its own graphic adventure. This documentary gives ample opportunity to listen to Moore explain himself and his creative ethos in-depth. Which is grand. Here's a bit of Moore's dark, dry humor on his own career trajectory: "I found myself working at a skinning yard and tannery, at the bottom of Bedford road in North Hampton, which was probably the bleakest place I've ever been in my life, waking up at seven in the morning and dragging huge heavy dripping sheep skins over vats of urine, water, blood, excrement....I was expelled from that job for smoking dope in the bathroom.... the next job I could get was that of a toilet-cleaner at a hotel... it more or less went down hill from there until I finally ended up as a comics writer."

Stephen LeBerge's Lucidity Institute

 

I've been contemplating making Love & Anarchy more about dreams and dreaming-- and in my researches I came across Stephen LeBerge's wonderful resource. LeBerge is one of the pioneering researchers into lucid dreaming, and has published a number of classic books on the subject. The Lucidity Institute page features excerpts from the books and pretty much everything one could need to get started with becoming conscious within one's dreams.

Ithaca - Michael Guy Bowman (free streaming album)

My weekly stroll around bandcamp uncovered the quirky, upbeat and delightful pop genius of Michael Guy Bowman. Listening to this a lot like listening to early 90s Top 40, with all the earnest weirdness of that genre underscored and inflated. Bowman has done for the 90s what the Modern Lovers did for the 50s -- revved it up again with fresh, bouncy enthusiasm and unironic joy.

UPDATES

I interviewed one of my favorite folks, Matthew Stillman, about creativity and living in the gift. Part one of that interview is available now.

Abigail Amalton offered a beautiful guest post on Art, Love and Transmutation.

I've been thrilled to have coaching sessions with amazing folks all over the world. After one session, a client told me that she felt she'd had a bigger shift from talking to me for 45 minutes than she would have from years of therapy. So, that was rad. Wanting your own breakthrough? Why not schedule your own session with me today?

Art, Love and Transmutation - A guest post by Abigail Amalton

Art is about love. It is love, pure love.

 

I can't even begin to describe what music has done for me. How can an art form, independent of the flaws of its creators, catalyze such deep healing and transformation? How can somebody else's stories lead me back to myself, deeper into my own bliss? The deeper I move into the subjective, the more often I hit the universal. Do we all ultimately share the same core?

Art is love. And love is transcendent, transformative. Love has no opposite. Love is the step beyond dualist thinking. Dualism dissolves completely in the heat and light of pure love. This wonderful step beyond is not even thought nor is it just feeling - it's pure being. Love is being absorbed in the flow: the conscious observer-participant co-creating the universe, the drop of water in the endless ocean of existence. It isn't merely an emotion, not merely a state of mind - love is all-encompassing being. It is a subtle awareness of the life force that flows through us - through bone and bloody capillary, through neural networks and the serpentine energetic currents in our spines.

Love is the knowing that this life force is one and the same with what moves stars to begin their lives in misty stellar nurseries, light years away. It is the possibility that everything in this universe, every last little organism, every drop of blood is alive - purely. And simply waiting for us to realize this.

Love is a new way of being on this planet. It revolutionizes each individual who decides to make it a way of life, changing her so that she may never go back, never settle for anything less than pure joy. So what do lovers do? We live for love. We show, through our lives, that it can be done. That we can partake in this cosmic dance with joy - that this is our birthright. Love is the activation of our potential for continued and unending bliss.

Love transmutes.

 

It is the knowing that in spite of pain, we live. Pain, however deep, helps us remember that we are embodied and interconnected. When we reflect on our pain, then we remember that we are ensouled. As long as you love, you'll never lose your soul. So, why continue to hurt? Catalyze the transformation with a deliberate joy in every moment of this ecstatic existence. Push for it. Let it open you up. Let joyfulness be a breaking open of the calcified shell of the ego. Decide you'll never live in the egoic mode again - and when you do, laugh at it.

Live this way and let life have its way with you, move through you - let spirit sense matter in whatever way it will, for the purpose of love. Live this way and you won't have to meet with death to finally live - because you will no longer unconsciously push yourself further and further to hurt simply to feel alive.

Gather with other souls in love and explore collaborative ecstasy. Collaborative beauty. Explorations like these are how the planet will begin again, how we can jumpstart conscious evolution. Let go of the patterns we only cling to out of habit and replace them only with love.

Love is how we will reach the stars sooner than we think.

Abigail Amalton is an amazing artist who lives and creates in New York City.  Check her out over at The Silent Infinite!

Guest post!

 

Dear fabulous writer,

 

Awesome Your Life gets 1,500 new readers a month! Whoah! I want to spread the happy, so I've been thinking that I'd love to start publishing great guest posts here on Awesome Your Life.

 

My readers are interested in personal and societal evolution and in the "dreamy side of life"-- so any thoughtful essays / how-to's that you've got that has to do with dreams, higher consciousness, astrology, myth, theater, ritual, neo-shamanism, tantra, positive thinking, psychic phenomenon, self-improvement, societal change, holistic health, online entrepreneurship, gift economy, tarot, creativity, etc. would be totally welcome.  It's fine with me if the article has already appeared on your own blog. I'm all for syndication.

 

Please go ahead and send me your post a long with a brief bio in the body of an email to sweetsongofjoy at gmail dot com. Let the piece be between 500 - 1000 words. I'll get back to you promptly to let you know if your post will be a perfect fit.

 

Love! Carolyn

The Difficult Art of Self-Definition

Creative Commons License photo credit: Reebbhaa

There is a very pervasive web of falsehoods that the soul-maker must wake from in order to start on her path.  These are the lies of the mad world, the system of delusion maintained by human drama and ignorance.  “The mad world” is a short-hand name for all the misconceptions and confusions which lead us to create a world of cruel competition and exaggerated scarcity, a world where profit is considered to be more important that human need. The mad world is a condition in which we're desperately trying to control ourselves, other people, and all the factors which surround us out of an intense survival anxiety.  It’s a world in which technology and science, surveillance and laws, discipline and punishment are used to maximum effect in order to produce a very tenuous and unsustainable version of security in which we're not only not actually safe, but we're also bored and depressed. The mad world is the result of a severe lack of imagination, a dearth of the visionary poet’s perception that reveals the underlying flow uniting all phenomenon.

 

A fundamental lie of the mad world, and one which the soul-maker must confront early on is this: “You are who we say you are.”

 

The game of “You are who we say you are” begins at birth, when we receive our names and continues through our educations and our childhoods.  We internalize the “You are who we say you are” game and come to believe “I am who they say I am.”  We learn to believe the things about ourselves that other people tell us.  We trust the perception of our family and teachers and friends above our own.  We trust them implicitly—they seem to know more than we do, they seem to know who we are, and we believe them.

 

The trouble is that very often the people around us lack the visionary perception which would allow them to see who we truly are—resonant, pulsing, powerful and beautiful loci of awakening.  Instead, the people around us see only their own perception of us, a perception influenced and distorted by a million different factors, but mostly conditioned by the limits of who they believe themselves to be.

 

Playing the “I am who they say I am” game usually goes fine until we start to notice that sometimes it hurts to believe that we are who they say we are.

 

The soul-maker embarks on her journey when she decides to absolutely stop playing the “I am who they say I am” game and radically reclaims her right to define her own identity.  This decision constitutes a crossing of a major threshold.  It takes her beyond the pale of the ordinary social world.  It’s a decision which is easy to say but much more difficult to carry out.  It launches the poet into a vulnerable, liminal state wherein she lacks an identity dictated by others and does not yet possess a fully formed identity of her own making.  This state of vulnerability can be intensely disorienting and uncomfortable.  We tend to cling to our identification with whatever we’ve been told about ourselves, because any identity is more secure than uncertainty, namelessness, spaciousness, and not knowing.  Yet those are the difficulties we need to embrace as we set out.  We need to deny and strip away any limited notions about ourselves that we may carry.

 

Emily Dickinson enacted her decision to stop playing the “I am who they say I am” game in the following lyric:

 

I’m ceded – I’ve stopped being Their’s –

The name They dropped opon my face

With water, in the country church

Is finished using, now,

And They can put it with my Dolls,

My childhood, and the string of spools,

I’ve finished threading – too –

 

Baptized, before, without the choice,

But this time, consciously, Of Grace –

Unto supremest name –

Called to my Full – the Crescent dropped –

Existence’s whole Arc, filled up,

With one – small Diadem –

 

My second Rank – too small the first –

Crowned – Crowing – on my Father’s breast –

A half unconscious Queen –

But this time – Adequate – Erect,

With Will to choose,

Or to reject,

And I choose, just a Crown –

(Franklin 353)

 

What would it mean for you to cede yourself from the definitions placed upon you by your family, your local culture? What would it feel like? What could you experience in yourself once removed from the name, identity, and limits given to you by others?

 

Begin to experiment with making the decision within yourself to “cede,” to “stop being theirs.”  What would hold you back from stepping outside your socially defined identity? What do you still hope to gain from it? Keep practicing your decision—writing it, saying it, thinking it.  This takes focus and repetition, energy and concentration to do.  You won’t accomplish it in just one sitting.  It’s a decision to be made again and again, until it hits the core of you.

 

Posted on August 4, 2011 and filed under Uncategorized.

Become a Visionary

Dear Reader, Do you demure from expressing yourself creatively? Do you insist that you don't have the time or money to acquire the necessary training, skills, and materials requisite to being an artist?

Do you bemoan that whatever kind of work you do isn't fashionable, isn't desired, isn't wanted by the world? Is your name Carolyn Elliott? Because I do all that stuff, every day.

Ever since I was old enough to realize I could get attention with my artistic stylings I've been hobbled by chains of perfectionism and caring-what-others-think tempered in the hands of demonic smithys under the mighty mountain forgery of Self-Doubt.  It's a painful condition. But I'm getting over myself, in large part thanks to inspiration from visionary art.

The Art that Forgets Its Name

What's visionary art? According to the American Visionary Art Museum in Baltimore, the term

refers to art produced by self-taught individuals, usually without formal training, whose works arise from an innate personal vision that revels foremost in the creative act itself." In short, visionary art begins by listening to the inner voices of the soul, and often may not even be thought of as 'art' by its creator.

So visionary art, much of which is so freakin' cool it makes me quiver (check out that mosaic mirrored egg!), is made by people who lack formal artistic training.  Indeed, it's very often made by people who are in some way marginalized by society and who lack financial resources. Hmmm.  As I consider the vast wonder of things made by self-taught and under-advantaged creators, I begin to seriously lose my excuses for not making more stuff myself.

The thing which really fascinates me about visionary art though, is that its creators often don't even consider it to be art. They just think of it as a necessary expression of their intuition. The section on the American Visionary Art Museum's website which describes the difference between traditional folk art and visionary art goes into more detail on this matter, and I find it so compelling that I have to share it with you:

The essential difference between the two [folk artists and visionary artists], though both may at times use similar materials and methods, is that visionary artists don't listen to anyone else's traditions. They invent their own. They hear their own inner voice so resoundingly that they may not even think of what they do as 'art.' Dubuffet's beloved Art Brut Collections, formed exclusively from the "raw art" creations of non-artists, such as street people, hermits, factory workers, housewives and psychic mediums, motivated him to say: "Art is at its best when it forgets its very name." It is this listening to one's inner voice with such focused attention that contributes to the unusually large number of visionary art works -many of which took decades to create. Yet there are still common threads. The most common theme of visionary artists worldwide is the backyard recreation of the Garden of Eden and other utopian visions -quite literally building heaven on earth.

On reflection, I think I have to agree with Mr. Dubuffet that "Art is at its best when it forgets its very name." I've spent many hours in fine art museums in America and Europe. I volunteered for years at the Carnegie Art Museum and the Andy Warhol Museum. And yet nothing that I've seen in the fine art category grips me as much as art brut.

And isn't it wild that the most common theme of this work is the recreation of the Garden of Eden? Knowing this reminds me of the trippy aboriginal greatness of Womb With Three Births, a work produced by two of my favorite (largely self-taught) geniuses, Sigh Meltingstar and Eliza Bishop, for a show I curated this past summer at the International Children's Gallery on Penn Avenue in Pittsburgh.

When I ponder the truth that art is best when it forgets its name, I get a little sad.  I remember all the times I forced myself to do something serious with words or paint or clay because I was indeed aiming to make "art." In my self-imposed seriousness, I've drained most all of the fun out of creating and often ended up with stuff that induced yawns rather than yelps of joy.

A few weeks ago I decided to surrender my conditioned desire to make "art" and instead relax into my authentic preference to produce cool stuff in accordance with the dictates of my inner voice and share it with others by whatever means necessary.

So far, the results have been really fun-- I've started making songs with my friend Jane for our freak folk project and I wrote and performed my first few minutes of stand up comedy.

In the coming days I'll be sharing thoughts and prompts on making the transition from stifled-by-seriousness to trembling-visionary-glitter-bombness.

Love,

Carolyn

 

Image Credit: Picture by LollyKnit of a sculpture in the American Visionary Art Museum, borrowed from Flickr under Creative Commons licensing.

How to Desire

Dear Reader,

Let’s work on getting in touch with what we want. It’s our first step in the March Adventure. Write “Stuff I Really, Really Want” and list 25 items, everything from grand abstract achievements to the most paltry of household goods. Got it? Good, now if you have a mind whose automatic setting is anything like mine, you will now be thinking “I won’t do that, it’s pointless.”

The Depths of Disbelieving

My mind tells me it’s pointless to bring to the forefront of my mind all the things that I long for because, as it reports, “I won’t get them anyway.”  This automatic setting of pessimism is a strategy I learned in childhood to protect myself from the wrenching disappointment of missing out on things I really, really wanted. This was a great strategy when I was five and my acknowledgment of my impotence was actually spot on— back then I couldn’t read or write, I was 3 feet tall with limited motor skills, and I didn’t even have the right to vote! Yes, I was an illiterate, disenfranchised little person. Things were bleak back then. But look how far I’ve come!

I’m now (like you, if you’re reading this) in full possession of literacy, motor skills, and voting rights. You’re no longer limited by your parents’ arbitrary and tyrannical decisions regarding bedtime and dessert.

The Power of Innocent Longing

Frankly, you’re empowered and it’s time to start recognizing that. The “I won’t get them anyway” belief that your mind espouses is outdated. Since you’re big and literate now your odds of attaining most of your desires are pretty darn good.

Even if your life does indeed turn out to be one long dreary European film, if you go through it holding the belief all the while that you “won’t get them anyway” (your desires) your life will be a completely unwatchable long dreary European film.  Why? Because heroes and heroines desire stuff.  They go out and pursue their desires through various means. They learn stuff along the way.  Even if they completely fail to get what they set out to attain at the outset, the very act of valiantly, innocently, even somewhat stupidly, reaching to fulfill their desire puts forces in motion that show them valuable things and connect them to fascinating people.

Yes, that’s right. I’m getting all Joseph Campbell on your ass. This March Adventure is a hero / heroine’s journey.  I know, it’s terribly unoriginal of me. But that’s because it’s also just plain true.  I think Joseph Campbell may have missed some of the finer points regarding the heroine’s journey (I’ll be happy to discuss this at some point) but all in all, he was really right about the underlying mythic structures that span across time and culture, and which have things to tell us (Poetic Truths!) about the magic ways that life works.

The Call to Adventure

The first leg of the hero / heroine’s journey is the Call to Adventure.  Maybe you have not lately had a recurring prophetic dream calling you to travel to a strange land in search of hidden treasure.  That doesn’t mean you don’t have a Call to Adventure! Our longings and desires are our Call to Adventure.  They’re the stirrings that prompt us to undertake a course of action that will change us and our understanding of the world for the better. Some of them more so than others. And of course, it matters how we go about pursuing those desires. And also, there are certainly dragons to slay along the way. But we’ll worry about sorting all that out later. For now, get started with your list!

My List

To encourage you in coming up with your List of 25 Things you Desire, I figured I’d show you mine in all its random, jumbled glory:

1. A fireplace

2. A claw foot bath tub.

3. To publish an awesome self-help book.

4. To record a freak folk album.

5. To perform a stand-up act.

6. To be rich, having absolutely gazillions of gold coins to swim in.

7. To be struck enlightened like Byron KatieEckhart Tolle, and Jan Frazier.

8. To be very very glittery, like David Bowie circa the Ziggy Stardust era.

9. To finish my PhD.

10. To learn to play the guitar and write songs.

11. A super-flashy glam rock wedding.

12. New clothes for spring and summer.

13. Speaking engagements around town.

14. To make some videos for youtube, like my friend Kevin, who is super-cool.

15. The Nobel Prize in Literature

16. A lot of rainbow colored silk scarves.

17. An awesome house in the woods somewhere with giant fireplaces and clawfoot tubs.

18. A pug puppy.

19. My poetry books published.

20. A mind-blowing flower garden.

21. A gypsy caravan that is so rad I can hardly stand it.

22. To make and sell incredibly awesome tote bags.

23. To write a didactic novel like The Alchemist.

24. To make meditation cds / podcasts.

25. A house that looks like a Lisa Frank sticker sheet exploded all over it, in a really good way.

4 Tools to Awesome Your Life

Dear Reader, A few of my friends and I are having an adventure this March. I hope you’ll join us. We’re having an adventure in our own lives. We’re going to turn up the heat in our existence and fling off some brighter sparks. This is what we’ll do:

1. Truth and Beauty Pages

Each morning, first thing, we’ll write four pages in response to the question: “What’s true in my life? And what’s beautiful?”  I’ve been writing Truth and Beauty Pages on and off for years now. Whenever I do it, things go better— I’m more in touch with my life, with who I am, and with what I need to do (that’s the truth part) and I’m more sensitive to the glorious glories all around me (that’s the beauty part).  I’ve been doing it for the past two weeks and I can feel myself coming alive in a thousand surprising ways— I can’t believe I had stopped for so long!

Actually, let revise what I said in the first paragraph— it’s not just that things get better when I write my Truth and Beauty pages— it’s that Truth and Beauty pages have literally kept me alive at some points in my life. When I was young and in a really bleak situation, living with an older guy who lied to me and abused me on a daily basis, writing Truth and Beauty pages was the only thing that kept me sane and connected with my soul.

Writing each day about the reality of my situation (it sucked SO much) and about the beauty that I saw in myself, others, and the world served the dual purpose of both making me face the facts without denial, minimization, or

rationalization (three ugly devils who like to keep me stuck!) and also letting me dream about what could be possible. This gave me enough strength to eventually leave that man and build the awesome existence I currently enjoy.

Now that I’m quite a bit saner and about seventy trillion times happier, writing Truth and Beauty Pages continues to serve me because… as it turns out, there’s always more to discover when it comes to these primary spiritual principles. They’re no longer dramatically rescuing me from abusive scenarios, but they are bringing the much needed oxygen of consciousness to my experience— thus stoking the flames.

2. Throbbing, Extra-Rational Optimism

As every life-coach new-agey metaphysical finger lickin’ person out there will tell you (and I, friends, am no exception) you have to vividly imagine your life working out in a way that will utterly rock your socks if you want your socks to end up rocked. The reason everyone will tell you this is because they are kind and good and it, ladies and gentlemen, is true.

How do I know it’s true? Well, that’s a good story. I was once in a completely yucky state with my dating life.  I could only seem to get interested in and attracted to guys who would lie to me and or harm me in some fashion (see above instance) and every “romantic” interaction I had was actually a disaster.  I overcame this situation in part by practicing the brilliant, exceptionally well-written instructions in Amy Spencer’s life-altering book, Meeting Your Half Orange: An Utterly Upbeat Guide to Using Dating Optimism to Find Your Perfect Match. If you have any trouble finding the right person at all, I highly beg you (notice: I am not highly recommending and I am not begging— I am highly begging) that you purchase and read and practice this book.

I practiced the kind of optimism that Spencer so wittily describes— and that optimism gave me the power to fearlessly examine my previous patterns and change my fundamental false beliefs about who I am and what I deserve… which resulted in me cosmically attracting to myself my now-boyfriend, Dey, who I will put up against any dude you got in the “most phenomenally awesome lover and friend and human being” contest that we will organize and hold next year.

This experience— of going from a situation being so awful for such a long time (my romantic sorrows, oh, they were manifold!) to being so flippin’ great that I gush at every one endlessly about it— has taught me that yes, Amy Spencer and everyone else is right. Optimism works.

And not lazy optimism. Not, “Oh, whatever, yeah, that could happen” optimism.  I mean balls-to-the-wall, hoping-with-all-my-heart, completely exposed and vulnerable optimism.

I call it throbbing optimism, because when you’re really doing it (and more about how-to soon) your whole body pulses. It feels great.

I call it extra-rational optimism because it rationality and reason are way over-rated. The reasoning mind (at least mine) only knows what was true in the past, and makes deductions out of that.  It says that any hope that something truly different and way more better could happen is “irrational.” Well, I say it is NOT “irrational” — it is extra-rational.  It exceeds reason. It exceeds the known. It’s willing to accept the unknown— and that unknown is super-neat.

3. Hops

Hops are “hopeful optimistic practices.”  Yes, you’re right. That’s redundant.  It is so redundant because guess what? Our habitual negativity and existential dread is incredibly redundant.  So the stuff that combats it has got to be the same way. Hops are kind of like leaps of faith. Except they’re not leaps— because leaps are big and really really hard.  Hops are— you know, just hops. They’re fun. Less like soaring across a rocky gulch and more like bouncing— as bunnies bounce.  So you see, cadbury candy eggs.  No, wait. Cadbury candy eggs was not my point.

My point is this— we need each day to take little actions that are in line with the dreams of our Throbbing, Extra-rational Optimism.  These little actions must also be fun.  I don’t mean big actions. I don’t mean stuff that feels like a drag. I just mean little hip hops that are on the trail.

Hops are much, much easier to do, by the way, when you are indeed practicing your Throbbing, Extra-rational Optimism— because that stuff has some oomph in it, and provides inspirational energy that we might otherwise lack.

When I was practicing my dating optimism a la Amy Spencer, my hops were these: sifting through okcupid profiles, looking for guys I liked; getting dressed up all fancy and going to parties that sounded cool.  That’s it. So you see, these hops were not only not tough— they were also fun.

Here’s the thing though: had I not been practicing my Throbbing, Extra-rational Optimism, I totally would have talked myself out of those hops. “What’s the point at looking at okcupid? I’ve been on that stupid site for years and I haven’t met anyone I really liked who really liked me.” “Go to the Beaux Arts Ball? But

getting a costume together would take so much energy. Better to just stay home and look at LOLcats.”

So what happened due to my hops? Well, at the Beaux Arts Ball I dressed as my true self, Aphrodite, the Greek Goddess of Love, and this hot French guy asked me out while we were standing in a glorious topiary garden. He took me out on fancy dates to the theater and classy restaurants— which was a great time.  Stuff with the French dude did not ultimately work out, but it sure did help bolster my self-esteem which had been trampled by my years of misadventures— and weeks later, while trolling okcupid, I came across the profile of an astoundingly gorgeous Indian man who looked just like the astoundingly gorgeous Indian man I’d been seeing repeatedly in my (romantic, tender, luscious) night-time dreams. Hmmmmmm.  Well, that was Dey and that DID work out.

So yeah man— hops.

Currently, my Throbbing, Extra-Rational Optimistic dream is to become an internationally-known speaker, spiritual self-help author, workshop-leader, and life advisor (I would say “life coach” but I really just hate the word “coach”… it makes me think of coaches).

It occurred to me that writing a blog in which I share with the world what I know about making life richer would be a fun, not-difficult action that would align with my dream. So. Here I am. Hop! Hop! Hop!

4. 5 Minutes Towards Beauty

Every day we’ll spend five minutes making something beautiful. A painting, a story, a song, a poem, a cake, a comedy routine, a comic strip.  What you make doesn’t need to be “beautiful” in the “wow, that’s pretty” sense. It’s more that it’s beautiful in that it’s revealing something real through your craft— whatever that craft is. Remember, truth IS beauty. Honesty— even difficult to look-at-stuff— is also beautiful.  What I’m saying is, just because your comic strip is a vividly rendered piece about university professors who melt into nauseating, hairy gremlins when deprived of coffee doesn’t mean it can’t count as your “something beautiful”— because it’s true, so true, you see.

Devoting 5 minutes a day to making something beautiful has the powerful effect of putting you in alignment with the creative force of the universe— which, as you may notice, makes something (or, arguably, everything) beautiful every day.

Also, if you don’t yet have enough skills in a particular area to sit down and “make something beautiful” right then and there— that’s absolutely fine. Practicing and playing around counts too, as long as that practice is towardsthe beautiful.  For example— I’m just learning to play guitar right now (through the good grace of my friends who are so generous with their time!) and I can’t yet just sit down and write “Hallelujah.” Heck, I can’t even play “Hallelujah.” I’m working on making the transition from the C chord to the G chord. But that counts!

Okay, so that’s what we’ll be up to for the month of March.  So I hope you’ll join in! Feel free to write in questions to me under the “Ask me anything” tab up top.

Love,

Carolyn