An artist shares her experiences on creatively developing, tending to and nurturing her garden as spiritual sanctuary for herself, her friends and family. Gail Allen contributes her thoughts on creating a sacred space as an oasis for soothing your soul in today's busy world, enticing your senses and and fostering your own personal growth

Thursday, November 20, 2008

"When Sitting, Leap Like a Tiger."

"When Sitting, Leap Like a Tiger" are words that were literally given to me, by a dear friend and mentor, over twenty eight years ago. In Korean the name is Yong Maeng Jong Jin which translates to the aforementioned phrase. He said nothing else about it at the time. Just passed t hese written words to me at the end of a conversation. I was perplexed as to what it meant. Too young perhaps to realize the gift he had given me. Never the less, it had started me on a path that I am very thankful for, which has brought me to this moment in time. Meditation is key to my creativity and the path it takes me on.
As I work on my current painting, "The Flow of Creativity", I am reflecting on the many forms of meditation and spirituality that I have studied, that each culture practices and always use the information garnered in my paintings in some way. I am intrigued by the marriage of the ancient and the future. I try to keep my work original, while weaving in symbols, mythology, metaphors and motifs that are part of the history of this planet. As the dynamic interest in our world as "one world" takes hold, and the pendulum swings us back to a place of more respect for nature and our universe, these ancient symbols and teachings are more important to revive. If we are to reach some sort of relative balance from the overwhelmingly chaotic lifestyle we have created, we must incorporate these ancient teachings into our future. Perhaps for me, the flow of creativity is best defined as meditation. In my life and my work ,I try to to keep these three elements as my guide: great faith, great courage and great questioning.

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