Wednesday, October 21, 2009

New shamanic art

I have just finished a new shamanic art piece and now see that the lesson in this work is about “painting what is not there.” Water is a very strange substance to render visually. The surface is always shifting and only visible at all because of what it is reflecting in each moment. This is also how I understand the experience of the alternate realities, whether these be the dream worlds, the subtle ah ha we feel when we catch the significance of a synchronicity in time and place, or the way that metaphor and analogy can shimmer on the edge of our awareness in the moment when we grasp their larger correspondences.

Often our response to this shifting water experience of seeing and not seeing is doubt. In my shamanic mentoring practice I counsel so many people who know what they have seen, and just as quickly doubt that anything was there to be seen. I often have clients experience a shiver of insight during a Journey Oracle card reading, only to doubt that such an awakening will make any real difference in their situation.

Richard Wagamese writes so beautifully in Keeper’n Me about how we all have to search out our own truth and find our own life. How do we find what is true for ourselves when mostly what we see is a reflection? For myself, I am learning to stop asking so many questions and just watch. Watch the day, watch the weather, watch the seasons always transforming in each moment. In this painting, titled Reckoning, I watch my truth emerge in a bear skull and water and the shifting of life and death back to life.