I first heard of The Artist’s Way by Julia Cameron several years ago when I learned it was required reading for my dance school. I got the book, read it, and worked through it…sort of. Right around that time in my life I was going through some major transitions and never really gave it the attention it probably deserved. Then I moved out-of-state and, well, the book went in a box.
Now at a place in my life where I will hopefully be in one location for longer than it takes me to memorize the way to the grocery store, I’ve taken the book out of the box and I’m giving it another go.
Starting from the premise that art is a spiritual pursuit, Cameron guides the participant through a twelve week journey of self-exploration, in which, supposedly, you remove artistic blocks and recover your creative self.
I can’t imagine there exists a single person who hasn’t at some point felt compelled to create, while simultaneously telling themselves they lacked the innate talent to do so, that it’s a luxury, that it’s too late to begin, they don’t have time, or that it’s not sensible and will leave them in financial ruin. This book is for anyone who has ever put their creativity on the shelf, and addresses the core blocks of why we do that and how we can heal it.
Interested? Me too.
After finishing week one of the course I find myself keenly interested in sharing my progress as I go. Maybe by doing so, someone else will be inspired to dig deep and go on a creative journey. For now, check out the following principles which Cameron says can be the foundation for our creative recovery and discovery:
1. Creativity is the natural order of life. Life is energy: pure creative energy.
2. There is an underlying, in-dwelling creative force infusing all of life — including ourselves.
3. When we open ourselves to our creativity, we open ourselves to the creator’s creativity within us and our lives.
4. We are, ourselves, creations. And we, in turn, are meant to continue creativity by being creative ourselves.
5. Creativity is God’s gift to us. Using our creativity is our gift back to God.
6. The refusal to be creative is self-will and is counter to our true nature.
7. When we open ourselves to exploring our creativity, we open ourselves to God: good orderly direction.
8. As we open our creative channel to the creator, many gentle but powerful changes are to be expected.
9. It is safe to open ourselves up to greater and greater creativity.
10. Our creative dreams and yearnings come from a divine source. As we move toward our dreams, we move toward our divinity.