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Author Topic: Creativity and your faith  (Read 7690 times)
dragonfaerie
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« Reply #15: March 23, 2007, 07:43:46 pm »

How does creativity play a role in your religion?  Has your creativity changed because of your religion?  Or your religion from your creativity?

Is there any interplay at all?

I think my religion, and my devotion to Brigit, gives my creativity direction. I'm working with papercrafts to make some interesting (if basic) pagan art, and I just joined a list for pagan yarn crafts. I also write, though it's been more the creative non-fiction essay sort than poetry these days. I used to write poetry and just got very self-conscious about it. I need to get back in touch with that side of me.

Brigit, though, she can be pushy. The idea for my latest project (which I might try to scan in sometime) popped into my head at work while I was doodling, and didn't let me go for several days, until I had bought the supplies to make the thing. Sometimes I really do have to fight with her to let me attend to the mundane when it needs to be attended to.

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« Reply #16: March 29, 2007, 09:42:09 am »

I remember that even when I first started studying mythology (around age 11), I drew pictures of the Gods (not limited to the Greek ones).  In my h.s. art classes, the bulk of my work focused on themes and characters from the myths.  Now that I'm a writer, the Gods have popped up in my stories.  So far, Hekate has appeared in my vampire novels and will probably be featured in the witch novels that are in the works.  As I write more, I'm thinking that more Gods are going to be featured.
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« Reply #17: April 10, 2007, 10:14:24 am »


And then, I learned to dance again, as I had before that first show, before I stepped out onto the stage and heard the clink of coins in baskets on the tables.  I remembered what drew me into the dance to begin with.  Sheer unadulterated pleasure in my own body.

Even when you're performing giving your dance as a "gift" to the audience, it is all consuming.  After all, you have to feel your gift is worth giving.  Then you spends hours, days, and weeks on end perfecting it in a rather OCD sort of way.  Then you start to anticipate what kind of gift would your audience like the best?  What song?  What moves will bring about the most reaction, and the best reactions.

That's why I was good.  I tailored to the trends, the classics, the event - a dancers dancer.  Then I interpreted and made each my own.  I was putting about 60 hours a week into dance.  I became a caricature of myself.

I started there, but found out very quickly, that even if you dance for all the right reasons, there are people who would use you for everything your worth to bolster their own causes.  I got caught up in 'dance scene' wars, unknowingly even, by walking in thinking that there must be someone in the whole mess who "played fair" or didn't go in for the backbiting.  The ones who hang in there the longest aren't the most talented, or the best dancers, but those who accumulate power over others, and are the most determined to hold on regardless of how many they hurt, or how many hurt them.  Eventually it becomes your whole life. 

Pretty much every professional dancer I've come across either has a spouse who has accepted second chair to dance, has had multiple divorces because they refuse to acknowledge that dance has to be #1, or is holding on single because they know they don't have space in their lives for a relationship with anything besides dance.  The only relationships I've seen work were between a sound technician and a dancer, a photographer and a dancer and a restaurant owner and a dancer - sometimes a dancer and a dancer if one of them acknowledges the other as being "better" - a deliberate power imbalance.

I chased this for 6 years.  The last 3 were the most successful career wise, but the most destructive.  I was going to *unite the dance scene* All the backbiters would learn from my stunning example of do everything you can for anyone/ everyone who asks, dance every chance you get, regardless of compensation.  If there is one person in the restaurant, then make sure they are getting the best show of their lives.  Be nice to everyone - even if you hate them, and you know they hate you.

The need to be needed slips in in a very sneaky way.  It's twines up through the rest of it, grows symbiotically  and leaves you having to kill the garden to save the house.

Because I've been through the industry side of dance, it's something that I don't think I could ever go back to.  Every road leads to either teaching or performing.  If I ever tried it again, I have a feeling it would happen even faster.

Right now I see a "good" teacher in dance as one who shields even their most enthusiastic students from what the industry side of dance is.  Keeps them from performing at anything besides a private class party.  Most new dancers would find that to be an outrage, because it's like being a debutante.  You want to go to parties, dance, have fun and meet people; but as you get deeper and deeper into that, at some point a choice has to be made.

Unless you're willing to structure your entire life around it, at cost of everything else, there is no life in dance.

I used to think you could dance 'for yourself' and 'for an audience' at the same time, but I don't believe it.  Once your audience starts to push you, what you want becomes a moot point.  You either have to choose to work for the audience at that point, validated by how nice it is to have an audience, or to ignore the wants of the audience and dance for yourself.  The two can live together briefly, but because audiences are so demanding, it's very easy to loose yourself.
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« Reply #18: April 10, 2007, 10:35:30 am »

I used to think you could dance 'for yourself' and 'for an audience' at the same time, but I don't believe it.  Once your audience starts to push you, what you want becomes a moot point.  You either have to choose to work for the audience at that point, validated by how nice it is to have an audience, or to ignore the wants of the audience and dance for yourself.  The two can live together briefly, but because audiences are so demanding, it's very easy to loose yourself.

Indeed, it is.  I'll also never go back to dancing professionally in any manner.  I can't do it anymore.  I can't allow myself to be that person I become when I do.  I don't like that me.  That me has no life outside of dance, no room for anything or anyone in my life that isn't a part of dance. 

So, I dance in my living room and at festivals.  I dance for myself, and the audience isn't a part of it at all and never will be again. 
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« Reply #19: April 10, 2007, 11:36:39 am »


So, I dance in my living room and at festivals.  I dance for myself, and the audience isn't a part of it at all and never will be again. 

I'm not there yet.  I still hold an absolute wall because I don't trust myself not to want to go back.  I lived for nothing but the audience for a while.  It's an addiction. 

I'm coming to the point where I can watch dancing with the stars without flipping the channel, bouncing around like a manic head case, or becoming annoyed at unrelated things out of jealousy, but I'm not there yet. 

Occasionally I'll watch the videos, or get overly tanked some night and e-mail friends from that time in life (only a little less than a year ago) who thankfully don't mail back.  Fortunately the people I e-mail were also my Reiki teachers, who even though we've cut off contact don't actively  (I hope) hold grudges, or at least understand why I made the choices I did. 

The rest of the dance world, like you said rolls on without me.  One less competitor to those who saw me as such.

I'm still working to get out of the shadow of what a part of me wanted to be, even though it was holding the rest of me hostage. 

I don't go here often.  Sometimes I'm still sweeping up the seed beads on the floor, and picking them out of the bottoms of my feet.  Eventually I'll have the mess picked up.  Thanks for the flashlight. It's hard to sweep in the dark.  Smiley
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I'm gonna tell my son to join a circus so that death is cheap
And games are just another way of life
And I'm gonna tell my son to be a prophet of mistakes
Because for every truth there are half a million lies
And I'm gonna lock my son up in a tower
Till he learns to let his hair down far enough to climb outside.
-LIz Pahir
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« Reply #20: April 10, 2007, 06:58:26 pm »

Well, there's been a definite change in my writing since I started.  Before I was all about black and white scenarios - where you knew who was good and who was evil; I never entertained the thought of there being more to a good story than that.  I never strayed far from that whole "living in the light" kind of thing.

Both of those territories now, are either explored or at least touched upon. I write about immortality, about people becoming demi-gods or full gods.  Even if they remain human, something about them changes.  I have my characters face things that make them reconsider their values and beliefs; sometimes they change, sometimes they can't accept something at all, and that's fine.

I lost my taste for writing poetry a while back, and though I still don't do it very often, I do it more often now.  The subject matter of those poems has expanded.  When I do write poetry, there's a hint of spirituality running through it, even if the subject has nothing to do with it.  It's the same with a lot of my stories, as a friend pointed out.  It's not distinctly pagan, but it's there.

I don't really feel any deity pushing me to write something in particular, or even draw something in particular.  Maybe it's just because they are being subtle, or maybe it's because I don't really have patrons yet.  Even if I get it in my head to map out a dance, or if the feeling comes to my during ritual, I can't really discern if it's just coming from within, or if someone is gently nudging me.  I guess it doesn't matter.
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« Reply #21: May 06, 2007, 12:08:12 pm »

How does creativity play a role in your religion?  Has your creativity changed because of your religion?  Or your religion from your creativity?

Is there any interplay at all?

Yes.  Smiley

The most obvious thing is that I do creative work for my gods.  I consider Djehuty to be very creative, and lately I've done creative work for Brighid too.  (No surprise there.)  But it goes further than that - I've made jewelry for all of the deities I'm devoted to, and a few others I'm close to.  (The lines there are a little strange lately, but that's another topic.)  I also consider the way I arrange my shrines to be a creative process.

And creativity is a huge part of my employment, so I honor my gods in that too.

My spiritual work, especially with Feri, has helped me come to a more healthy relationship with my creativity.

And then theres the stuff that's taken me a longer time to realize - that my creativity, particularly my writing, also influences my spiritual path.  I was celebrating the solstices and equinoxes (inspired by my novel) for a year before I became Pagan.  I use some texts in ritual that I originally wrote for my book.  During my hiatus from magic, a lot of my thoughts about it came out in my writing, consciously and unconsciously.  (Generally unconsciously.)
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« Reply #22: May 27, 2007, 11:40:30 am »

How does creativity play a role in your religion?  Has your creativity changed because of your religion?  Or your religion from your creativity?

Is there any interplay at all?

I've always been a creative person.  I've done so many different things since I was small from sewing to basket weaving and jewelry making.  I've taken those things that I love to do and I've incorporated ways to make them spiritual.  I can make spell-quilts, and I can make jewelry for specific purposes using the correct stones for specific purposes.  If I ever decide to make candles again, I now know that different scents can help different aspects of a person's being, and if I add my will to it also, it will have a greater outcome for the purpose used.  I think I'll always have a need to create something simply because that's the way I am, but now I feel like I'm creating things for more of a purpose than just because I can.
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« Reply #23: February 19, 2008, 02:35:48 pm »

my creativity plays a huge part in my worship. I use my art and writing as a form of devotion.

Me too. I thank my God that I'm extremely creative and know how to write because it definitely helps!

I only use other writings and ideas for inspiration; I create everything I do for worship like composing spells, rituals, blessings, chants, prayers, storytelling, music & poetry...My brain really gets a work out!
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« Reply #24: April 07, 2008, 07:58:11 am »

How does creativity play a role in your religion?  Has your creativity changed because of your religion?  Or your religion from your creativity?

Is there any interplay at all?

I think its impossible to set creativity and life apart from my religion. When I first started to make my solitary rituals to honor and worship, everything changed very quickly. I could write or draw for hours, I didn't have to motivate myself, I experienced a great flow. Now it has become more a "normal" part of who I am. I feel more open to solutions and ideas to whatever every-day stuff comes up. Anything from cooking, interior-decorating to writing or singing. I also feel my religion is refining my taste in art and music. After all, the Gods and the Goddesses deserves the best of me, so I too deserve quality reflecting that relationship.
6 months ago me and my husband moved from the city to the country where time apparently has stopped. Cheesy
 It has given me time and opportunity to align myself more deeply to nature, silence and peace, and I can sense how an urge to take up my painting comes over me more often. I'm quite eager to see where it takes me. I think creativity is the very essence of my religion, as is freedom to explore it. At this very moment it is time to work the garden we have. Its a very practical way for me to experience how I can express creativity in close contact with nature. The soil, the trees, the flowers... Its all there, perfect as it is, still I can help nature along a bit, and shape or enhance parts of the garden. I'm currently working on a spot where I can plant herbs and eatable flowers. Its like a dream actually, I feel like the Empress-card in Tarot! Smiley
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