Art and Practice as Refuge
It's a hectic world out there. And today things seem even darker and more out of control. But what better anchor to our security and sanity than an ongoing spiritual practice? And even more so for someone who is involved in the arts of some type.
I know that for me, when I feel lost or drifting, writing these words, or making music, connects me to something more. Even in the darkest of spaces there is the light of my art. In one way, writing these blog posts is a meditation. I don't just type out the words in a mechanical matter. I feel the keys under my fingers. I feel the weight of the words I'm writing. I feel the words wrap themselves around me. Often I get lost and lose track of man made time. I shift into no time.
A spiritual practice can be an island, a place where opening to uncertainty and doubt can lead us to a refuge of truth. — Joan Halifax, The Lucky Dark
Fushimi Inari Taisha, Kyoto, Japan. Photo © Matt Bettine
Writing is my island, it's my peace, it's my refuge. When I'm in my space, nothing else exists. I am at one with all and nothing at the same time. I write for everyone, and no one. But most of all, I write for me. There is satisfaction in jumping into the word jumble and making sense out of thoughts and ideas. There is satisfaction in bringing meaning and understanding to these shapes we use to transfer and process information.
It's much the same with music. I can get lost for hours in the vibrations. They bring me to other spaces. They fill my head with wonder and my heart with peace. My writing and my music are my meditations. They are my spiritual practices, just as someone would go to church or temple. I hold my temple within and take it with me wherever I go, wherever my art goes.
This is my Spiritual Practice.