Life is sacred, when we engage with it as sacred. Every leaf, every speck is full of vibrance–the Spirit of Life is everywhere. I painted this thinking of my brother Ken and his richly poetic way of weaving words and images and stories into visions of humorous and life-enhacing awareness. He has inspired me and many to recognize the living spirit in my surroundings.
The point of change, the moment of mercy comes when I finally ask, “What is it I’m supposed to learn here?” Some situations, goals or thoughts are held hostage by the ego to the point where no shift seems possible. I had a client recently who said she’d been having a terrible streak spanning many years, and felt cursed. We all relate to that feeling, but what is it that shifts us out of that? I don’t believe we’re cursed, even in bad times because I believe every moment holds the Light in it, but there can be very difficult times in our lives. I told this client that I’d found in my own suffering times that there is no shift out of misery until I surrender and ask, “What is it I’m supposed to learn in this situation?” It’s like looking up at the sky and surrendering, waving a white flag as big as the Milky Way, and the ego can’t stand it! This “breaking point” does not come easily, the ego refuses to be put in a position to have to “learn”–it thinks it already knows everything, and it asserts itself as to what it wants with great authority. “I know what is best for you,” ego seems to say. But when things are sorrowful, painful, forced or simply dysfunctional, it is a good moment when that ego has to surrender and the humble question of what should be learned arises from within. Tears may follow, but the good kind.
If you are knowledgable about plants, herbs, flowers, etc and their medicinal or nourishing qualities, I wish you’d write a book EDIBLE WEEDS–unless–has this been done before? A user-friendly guide with images would be great!
Pieces of Sky/Gesso, acrylic on paper Elaine Clayton copyright 2013
Just because you don’t have something, doesn’t mean it isn’t “yours”. We don’t have to own everything we love, in fact, just loving and appreciating something is often motivating and inspiring. Edgar Cayce made the very empowering of point of reminding us to stay aligned with our ideals, and I have found that acknowledging what we love and appreciate, is in essence, a way to align with our soul’s purpose. For example, during a phase of moving around in rentals that didn’t reflect any of my personal ideals, I forgot to have that soul-aligning conversation with myself about the kinds of houses I idealize. I just didn’t focus on the material at all, and we thrived as a family during that non-materialistic phase of being. After several years of not even thinking of what kind of house I truly love, I was struck by the ideals I hold, and told my husband I love solar houses. Not long after that, we found a place we now call home and are no longer roaming. It is not a solar house, but is filled with sunlight and makes us happy. One day it may have solar panels. The point wasn’t that I have exactly the thing I love, but just to know what I love and be fulfilled just loving the idea of it. An African American psychic I met once while in my early 20′s (she was a corporate psychic working for a multi-million dollar West Coast corporation) held my hand and said, “Just because you don’t have it doesn’t mean it isn’t yours.” She went on to explain basically what Cayce said, that to love something makes it “yours” on a spiritual level, because you appreciate and value it. I notice, too, that not being in the “I must have!” frenzy of feeling lacking in some way truly does bring peace. I listen to Eldon Taylor’s InnerTalk cds and one of my favorite is the 23rd Psalm, “The Lord is my Shepherd, there is nothing I shall want,” is a line that really, when I feel that calm inside, that there is nothing I must have right now, is the best feeling ever. At home when any of us get into that frenzy of “I must have”, we hiss and slither around and say, “Precious” like Gollum in Lord of the Rings. I’d rather own a love for something than to be owned by that something.
Into the Moon, Inward Journey Elaine Clayton copyright 2013
On earth, we learn in increments of time and space. We have a linear concept of life and life’s lessons (“first this happened, then that and now….”). And yet what once happened is no more than a shadow we revisit inwardly, a cinematic recording. We still learn from those recordings by remembering them, playing them in our minds, as we create our life forward. Yet love is not subject to time, love is present, forever, within ourselves and everyone and everything around us. Enlightenment is love entering our interactions; we exist in 3-D opportunities that, from moment-to-moment, become recorded “spiritual films” of our experiences. When love is ignored or made absent by our choices or the free will of others, we know it because it is a glimmer of hell. I want to be in that love that is pure light, and each situation in life gives me a chance to see where I still have shadows within.
A recent Spirit Painting commission Elaine Clayton copyright 2013
In this newly presented Spirit Painting commissioned a few months ago, a Tree Spirit is also a Spirit of the Air and Light. There is wind, sun, and water, too. The person who this was created for has an extremely rich sensitivity to nature and to the hidden feelings and meanings in her surroundings. I felt that she has the ability to tune into nature and almost blend into it, that she is of the forest and the sunlight, they sky and water. Working on it was a wonderful little journey for me. I have to let these paintings talk to me, so sometimes they take a while to fully emerge. With this one, I had to include a snake although at first it bothered me somewhat. I personally did not want to put a snake in, but the meditation guided me to, so I trusted that. Interestingly, shortly before presenting this painting to the client, she talked quite a lot about snake symbolism, and she had no idea I had felt guided to include one in her painting. That made me realize I truly have to trust the process, trust messages that arrive. I start each painting asking for spiritual, intuitive guidance. These paintings are prayers and are meant to heal and support, to activate the spiritual sense of wonder for the one who commissioned them. And in that person’s honor, they are meant to do the same for anyone who gazes upon them.
Once a few years ago, I was dreaming (just before waking up at dawn) and was hovering over some rocks and plants. I had the complete sensation of being not just one with everything, but of BEING everything. The feeling was as if in an instance, but a forever kind of feeling. I can’t really explain it, but I felt I was not limited to this body, I was everywhere all at once. Now that it’s spring, I love walking around outside and trying to feel myself blend in with everything, the trees, the leaves, the sky. The blurry leaves shimmering in the distance, the rocks and even the air. When I do this I feel a kind of “zing” that is elating and for a moment I almost have that “I am everything, everywhere” feeling again.
Spirit Painting for J.R. 2013 copyright Elaine Clayton www.illuminara.com
This is a recent Spirit Painting commission that had a powerful synchronistic happening connected with it. I noted for the client that there is a “cloud bird”—a dove flying overhead in her Spirit Painting, and I knew inwardly while meditating and painting that this bird had to be in the painting, even if I did not exactly know why. This bird, like the other elements in the painting are what arrived into my consciousness while meditating specifically on behalf of the one who commissioned the piece. AMAZINGLY, after she received the Spirit Painting, a white dove visited her while she worked in her garden!!! She said that the dove watched her tend to her plants from very close by, and she and others were actually able to hold this dove in their hands. I felt this was an enormously important synchronicity, and a truly wonderful event because, how often after having a dove painted for you, does a dove come visit for a while?
This is a repost of an illuminara.com post I put up in 2012. In this meditation/astral vision (I was fully conscious and felt I was being “instructed” or shown important things) I saw a terrible explosion, or rather the smoke plumes following a fire or explosion. The image in the right at top is a small watercolor and ink sketch I made of the vision. There were explosions in an open plains area. I’m originally from Texas so I know the feeling of standing on land that is so wide and so flat, you can see for miles beyond. In this vision, there were explosions far in the horizon but clearly visible and clearly very momentous and dire. I thought of it when I heard about the West, Texas explosion. In the vision, however, there were 3 plumes of smoke, not just one and I am not sure why. The crater image on the top left of this meditation sketch reminds me of all the reports of sinkholes we see lately. This crater like opening was full of sand, so I felt it was a beach area or coastal kind of event. I felt like I could intensely see each grain of sand (this kind of sharpness of vision in astral meditations is often experienced). And as far as undersea volcanoes or quakes, seen at the bottom, I am open to learning what this may mean. I do not expect what I see in visions to always or necessarily ever come true, I just try to have the courage to share what comes to me if it feels especially sharp, clear and gripping. I’m happy if anything scary does not come true, of course. I think we all have an ability to perceive precognitive information, it is only a matter of paying attention and writing or drawing what comes. These may just as often be wonderful, beautiful visions as they may be dire and worrisome in nature. I do not like to spread negativity or fear, but acknowledging difficulties or challenges is a positive and caring approach in that we can be prepared and have time to shore up our resolve to love and flourish even amidst the hardships of earth-life.
This is number 19 in my well-worn deck, Illuminara Intuitive Journal with Cards.
I painted this because I love clouds, and because this is a scene from my first decade of life on earth in the Panhandle of Texas. But what this card means to me doesn’t matter as much as it means to you, when you look at it.
In a recent intuitive-psychic reading, a client drew this card during the session. He identified with the cloud. “I’m the cloud,” he said, “and I worry about the effect I have on others.” This client has a lot of responsibilities and is reviewing his life anew, so he is going over life and his choices. He worries he casts shadows, or feels he is responsible for all his employees in ways that may be ominous in their lives. So for him, this card represents his desire to gather up and fully comprehend his life in terms of how his choices effect others.
Another client felt that the house below the cloud represented isolation of some kind, but with the knowledge that the sky is full and rich, dreams abound and potential can be fulfilled, no matter what.