Tag Archives: water

Recent Spirit Painting: Pearls and Spirals

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A recent Spirit Painting  Elaine Clayton copyright 2014

It is such a privilege to create these paintings for individuals, because going into meditation and painting for an another person (most of whom I have never met or spoken with) with their wellbeing and soul purpose held in my heart, makes me feel connected to something eternal. I feel sort of pulled in a certain direction as images arrive, kind of like going on an excursion without a map but sensing and feeling my way. No two are the same, of course, as each one of us are unique. Somehow, someway, the paintings and the images they depict connect to the individual’s life or hold meaning for them, it is uncanny. I can’t explain it, I just thoroughly enjoy it. There is something great going on here with life, we’re connected in mysterious ways. No matter how hard life can be, there is a stream within each of us that gives us a knowing and a feeling for others, all we have to do is be willing to “go with the flow” as they say, and we find ourselves in anyone we encounter. We find life, longing, loving, joys and sorrows. These paintings remind me to celebrate others and to remember we are One in that we are made in God’s image as powerful creators.

Mayyim Hayyim: Healing Waters

 

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Mikvah / Elaine Clayton copyright 2014

I recently immersed in the mikvah, holy and blessed water, mayyim hayyim. I did this because I love healing rituals and because I think there is something sacred about renewing the body and spirit symbolically–I needed to do that. You can do this in the ocean, I have done it before (just stating the prayer intention to heal, to be renewed as I swam).  In Judaism, it is one of the commandments, or mitzvot, to honor God’s wishes by immersing in water. (Not everyone likes some of the sexist-feeling aspects of women having to immerse after their menstruation, for example, because it implies we are “unclean”, but some of that is, I think, due to the fact that commandments were developed centuries ago when that was probably arguably good hygienic advice. Now we know menstruation is not a health threat to anyone, won’t make anyone ill or hurt anyone. And yet, Orthodox Jews still go by the ancient ways and there have been many who say it is a spiritually fulfilling practice.)

I immersed as a way to acknowledge a willingness to heal, to be blessed by God, to surrender to the will of God while consciously choosing life, choosing vitality and empowerment. For me, the mikvah is a symbolic ritual inviting me to see the opportunity to thrive in a way that aligns me with God.  I personally can’t feel I am thriving without that alignment. And I need to step out of the ordinary daily routines to make that spiritual connection.

If you are Jewish and have any experience with going to the mikvah, or strong opinions about it, I’d love to hear them. If you are Christian, you will remember in Isaiah the Pool of Siloam, and in the Christian bible, that Jesus healed people and sent them to Siloam, the Jewish mikvah. And some Jewish scholars refer to John the Baptist as “John the Mikvah Man” since he was immersing people in water to renew their spirit and connection with God.

Sun, Sea and Internal Peace

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This is a recent Spirit Painting commission  Elaine Clayton copyright 2014

In a recent Spirit Painting commission, while meditating on the one who commissioned it, I felt the sense of deep inner peace commingling with movement and change and felt I was in a realm of the possible. Memories of the past blended with future visions of good days ahead, sunshine and a return to the sea. This painting took me on some adventures, but I still felt at peace inside through the many places and changes the painting the painting took me to. I felt as though the most real adventure is the internal one, and all external experiences are strongly influenced by how we perceive them. I felt a sense of grace and love while painting this, and it made me realize that when we feel grace and love inside, we bring that out into every place we go and to every person we meet. Then that inner peace truly is in our surroundings, as we are the host or vessel of that peace.

 

Change Your DNA: Take a Bath in Healing Waters

 

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Healing Waters/ mono print  copyright Elaine Clayton 2014

My Cherokee mentor used to say that bathing in salt water (the ocean but also in salt baths) would heal you, and she said this could even change your DNA–check out this HeartMath Institute article on that http://www.heartmath.org/templates/ihm/e-newsletter/publication/2011/summer/you-can-change-your-dna.php.  If our intentions and our emotions and thoughts as well as our environment can change who we think and feel we are, as well as who we are to come to be, then meaningful healing rituals such as salt baths are a great idea. Not a new idea. Think of John the Mikveh Man (otherwise known as “John the Baptist”) and his practice of submerging people to renew them in spirit, and long before that the mayyim hayyim (healing waters) Fount of Miriam where the Israelites drank while in the desert. Siloham, a pool cut into rocks in the center of the City of David is another ancient healing source to ponder http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pool_of_Siloam. There is Lourdes where young Bernadette tended sheep and said she saw and spoke with “The Lady” and many other places. And in Ireland, I visited “The Warty Well” where you take a copper penny (if I remember correctly) and with the water and penny, rub the wart to make it fall off. (It works by testimony of people I know very well!).  And of course there is consecrated holy water in many religions, but you don’t to go to ancient sites or even to new places where holy water can be found because at home you can put a cup of salt water in a bath, or instead, a cup of apple cider vinegar in a very hot bath and this is also known to help clear out your sinuses (as you breathe the steam) and draw toxins from the skin and glands. If you know of any other bathing sites or tips for healing in water, please let us know!

 

Life’s a Beach! Using Drawing to Develop Intuitiion

Detail from a recent intuitive stream drawing reading/ copyright Elaine Clayton 2013

In a recent visual-intuitive meditation, using drawing to access intuitive knowledge (I share this method in my book, MAKING MARKS: Discover the Art of Intuitive Drawing/Simon and Schuster/Beyond Words due out in May), I saw in a past position, a figure with the #2 (see in brown color) which to me signifies “daughter” or sisterhood, as well as some other associations. A beach scene appeared. All the associations of beachiness (not a real word, but it works here!) came to mind: the feeling of recreation, childhood dreams and sunny days. There is a large wave approaching, which didn’t feel scary, but more like the way life moves us on, away from our carefree days and into the rest of life. I enjoyed coloring in this beach scene, but it is only one way to perceive the shapes and lines. When sharing this with the client, it resonated for her in that she had many beach memories and it gave her a chance to see ways in which the good times in life were stored within her, no matter what else life brought (amongst other meanings that came to her).

Guest Poet: Amy Miller

Poetry is a way of expressing thoughts, feelings and experiences in a transformational way because it takes us out of the ordinary.  Celebrating special life events through poetry is a natural for poet Amy Miller.  Amy serves others joyfully through PoemsToGo. “I create original poems,” she says, “and original speeches and toasts.”  I asked Amy about her inspiration and she said her beloved father inspired her most.

I used to love it when my Dad told me stories and my grandparents.  Their stories stuck with me and when I lost my Dad in a tragic accident,  I turned that loss into something poetic and happy,  that’s how I created PTG –  The testimonials speak for themselves and I know my Dad would be very proud of me as I am of him, he was my role model, taken away too young when I was only 12 years old. “I used to love it when my dad and grandparents told me stories. Their stories stuck with me.” When she lost her dad in a tragic accident, the deep anguish motivated her to create. Amy says, “I turned that loss into something poetic and happy, that’s how I came to create PTG. The testimonials speak for themselves and I know my dad would be very proud of me as I am of him. He was my role model, taken away too young when I was only 12 years old.”

Amy’s ability to turn her despair and grief into an artful mission to help celebrate the events of the lives of others is very inspiring to me as an artist. If you’d like to explore her poetry or have an up-coming event that needs an excellent, original and custom-made poem, you’ll enjoy Amy’s site, www.poemstogo.tv where you can read sample poems for many occasions.

Below is a picture of Amy with her father at the beach when she was young:

Post Traumatic Stress and Art

Elaine Clayton copyright 2011

You can relieve symptoms of Post Traumatic Stress through creating art. I don’t say that as an authority on PTSD, but as an artist and person. I’ve experienced first hand the healing power of creative play, drawing and art making in general, as a way to “just be” and to feel calm.

It is a year after Hurricane Sandy and one of my sons and I still get a physically ill feeling when we drive anywhere near the house we had to rent briefly during the hurricane (we were safe there, and luckily didn’t get the rental BY THE BEACH which would have made it all much worse since all those homes flooded, but we still loathed the place we were in–think moth balls and too much porcelain and glass—and were freezing for the entire week after the hurricane). My only answer is to create. My son instinctively longed for and started building models this weekend, saying he loved, “peace and quiet” while putting the models together. I am in the studio making art to let the ptsd of that time drift away. Bless all those who still do not have their home life or housing resolved, and bless those who valiantly advocate for them!

When Prospects Seem Gloomy

Elaine Clayton copyright 2013  / monoprint with water color wash

More than before, I find that during intuitive healing sessions, people feel gloomy about the future. College age kids, for example, are facing huge debts and no jobs seem available. How can we create anew when the resources seem nonexistent?

It’s true, it is difficult. We are living in days that are full of turmoil and edgy circumstances, the feeling of “what next?” is always stirring. The macrocosm can be perceived as a vast sea of doom: imploding dramas, unfolding scenes of war, extreme weather, political strife and even children are a part of the cruelty in some horrific circumstances. And all of it lapping up against us personally as we sail along in our own little boats, trying to stay afloat or get where we’re going.  We try to be seaworthy, listening to our sense of truth (our inner divine nature, our intuition) letting the wind guide us as we navigate.  And though these miseries are rocking our boats, there is still the microcosm which is our own inner universe. This is a different kind of seascape. This inner universe is affected by the outer but the deeper in we go, the more we are able to consciously, from the inside out, envision a world we choose. As we create inwardly, we see over time the more “real” this can become outside of us. Using meditation, creative visualization and recording dreams, we may find that some measure of hope and renewal can be grasped even against the worst, most unimaginable circumstances.  We can create an inner realm where all is well, and where we see ourselves as a part of peace, abundance, miracles coming true, the impossible as possible. And instead of feeling defeated by the huge problems we feel invading our vessels and our souls, we can be part of a wondrous change.

I nurture my sense of “going inward” often by read accounts of Near Death Experiences. They have always fascinated me and over and over we are told by those who have had a glimpse of what happens when we die, the same truths revealed. The main message seems to be that if we focus on small acts of kindness, being true in our personal relationships and attending to or loving others the best we can,  we will have learned well.

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Akashic Records, Soul Keeper

Akashi Records/ mono print and drawing/ ink, watercolor and acrylic on paper Elaine Clayton copyright 2013

As I created this mono print, half the fun of it was not knowing what would happen. Art is most enjoyable when I am surprised by it as it progresses.  What emerged into my consciousness via an image on paper was a sense of purpose (symbolized by the appearance of the whale–known as the “Keeper of the Akashic Records”).  What seemed to whisper to me during the drawing phase of this mono print was the spirit of life purpose (after the print was made, I went about finding the meanings and the imagery anew).  The discovery, through experiences, of my purpose in life, and how each of us finds what that means to us as individuals kept coming to mind and heart.  For me, the purpose is to realize that all these constructs I’ve found myself in (life roles–that of daughter, teenager, wife, mother, artist, teacher, etc.) are there to show me who I am. I can easily see all the ways in which I need to grow more loving, more patient, more internally loving. The roles I’m in only show me the reflections of ways in which I need to grow, and sometimes ways in which I have over time.