Thursday, June 28, 2012

Division and wholeness

Yesterday morning I dropped off the art for the Picnic show, which opens at the Bainbridge Arts and Crafts Gallery next Friday night.  I'm not all that excited about it, to be honest, but the light in some of the images is nice...

Boy, talk about damning with faint praise!  I'll share a couple of my favorites here later, but for now I'm posting an image I AM excited about: I painted this one yesterday, and it feels like I'm getting closer to what I'm trying to do.

The main indicator for that is that with this one, as with the young girl I painted a week or two ago, when I look at it there is an emotional response, a sort of heart surge of recognition.

After spending a little time with that, I decided to name this one Separation. I kept feeling like it was a particle of light spinning off from a body of light -- like a soul leaving the oneness to reside in a body.  The light patch on the right has a vaguely maternal feel to me, and the one on the left feels like she's being carried away, safely, but reaching back as if for a final embrace.  But then Christine from Mystic Meandering commented that she saw it more as emergence than separation -- and I like that, it feels right to me.  So now it's titled Emergence.

I know.  It's all a fantasy, and others might not see it that way.  That certainly wasn't what I intended to paint -- but then, I didn't intend ANYthing, I just painted and watched it grow... which is, I have to say, a really wonderful process, when it goes well.  I still don't seem to have much of a sense of control over it, but I'm starting to like what happens with the brushes and the colors more.

... and I finished this reading of A Hidden Wholeness this morning.  I say "this reading" because I know I'll be coming back to it in the fall, reading it more intentionally with a circle of friends; I look forward to that.  But I love that he finishes with a poem from Mary Oliver, and somehow the poem seems to connect with this image, so I'll close with its closing verses:

When it's over, I want to say: all my life
I was a bride married to amazement.
I was the bridegroom, taking the world into my arms.

When it's over, I don't want to wonder
if I have made of my life something particular, and real.
I don't want to find myself sighing and frightened,
or full of argument.

I don't want to end up simply having visited this world.

Here's what Parker Palmer writes, after the poem, closing the book:

"As we embrace the simple fact of our mortality, we also embrace true self.  Knowing with new clarity that the gift of life is ours only for a while, we choose to live "divided no more" simply because it would be foolish not to.  As we live into that choice, we see with new clarity that all the life around us is "something precious to the earth," and we find more and more ways to honor the soul in ourselves and in every mortal creature."


Mystic Meandering said...

This is exciting Diane! :) I felt the "heart surge of recognition" too!

I see it as more of "emergence" than "separation." Interesting how our belief systems influence how we see things. And I actually see a heart in the center, between what looks like 2 white arms holding it. :)

I love how you are "letting go" of the *idea* of "control" actually - before it takes over - opening to the movement within, and just allowing it to be painted *through* you...

And I only want to add this - as you already know - "Nothing can separate us from the Love of Christ." Nothing... Not even our beliefs in separation... You are embraced and loved always... Christine

Diane Walker said...

Ooh, Christine, I love that. So it's officially renamed "Emergence," and if I find some time I'll change the post a bit to reflect that.

And yes, that used to be a favorite song of mine (the kids got VERY tired of hearing me sing it): "Nothing separates us, nothing separates us, nothing separates us from the Love of God!"