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Thursday, October 20, 2011

What is Spiritual Art?

What is spiritual art?  In a way, it’s an odd question for me to answer.  When your worldview incorporates the idea that all things are a manifestation of the Divine, and are thus Divine themselves, there is literally no act that is not spiritual.  The stumbling block that I think many people have – myself included, often enough – is remembering to be aware of the spiritual nature of the act.  We get busy, we’re worried about work or bills, and while we may go through the motions of a daily practice, sometimes we forget to be aware of what it means.

All art can be considered spiritual, as it is a reflection of the artist, her nature, and the Divinity of her nature.  But sometimes that awareness – called “mindfulness” by Buddhists and psychologists – is forgotten.

Mindfulness is a powerful thing. It is built into behavioral therapies to cultivate emotional self-awareness; self-awareness allows for the application of specific coping skills; and this can transform a person’s relationships with other people, by transforming a person’s relationship with herself.  It is, in itself, a form of magic.

Mindfulness gives intuition more freedom to sift and drift and stumble upon insight.  It gives us access to the things we forget about ourselves.  It can slow breathing, relax the body, and reduce stress by instilling a sense of calm.  Trance and journey-work begin by mindfully turning our awareness inward, to the physical processes of our body (breathing, heartbeat), and to the happenings of the mind.

Mindfulness deepens our connection to meaning. And just like art becomes the intersection of the vision of the artist, and the perspective of the audience, so does spiritual art create a shared meaning.  Which can be deepened by approaching it, as creator or viewer, with mindfulness.

By approaching our performances with this conscious and conscientious awareness, Terra Mysterium strives to create an elevated and stronger sense of the meaning of what we do.  In the creating, writing, composing, choreographing, rehearsing, performing, we strive to be mindful of the intent, of what we wish to communicate and how we wish to entertain.  Our creative acts may already be sacred, but remembering that they are is the drive behind crafting spiritual performance.

The other half is you, the audience. Hopefully we inspire you to meet us at that intersection of our vision and your perspective with mindfulness.