Do you see with your eyes? If you close your eyes, do you still see? The eyes and the idea of seeing are prominent in our culture, a very visual culture. From Tiresias, the mythological blind seer, to the little boy in the movie The Sixth Sense, we learn that not everyone sees the world in the same way.
Not long ago I stood with a friend looking upon a dry, golden California hillside. “It’s so dead!” she exclaimed. But I looked at this hill often, at all hours of the day and night. I saw it alive with deer, wild boar, a skunk, a family of partridge, and even a peacock! A circling hawk often hunted for a gopher or two. And a wild turkey once wandered from the hill and peered in our second story window! So I was seeing life at the same time she saw death.
Blossoming In The Desert
When you look out on the desert, what do you see? Like Georgia O’Keefe, our member Connie moved to the desert and is coming into her own–her own presence and her own power. If you have been one of the lucky ones to attend a visualization session led by Connie, you know that her work is immense and interesting!
Shamanic Methods Enhancing Art
I can see what moves at the boundaries of the ordinary only by watching it from the corner of my eye; a direct gaze pushes it out of my reach. So I squint as long as I can. Using the same method, but in darkness with eyes forward, I stare into the candle flame. Both practices reveal weird and lovely images that only I can see!”
This game I played many times in girlhood helped me relax and halt adolescent angst. I called it CORNERING.
Today I recognize those practices as SEEING: viewing non – ordinary reality to expand perception and to contact inner resources for guidance and healing and to help others heal themselves. Most importantly, I learned to use SEEING to access and develop my creativity. DREAMING is an additional method of expanding perceptions in service of creating. People dream in sleep, while awake and in day dreams. All experience IS dreaming and with intent it can be used for the same creative purposes as SEEING.
Both techniques have other uses…that is for another time.
If you are interested in learning more about SEEING and DREAMING in the creation of art, please consider Shamanism and the Modern Artist Technicians of Ecstasy by Mark Levy (1993).
——-Connie Cox July 21, 2015©