New Work at Westport Women’s Club

IMG_1523
The Creation of the Hebrew Letter Shin  copyright 2016 Elaine Clayton

I’m thrilled to show new work at the Westport Women’s Club this weekend. You are welcome and encouraged to join us April 30th from 5-8pm at the Westport Women’s Club in Westport, CT. There is a selection of fabulous artists showing their work. A percentage of sales goes to a worthy charity.

About Shin, this important and mystical letter is known as the “Eternal Flame”. To learn more about Shin, see this video.

Empathic Curiosity: Caring About the Feelings of Others

IMG_0883

Detail of a recent painting/ Elaine Clayton copyright 2016

As long  as we have a feeling stir within the heart, which reminds us that we are not separate from those others we encounter, there is a chance for goodness, wholeness, deep love. Empathy is the act of perceiving the feelings of others as one’s own.

If we are not separate in truth, and are One in that we are all created in the image of the One God, the Great Creator, then it all makes sense to me. It is why a very old knowing was communicated and holds true: Treat others as you would like to be treated. Don’t do things to people you would not like to have done to you.

Life seems to teach us that when we do things that harm others, we get it back, in some form. This then teaches us how it feels to have been “the other person” and then we feel within ourselves that Oneness we were not conscious of before.

I see life as a kind of wild ride where we gain consciousness bit by bit, or sometimes through tragedy or crisis, through our own actions and because of the actions of others. What else is there? I’d rather be curious about others, and ask myself many times a day, “What would it feel like to be that person right now?”

And then to choose to be kind, loving, generous.

Get MAKING MARKS: Discover the Art of Intuitive Drawing and enjoy strengthening your empathic curiosity!

How To Keep Painful Memories From Taking Over

IMG_1286

Painted Stream Drawing  Elaine Clayton copyright 2016

Do you notice that throughout the day different memories drift into your mind and before you know it, you’ve got a running narrative of various painful thoughts? When I stream draw with people and we ready ourselves for a memory stream drawing, the memories that generally want our attention immediately are not all the happy ones. Ekhart Tolle describes this as the “pain body”—it is like an alternate self to who you truly are–an ego construct that hangs out with you, often makes decisions for you and runs your life–if you allow it. It is a hungry separate self carrying all the pain you’ve suffered and it feeds on more pain, and it will fight hard to stay with you in your every moment . You, the real you, the whole and complete and miraculous you in essence, is not this pain body.

So why do we let memories from so long ago or even yesterday, ruin our moment in the now? Why would we let this specter, this victim of life circumstances have power over our time, each moment? We don’t have to. The moment we notice this is happening, that we replay in our thoughts things that re-injure us, this is the pivotal opportunity because once YOU realize YOU can see that this pain has staying power, YOU are no longer identifying with the pain because you are now connecting to who you truly are–the observer, the witness to circumstances. Stream drawing is one way to get into that observer mode and fast, plus it is a physical action, which edifies your intention because it puts into action, and then into physical form via the actual drawing on paper.

Stream draw to get control over the pain body, and fly over it. And have some fun!

 

Stream Drawing of the Week 3-23-16


IMG_1248

I remember in the 1970s when we started to be more aware of littering the environment, do you? Animals were being harmed by six pack plastic holders and bottles, and many other things such as styrofoam tc. This stream drawing had a section that reminded me of that. I gazed and saw a bird that cannot swim freely because it looks laden with garbage. One of the images around the bird’s neck looked like a safety pin, the old fashioned kind used for diapers.

I thought of ways in which we weigh ourselves down or impede ourselves by our own junk or the junk of others–and in our attempt to be “safe” or feel our needs are met, we may be keeping ourselves in constructs and relationship patterns that are self defeating.

So this stream drawing gets me to ask myself if I allow things to literally weigh me down, whether it be habits I know longer need or ways of reacting that don’t serve me or others. Do I cling to what feels safe, even if that which I cling to is not very good for me?

Stream Drawing of the Week 2-14-16: You’re the Pitcher

StreamDraw3-14-16

Stream Drawing/ Chakra Chart  Baseball player copyright 2016 Elaine Clayton

I was delighted to see a baseball pitcher show up in today’s Stream Drawing of the Week. This shows up at the root (from about solar down to primal root) of the drawing in one of the Chakra Chart views. This is a funny one because I’m no expert about baseball, but I will take note of some of my own associations and personal unconscious meanings (made conscious after I ponder it?) as best I am able:

  • We used to listen to “Take Me Out to the Ball Game” on tape to fall asleep (along with Billy Goats Gruff and other stories and songs)-good memory
  • A pitcher has secret hand signals the batter doesn’t know–skill and cunning as part of the game
  • The game is constructed around a “diamond”–I love that–the diamond is so a lovely aspect of baseball for me
  • I remember happily watching games my brothers were in and later high school games–pleasant weather, etc.
  • I met Hank Aaron once!
  • In baseball you run around bases to try to get back home with all you’ve got

(Now you gaze at this and write your own memories and associations to get your own meanings).

In addition, I want to place myself as pitcher and imagine what that feels like. I have to aim with precision. I risk throwing a foul ball. I want to get the ball just almost perfectly off center enough to confuse the batter so he/she swings and misses. “Playing games” comes to mind. We do a lot in games we would not feel comfortable doing in real life (I would never want to confuse someone and cause them to be at a disadvantage in real life). I remember my dad telling me to understand that if I had to be competitive in some situation, or get involved in some way with some goal, to always remember it is “just a game” and not “real”–what he was saying is that spiritually the only thing that is real is God and our Oneness with others. All else is “just a game”.  In other words, winning, losing and competing is not love and it does not define who we are. How good you are at the game only says that you’re good at the game. How loving and forgiving and trusting you are is the only thing that is true and real in life. Enjoy life, but don’t get caught up in the game to the point where you lose your soul or sense of self that transcends all notions of win or lose. One day you won’t even be here, so don’t think winning is the answer. And if you feel labeled as a “loser” by yourself or others,  think about what that really means. Losing is a perceived point of lack of reward for one’s skills or value according to others. Be in your worth, which is love itself. If you lose one thing, it opens you to something else. There is no failure, only expansion. And so off we go, expanding and turning our “losses” into new ways to see and live. See ya on the diamond of life!

Where Do My Thoughts and Emotions Take Me?

StreamDraw2-8-16

Stream Drawing of the Week 2-8-16

OK, this stream drawing really made me think. In a playful, creative attitude, I closed my eyes and drew using my non-dominant hand. When I opened my eyes, continuing that playful feeling, i explored the image, gazing. The image had what looked like a person in the center. I relate to this central figure as “I”. I was driving a car (highlighted in blue). That’s good, I’m in the drivers seat, meaning I am in control of my self and where I’m headed, but where am I headed? I see that it looks like I am bumping up against someone. And there is a windsock or finger pointing in the other direction…so for me, windsock is symbolic of directionals and Spirit (since wind is the invisible and unseen force). If Spirit is pointing me to the right, toward future, but I’m driving myself to the left, to the past, where I hit up against something or someone, it seems best to turn around and go the other way.

Our thoughts and emotions really do drive us places, and often where we wish we had not gone. Looking at the past is great, but looking at it too much (and we are not very conscious of the many times throughout the day where we think of memories or past situations, etc.) is going to keep us from that great journey of experiences we have yet to discover. I’m going to try to do a u-turn here and see what’s up on the road ahead!

When Numbers Appear in Stream Drawings

IMG_1049

Stream Drawing of the Week 2-29-16

Often in stream drawings, numbers appear. If you’re like me and you experience the world through synesthesia (the blending of the senses) then numbers become male or female, have a corresponding color, may even suggest a scent (example: number 2 for me always reminded me of my little sister, and the color yellow comes to mind and the soft sounds of birds in summer as well as the scent of a little flower). This makes it fun and easy to explore the ways in which numbers can suggest ways of thinking and feeling. If you’re not experiencing the world like that, you may have fun with the symbolic meaning in numerology and or recall your own personal unconscious memory and associations and dwell on them a bit (example: “I remember turning 5 and I got a big cake and a bicycle…” etc).

In this week’s stream drawing, I saw a 4 and a 2. For me, 4 signifies home, stability and security. What in the home is feeling secure? What is not? What can I do to make my home feel safer or more calm or more exciting? For me personally, I want to have people over more and enjoy and celebrate in my home. I want to make it resonate in fun, cheerful ways, with the personalities of those who inhabit it. And the other number that I saw while gazing is 2 which for me (besides what I wrote above) signifies grace, because it looks like a swan. Grace under pressure. Grace and mother-sister-daughter energy in general: that which is feminine in nature, gentle and innocent as a child. I may ask myself to pay attention to my relationships with other women. Am I supportive or destructive to their lives? Am I honest and caring through my choices and actions? Sisterhood is a big, important area of relationship because it is a reflection of who I am as a woman. And, if you’re a man, you might want to consider how you treat women. Do you treat your girlfriend the way you’d want your little sister or mother to be treated? Do you have ways of enveloping that feminine creative and receptive attitude into your life?

Try a stream drawing today and see when you gaze upon it if you discover numbers. Get yourself a copy of MAKING MARKS: Discover the Art of Intuitive Drawing to learn more about stream drawing and intuitive development through the creative and bold process of stream of consciousness drawing!

Stream Drawing for 2-22-16: Sacrifice

IMG_0974I was so surprised to see in this week’s Stream Drawing a collection of lines and shapes that I perceived as an image of Abraham and Isaac. In this Torah portion, one message I love is, “Do not sacrifice your children!”. That’s a good one. In Abraham’s day, people were tossing kids over the cliff to appease their gods and I’m so relieved that the story of Abraham makes a point not to do that. But symbolically, how did we feel sacrificed as children? Did you feel you had to give up something because of your place in the family? An example might be the oldest child has less freedom as she takes care of the younger siblings. Or the child who was academic was told he’d never be an athlete, so he gave up wanting to try a sport. There are many ways in which we might feel we sacrificed something of ourselves–whether it is what we think is possible for us to accomplish or what we think our roles in life should be. We don’t have to sacrifice for the sake of it, and we certainly can do things we thought were not ours to do or be things we were told we cannot be.

Because this image of Abraham, a knife and Isaac, with the ram appear in the solar chakra down to the root, it seems very important to notice how you feel in your environment (home, work, school) and see where you hold tension, from the solar chakra down, and ask if there is something you gave up that you no longer have to give up, or if there is something withheld from you no longer to be missed. And if there is something you do now that is best to sacrifice for the greater good, now is the time to follow through. Sacrifice is a loaded topic and I’d welcome very much your impressions or ideas about it, and your personal experiences with that life theme.

Tell me what you think about sacrifice, and share with me any stream drawings you create this week, I’d love to know your experience!

IMG_0972

Elaine Clayton copyright 2016   Sacrifice elaineclayton.com