“At the age of 45 my heart literally broke. A boyfriend finished a relationship unexpectedly and a few days later I suffered a heart attack. My understanding as an Arts Psychotherapist is that there is no delineation between mind and body, so it did not surprise me that my heart physically mirrored my actual emotions of grief and abandonment. Since this time, I have been conscious that love is an important part of survival and healthy living, it is also an art which one needs to develop and practise (Fromm 1995, p.4). At the age of 46 I entered therapy which led to my training as an Arts Psychotherapist, giving me a greater experiential awareness around love. The last few years have brought another dimension into my life – love and the sacred, this creative project developed the process further, it took me to, painful as well as joyful places; shifts happened resulting in a deeper personal relationship within myself and towards others. This journey has taken place in two stages. In the first I allowed myself to let go and follow my intuition through the creative acts of painting, poetry and sound making. The second is writing this essay; analysing and untangling what has happened during my investigation of the phenomena of love.”
https://vimeo.com/487146274 Video of creative project
I set my intention, to heal the love in relationship to my mother. Intuitively I felt guided towards Clary Sage. I walked towards the plant with my sketch book, pastels and a voice recorder, which I lay down next to me. An image of an alchemical-like flask appeared in my mind, accompanied by a feeling of heaviness in my stomach like a lead stone and a tightness across my chest; I felt overwhelmed with sadness as I ‘drew’ out this image onto paper.
See https://vimeo.com/444835097 for the Song of the Clary Sage
See https://vimeo.com/446227092 for the Song of St John’s Wort
“The heart is a power centre of divine energy called, ‘himma’. This term, ‘himma’ and the process I have been trying to describe is limited by translation from Arabic to English, even more so, as it signifies something beyond words. Himma expresses this divine heart energy through symbolic language by, ”meditating, conceiving, imagining, projecting (and) ardently desiring” (Corbin 1998, p.222). Corbin describes this creative imagination as residing in an intermediary place that he called the Mundus Imaginalis, the imaginal world – a place that “is not located anywhere… because, in relation to what is in sensory space, it is everywhere” (Ibid.,p.4). He calls it ,”an intermediate universe where the spiritual takes body and the body becomes spiritual” (Ibid., p.4). This place that resides inside and outside us, reminded me of the surrounding spiritual world that I had been shown as a child through the teachings of Swedenborg.”
As the philosopher Patrick Harpur writes, “we can only truly love each other when we also love something beyond each other”
(Harpur 2011, p.122).