Creative Space with Jennifer Logue

"The Artist's Way: Week 12"—Recovering a Sense of Faith

April 21, 2024 Jennifer Logue
"The Artist's Way: Week 12"—Recovering a Sense of Faith
Creative Space with Jennifer Logue
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Creative Space with Jennifer Logue
"The Artist's Way: Week 12"—Recovering a Sense of Faith
Apr 21, 2024
Jennifer Logue

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On this week’s episode of Creative Space, we’re diving into Chapter 12 of Julia Cameron’s seminal book on creativity, “The Artist’s Way.” The focus for this week is “Recovering a Sense of Faith.”

There is so much to cover but there are four principles we’ll talk about: trusting, mystery, the imagination at play, and escape velocity.

One of my favorite passages from this chapter:

“We speak often about ideas as brainchildren. What we do not realize is that brainchildren, like all babies, should not be dragged from the creative womb prematurely. Ideas, like stalactites and stalagmites, form in the inner cave of consciousness. They form in drips and drops, not by squared off building blocks. We must learn to wait for an idea to hatch.”

If you’re interested in reading "The Artist’s Way" and/or following along with the podcast as you complete the work, you can purchase it here.

For more on me, your host and creative coach, visit:
jenniferlogue.com.

To sign up for the weekly Creative Space newsletter, visit:
eepurl.com/h8SJ9b.

To become a patron of the Creative Space Podcast, visit:
bit.ly/3ECD2Kr.

Show Notes Transcript

Send us a Text Message.

On this week’s episode of Creative Space, we’re diving into Chapter 12 of Julia Cameron’s seminal book on creativity, “The Artist’s Way.” The focus for this week is “Recovering a Sense of Faith.”

There is so much to cover but there are four principles we’ll talk about: trusting, mystery, the imagination at play, and escape velocity.

One of my favorite passages from this chapter:

“We speak often about ideas as brainchildren. What we do not realize is that brainchildren, like all babies, should not be dragged from the creative womb prematurely. Ideas, like stalactites and stalagmites, form in the inner cave of consciousness. They form in drips and drops, not by squared off building blocks. We must learn to wait for an idea to hatch.”

If you’re interested in reading "The Artist’s Way" and/or following along with the podcast as you complete the work, you can purchase it here.

For more on me, your host and creative coach, visit:
jenniferlogue.com.

To sign up for the weekly Creative Space newsletter, visit:
eepurl.com/h8SJ9b.

To become a patron of the Creative Space Podcast, visit:
bit.ly/3ECD2Kr.

Jennifer Logue:

Hello everyone and welcome to another episode of Creative Space, a podcast where we explore, learn and grow in creativity together. I'm your host, jennifer Logue, and for the last 12 weeks, we've been doing something different on the podcast. I'm doing the Artist's Way by Julia Cameron for the first time and I wanted to share the experience with you, and we are now on the final chapter of the Artist's Way, chapter 12, recovering a Sense of Faith. Recovering a Sense of Faith. Now, in this episode, I'm going to go over key points in the chapter, as I've been doing, but stay tuned for a follow-up episode where I talk about my experience doing the artist's way. That is an episode in itself and I wanted to be completely finished with the course before I reflected on the whole experience these last 12 weeks.

Jennifer Logue:

I'm going to touch on four core principles in this chapter Trusting, mystery, the imagination at play and escape velocity. Trusting I talk about this on my website, but creativity requires faith and that's what Cameron opens up this section with. It's all about trust and releasing control, which I know is easier said than done. I think, deep down, all of us are control freaks. We want to feel safe and the unknown because it's not known can make us feel unsafe, depending on our attitude towards it, can make us feel unsafe, depending on our attitude towards it. But when we release control, that's when the magic happens in our creative projects and in our lives. But often, to maintain that illusion of control, we resist our creative urges. Cameron says we have bought the message of our culture this world is a veil of tears and we are meant to be dutiful and then die. The truth is, we are meant to be bountiful and live. The universe will always support affirmative action. Our truest dream for ourselves is always God's will for us. Then she references a quote from Joseph Campbell. I love that so much and I cannot tell you how often this happens in my own life. Whenever I take a step of faith, new opportunities open up. It literally redirects the course of your life. Just to illustrate, imagine if you're on the dating apps and you're talking to someone you're interested in, but you keep putting off meeting them in person. Imagine the two possibilities In one, you don't go on the date and you stay in your safe, predictable world. In the other, you go on the date and a new world opens up. If you end up in a relationship with this person, this could be the person you marry, the person you have a family with, but without taking that step of faith, you'll never know. I think the same holds true for our creativity. What if you signed up for that acting class? What if you stepped away from corporate life to start your own business? It's all about trusting that the path will appear the minute you take the next step forward. Mystery Something else I've talked about in my own writing on creativity is how creativity begins in darkness.

Jennifer Logue:

But Cameron brings up another idea, taking the idea further, about not rushing our ideas out of the darkness too quickly, and I love this. I've been challenging myself to finish an entire song each week, and this week the song I started writing could go so many different ways and because I'm so excited about it, I feel this urgency to finish it quickly. But after reading this passage I stopped myself. I was like okay, I have a course that I like and a first verse and a rough track produced, but before I force this second verse out, I'm going to let it drip drop. Like Cameron says here in this passage, we speak often about ideas as brain children. What we do not realize is that brain children, like all babies, should not be dragged from the creative womb prematurely. Ideas like stalactites and stalagmites form the inner cave of consciousness. They form in drips and drops, not by squared off building blocks. We must learn to wait for an idea to hatch. I absolutely love this, the drip drop of creativity. I just love it. As she notes further down in the section, the creative process is a process of surrender, not control. So this morning when I went to work on the second verse, after stepping away from it, letting the ideas simmer, it just wrote itself. There was no forcing like there was before, and this may seem like a nuanced concept, but I think it may be one of the most important lessons I learned in the artist's way and she's not saying to not be productive we still need to produce work, we still need to show up and do the work, but we should cooperate with the creative process instead of forcing it. So I found that really interesting.

Jennifer Logue:

The imagination at play this is another growth area for me and one of my favorite sections in the book. When I was a young musician, I took my music way too seriously. I was disciplined, committed, but man, I was serious and I wrote so many sad songs. I really needed to lighten up. Creativity became fun for me when I started co-producing video content in New York City, hosting food shows, interviewing celebrities on the red carpet. I was able to play and have fun with it because I came at it without an ego. I came to that work with a beginner's mind and then I used to feel guilty about going off the music path to explore other mediums. But what I've learned, and what this passage affirmed, for me at least, is that we need to have those detours to stay fresh creatively and man just to live a happy life.

Jennifer Logue:

And Julia says in this section we are an ambitious society and it is often difficult for us to cultivate forms of creativity that do not directly serve us and our career goals. Recovery urges our re-examining definitions of creativity and expanding them to include what in the past we called hobbies. She adds it is a paradox of creative recovery that we must get serious about taking ourselves lightly. We must work at learning to play Pickleball, hiking, photography these are all fun hobbies for me and fill my well. As Cameron says, life is meant to be an artist's date. That is the ultimate quote for my wall. I don't know about you, escape Velocity.

Jennifer Logue:

This last section of the book is short but covers a concept called escape velocity. It's when you're ready to launch, to take next big step, and then, wham bam alakazam, you attract to you the test and a few examples she gives of the test. You're about to marry the nice guy and then the toxic guy, who's no good for you, calls you up. You're about to leave the job and the boss from hell and suddenly you get your first raise in five years. All very relatable. So in terms of creativity, it can happen like this Our career begins to heat up and we immediately want to share our excitement with that friend who doesn't support us. If we don't call him, she says he'll randomly call us, and Cameron calls this the test. In order to achieve what Cameron calls escape velocity, these are her instructions we must learn to keep our own counsel, to move silently among doubters, to voice our plans only among our allies and to name our allies accurately. It seems simple, but it's a lot to work on.

Jennifer Logue:

Finally, my very last highlighted quote from Cameron in this section do not indulge or tolerate anyone who throws cold water in your direction. I don't know about you, but I'm feeling empowered. This book, this journey, has changed so much for me, but I won't get into that in this episode. As I mentioned before, I'll be recapping my experience with the Artist's Way in an upcoming episode because I myself I'm still processing. But that's all I have for this episode of Creative Space. If you're interested in checking out the Artist's Way by Julia Cameron and doing the work on your own, I've linked to it in the show notes. My name is Jennifer Logue. Appreciate you taking the time to listen to Creative Space Until next time.