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Archive for January 9th, 2014

???????????????????????????????Image:  Lux by Caitlin Fennelly

The arts have run through my veins like life giving blood from the earliest time I can remember.  My grandmother danced me to sleep as a baby and I was surrounded by music, art, dance, writing and a mother and grandmother who knew the value of their mystical worth. That spiritually artistic environment helped me to create my own way of moving through the physical world, and although I did not completely realize the intrinsic connection to a path of magick, I saw beauty, energy and form in the places that most do not realize it. I believe the fabric of the human soul and consciousness is fed by the stream of artistic endeavors and creative actions that surround and permeate our every moment, whether consciously or at the subtle levels of our responses.  In retrospect, this belief and the foundation from which it was created has been the singular thread that has punctuated all of my life’s experiences both magickally and mundane.

I am a visual kinesthetic learner; meaning that I learn best when visually engaged and am able to act out or move in accord with what is being taught. Most magickal workers are visual kinesthetic in their basic learning style.  This mode of learning and processing is also the underpinning of most artistic experience.  The Arts stimulate the senses and open and awaken the neural pathways to respond in a more dynamic way. This stimulation in turn causes a tactile response; integrating and responding to the experience through the process of doing.  Add the visual component and you have the key ingredients of magickal practice.  Learning through doing and visualizing intent-fully what is sought to be brought into manifestation.

We hone these skills through access, albeit at times unconsciously to the themes of artistic expression that surrounds us daily.  The term “Circle of Art” gives some indication of the potency of artistic expression that is called upon when crafting the work of magick.  It is within this circle of continuum that we use sound, movement, dramatic intent and create the painting of vision of what we desire.

It is scientific fact that the brain responds in accord with the and signature of rhythm that is provided it.  If we look at this response using the definition of art it is clear why so many of these forms of creative beauty are used to access the deeper response of the soul and elevate conscious awareness to a place of inspiration.  Music is used as therapy to heal, calm and stimulate function because of this innate resonance of the neural pathways to specific electrical patterns.  Visual Art evokes emotion through use of color, tone and hue; again creating specific patterns of vibratory resonance and the geometric or non-linear method of structure produces its own set of stimuli for the brain to respond or react to.  Movement or Dance catches us in the wave of energy produced by the fluctuation, ebb and flow of carving out shapes within the fabric of space and the auditory response to the music accompanying this pattern of vibration creates a new set of rhythmic response.  Theater and Drama allow us to step into the roles of fantasy and myth, try on different personas or live through the experiences being portrayed giving us respite from the routine experience.

Dance:

My first magickal experience occurred as a dancer performing at the age of 10 or so.  I did not at the time realize I was setting up the gateway and intent for magick to move through me.  My only intent was to connect so fully and deeply that I would become the persona of the role I was portraying and lose my human nature in the process. The desire was to transcend human form and become something more.  The intent was powerful enough and the music and rhythm acted as the keys that opened the gates to the other realms through movement and motion.  I became the swan flying high above the earth. I was the beautiful being that was shot through the heart and gracefully fell to earth, wounded and in the throes of death.  A final arch and curve o beautiful elongated neck, breath of white feathery wing and the final lifting upwards towards eternal ascending flight as death welcomed me into its soft sleep.  The music stopped and I once again returned to the land of human and living; applause awaking me from this deep connection forged as the gates of magickal working closed until called forth again.

When we dance, we embrace the flow of energy as a kinesthetic quality.  We engage the breath inhaling the prana of life and exhale out offering up our consciousness to ecstasy and joy. This practice has been used since the dawn of humanity as devotion, celebration and more. The movement of the Whirling Dervishes is used as a tool of meditative connection.  The Dances of Universal Peace of the Sufi’s is used to set a tone and rhythm of gentle flow into the aethers; setting the cycle of cause and effect into motion. The classical dance of India, in particular the Kathak engages the art of storytelling.  Those artists who performed this style of sacred dance incorporate music and mime as they brought to life the myths and great sags of the Indian pantheons and sacred Texts.

Drama:

One of my first workshops was entitled: Ritual Drama. We began with discussion of how adding a dramatic (or theatrical) approach to the myths, celebrations and stories of the Sabbats.  These stories enacted were not only the vehicles for enlivening our own inner creative nature but served to draw out these same qualities within those who were witnessing these plays.   We enacted the celebration of Yule and the battle of the Holly and Oak kings.  Emphasis was on projecting the voice and calling up the energy of the role and story you were portraying from the center of the solar plexus and the throat chakra centers.  We had no costumes, just imagination and the desire to embody what was to be portrayed.  Each word, each gesture had its own meaning of significance and each imparted its own wisdom etched into the consciousness.

Music:

Music soothes the soul, quiets the mind and sets the listener in a space of tranquility and peace. Music unleashes the prime instinctual nature and rouses the passions, spirit and emotions of the listener to a place of alertness and action.  Music inspires what will become art or a piece f great writing.  Music links the atoms and cells of its vehicle in grace and fluid motion, or syncopated frenzy.  Music beats out the rhythm of the heart and carries the journeyer to realms hidden and remote holding treasures of deeper mystery.  Music carves its way through the energetic fields surrounding and like the ephemeral flutter of butterfly wings, lightly etches its feathery strokes;  forever changing all in its path.

Art:

One of my daughters is an artist.  Her work is inspired y the spiritual nature of humanity.  She is often lost in the work she produces as slender hand sketches, paints and adds life to what she creates.  The visual image is a powerful tool in magickal work.  We use statues, magickal tools, candles, amulets, altars and more to bring our intent into a place of manifestation.  We empower sigils and glyphs to hold the energy they have been created to embody and we garb ourselves in the dress and style of the magick we work as form of identification.  Underlying all of these actions is the universal principle of attraction and the resonation of like with like to produce a synthesized and cohesive newly created product.

When you read her artist’ statement below, you have a sense of what is the intent for the work to be viewed. The interesting thing about this is that this statement will vary as the artist finds new routes and methods of expression each having been formulated from the foundation of the other.

My work is centered on the relationship between the human body and his/her psychological environment. The paintings store an energy and imprint of the moments in which it was made, a physical manifestation of the urge to create. The images serve as a mirror for the psyche of the viewer. Art as a viewing and making process can raise awareness and restore the unconscious struggle for internal/external union. In understanding our inner components that give way to the whole of ourselves, the better we can empathize, accept, and co-exist with our fellow man… Caitlin Fennelly, M.F.A.

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Image: Bodhissatva by Caitlin Fennelly

Art can convey the line and flow of the alchemical elements.  Color and the vibration emitted from each create imprints upon minds and are translated into our emotional stores to be accessed on mundane and spiritual work.  We are surrounded by color in varied hue and tone and the simple act of walking into a room painted in one color versus another can stir the memories of associated emotions stored as response to that particular color’s vibration.  The painting below is one I used for the cover of my book, The Elemental Year.  I had asked my daughter to paint something evocative of the four elements that would conjure the necessary connections at a subtle level. This is the power of the visual arts and their subtle yet profound impact on the way in which you in turn visualize the world around you.  This is the magick of creation pouring from one vessel into the next and available to quench the thirst of all who desire its sweet nectar.

AT10zb97Sb7Vh0jaImage: Triad by Caitlin Fennelly

Literature:

The tactile sensation of typing or putting pen to paper transfers the energy of the writer to whatever is receiving his/her imprint.  We are often told to read between the lines and in magickal terms this is more accurate than may seem.  There is contained within each letter put upon the page, a holographic image of its creator   Within that writer are the points of cellular light that have flowed through every individual and all matter from the beginning of time and creation.  We are accessing the core essence of what was the intent at the first inception of its creation.  We not only connect to the writer but we connect to the pure essence of the origin of concept. These are some of the great mysteries spoken of.  Not simply the material we see, but what is “hidden in plain sight”.

The Arts reach into the depths of our being and extract the essence of our true beauty and creative potential.  And, once acknowledged forever change how we perceive our world and our place within it. 

Resource:

To view more of Caitlin’s art:  click here 

This is the beginning of a series of articles about each of the Arts and their application and effects on Magick and spiritual practice.

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