I stand in front of a blank sheet of beautiful Washi paper, brush in hand. Sumi ink, green gold and brown ochre watercolors have been watered down to a consistency I like. White acrylic paint is at the ready.
I breath long and deep. I close my eyes. I clear my mind of expectations and plans.
When I open my eyes, my body takes over and before I know it, my hand is moving across the paper with the Sumi ink. Ah – I am delighted. I love the mark it made.
It wants more and I see my hand bravely adding the brown ochre and before I catch my breath a dash of white has been added.
Fortunately, I stop. I close my eyes and breath long and deep. I clear my mind and when I open my eyes, I love what I see.
On my best days, I stop at the right moment. To me, it feels complete. It breathes. It has movement.
On other days, I let my critical eye and mind take over. Before I have time to stop and breathe, My mind says it’s too simple; it needs more. I add and add – until the painting has become a complicated mess.
On those days, perhaps I am learning the most important thing. I am learning to feel that subtle difference between when it is my mind and when it is the divine in motion.
In the rush of my other life, my outer life, it’s always helpful to stop, breathe long and deep, clear my mind, and notice the feeling. Am I using my rational, analytical, critical mind or am I allowing the intuitive, the divine, to come into this part of my life as well.