My SoulWork is…SoulWork. I believe with all my soul that each of us has a Great Work to do, and a unique Path through life. Too many of us get herded onto a one-size-fits-all freeway with predefined stops and a set speed limit. No one ever tells us we could choose anything else – and if we find out on our own, Fear, Uncertainty, and Doubt are right there to make sure we stay on the highway with everyone else.
My SoulWork project is my business, Tangled Spirits Studio. It is a container that will (eventually) offer a community art space where everyone – not just the eccentric few – are welcomed and invited to make art. It also holds my central curriculum, the 13-moon Life Path Vision Quest, and the blog and youtube channel that will allow me to reach out to Beloveds across the world and invite them to find their paths.
Three Pillars of SoulWork
Tangled Spirits Studio is based on three pillars that support the ultimate goal: the Beloved who lives their life in accordance with their highest truth. Those three pillars are:
The pillar of health encompasses four equal aspects:
- Mental Health – the ability to think clearly, to plan and carry out activities, to understand the world accurately, and to learn effectively.
- Emotional Health – the ability to regulate one’s emotional state and to effectively honor and work within the emotional realm, rather than being at the mercy of emotional tides or forcing or controlling the emotional state to avoid pain.
- Spiritual Health – the ability to recognize and relate to the spiritual, in whatever way makes sense or calls to the individual.
- Physical Health – the state of being free from pain, fatigue, illness, and in a state where the body functions well.
If any of these aspects is missing or in a state of dis-ease, the others will suffer as well.
Our existing health system tends to segregate these aspects. I see them, and experience them, as necessarily integrated. I have personally experienced that emotional trouble will manifest in physical fatigue or pain. Physical illness will make it hard for me to think clearly (affecting my mental health), which upsets my emotional state. The Self is an integrated ecosystem, and it’s time we treated it as such. My experience is primarily in the Mental, Emotional, and Spiritual realms, so I will need to refer Beloveds to others if the Physical is an area that needs to be seriously addressed.
I believe that this devaluation of the individual path is at the root of much of the mental/emotional illness we experience – specifically in the realms of depression, anxiety, and drug abuse (which is often a symptom of the others). When we are living lives that are fundamentally out of alignment with who we are, our gifts, and our passions, anxiety and depression are predictable responses.
Before we can begin to rebuild a life based on individualized choices, we have to rebuild the self and strengthen mental and emotional health. But making those choices based on individual truth is an integral part of the healing and strengthening process! This is where Intentional Creativity comes in. IC processes allow us to be stronger than we really are, and lean into a future choice on paper or canvas, then draw actual healing and strength from the process, allowing us to make the choice we practiced creatively. It’s not linear, but I’m beginning to learn that life is not as linear as we’d been led to believe!
I have personally experienced the profound healing available in Intentional Creativity, just in the act of putting brush to canvas with intention. This experience is a beginning, and an important offering to my Beloveds, who are suffering and don’t necessarily see a way out.
In the Western world, we have been losing our connection with the Divine over the last decades. In some ways, this is a good thing – the connection we had was becoming rote and impersonal. We grew up going to Church on Sundays and forgetting about the Divine until next week. I’ve seen a resurgence in the last several years, especially among women. We crave connection with the Divine. It’s part of what makes us human. For a while, we became too sophisticated to dance around a bonfire and listen to the whispers of the spirits. As many of us begin (or continue) our search for Spirit, it isn’t enough to simply go through the motions on a Sunday morning. We need a deep, personal connection with Spirit, that speaks to us from the deepest part of ourselves.
Intentional Creativity is a pathway to that voice, a way of listening.
I have planned a monthly Faces of the Feminine mixed media Intentional Creativity class to introduce the Divine Feminine to my Beloveds. My hope through this class is to show the many faces of Spirit.
Happiness, fulfillment, deep peace. These are the inevitable results of living a life aligned with your unique truths. I’ve always believed that as long as I was doing the work I was meant to do, that I would be at peace and would be happy – maybe not every moment of every day, but my life would be well-lived. This is my deepest wish for my Beloveds.
This type of deep peace and fulfillment comes with self-knowledge and inquiry. I’ve designed my 13-moon Life Path Vision Quest around the fundamental inquiry of “How Will I Create My LifePath?”
The Vision Quest cycles through three realms (Mystic, Healing, and Visionary) and five feminine archetypes (Maiden, Lover, Mother, Crone, and Queen). Within each cycle, there is ritual, reading or study, an Intentional Creativity painting process, and journaling.
Our society is not designed to support the type of individual choice that I advocate for. Instead, we value each other for our careers and our paychecks, rather than for our contributions and our gifts. I imagine a world in which the mother, the artist, and the CEO can come together as equals and support each other. We have a long way to go, but we can only begin if we begin.
This pillar is about advocacy. I intend to use a portion of the profit from paid classes and painting sales to support the following work:
- Eliminating poverty through feminine entrepreneurship and universal basic income projects.
- Removing barriers to mental/emotional illness supports by making Intentional Creativity healing available as widely as I can.
- Eliminating the stigma of mental/emotional illness and promoting neurodiversity inclusivity by telling the stories and featuring the work of neurodiverse artists.
- Promoting creativity education in schools. I would like to see creativity taught with the same emphasis as math and reading, because I believe that in the near future creativity will be the most fundamental skill we can give our children, as we move into a post-work society.
- Promoting a post-work society, in which we no longer define and value ourselves by our jobs. I see this as a crucial need in the next several decades, as automation makes human labor at all levels less necessary.
My Beloveds are women and children/teens who struggle with anxiety and/or depression, and who do not have access to, or are not well-served by traditional talk therapy. I also care deeply about helping those who are faced with the question of “what to do now?” after a layoff, finishing school, etc.
Tangled Spirits Studio will exist on both the physical and virtual planes. It will begin virtually, both because of practical necessity and because that will allow me to bring this work to those who need it quickly. For the next several years, my classes and workshops will be held online, and I will be working to give them the same impact as a live class.
When the time is right, I plan to open a physical space that will house workshops, open studio space, and a gallery.