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The Healing Power of Art

Jim Dine, artist. "Four Hearts" 1969

Jim Dine, artist. “Four Hearts” 1969

Creativity can be deeply healing. A wise colleague told me that in his 30 years as a healer he never saw a person with growths in the body who didn’t also have repressed creativity. This makes sense. We are born to create. Whether we design, invent, paint, draw, color, write, sculpt, build, weave, bake, or tend a garden, creative energy needs an outlet. Let’s talk about the healing power of art.

The first law of thermodynamics states that energy is neither created nor destroyed but is changed from one form to another. The energy inherent in the desire to create is given outward expression and transformed into a song, a garden, a new deck, a soup. We don’t have to think of creativity only in the form of art such as painting. When we watch children they show us a variety of creative expression. Maybe you pushed your creativity aside as you grew older, but your ability to create something new is still there.

When creativity is held inside it’s like a stream blocked by a dam. The water has no place to go. When a stream is blocked, it changes into a puddle or a pond. There isn’t any forward movement, only stagnation. What if the same thing happens in the human body when creativity has no place to go? Since creativity can be seen as energy, a force desirous of movement, what happens when it’s blocked? Could it contribute to growths in the body?

Do you remember a time when you created effortlessly? What did you love? Colored pencils, fabric, paint, clay, daydreaming, crayons, crafts, yarn, dirt, plants, and flowers? Take a moment to remind yourself of all the ways you loved to create. Which of these could you begin again?

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