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The Soul and Creativity

SHARE ON THE AIR RADIO  #18                      February 21, 2016

This is a rush transcript. Copy may not be in its final form.

Title: The Soul and Creativity

Host: CIELITO PASCUAL   Guest: GINA BLICKENSTAFF

Colorado artist Gina Blickenstaff shares her insights on the true purpose of the soul, our role as creative beings, and why the power of sharing will help humanity experience a renaissance of creativity.

Cielito: Welcome to our listeners around the world. I am your host Cielito Pascual podcasting from Seattle, Washington and I want to thank my co-host, Diana-Gold-Holland and our producer, Frances Oman for helping Share on the radio for helping for the past couple of Sundays. If you are joining us for the very first time, welcome. Something world-changing is happening now and we explore that event on this show. We talk to ordinary people who have certain insight and understanding of this event from different perspectives and, on OMTIMES radio, we have a whole archives of our past programs that you’ll be able to enjoy, streaming for free on OM TIMES radio and you’ll hear an extraordinary range thought-provoking views on what’s happening in the world and what’s happening behind the scenes of the events that we’re reading about in the news. Just click on “free archives” on our page on Share on the air radio and click on the icon that says” Listen now.”

    On this show today, we will explore what creativity and the soul connect to and why this connection is available to all of us and not just artists and, as we do on every show, we’re going to explore what this means for humanity because exploring what is happening to humanity today this very minute is extremely pertinent when we’re going through transformation right now and it’s important to understand what’s going on. Joining me today is artist and painter Gina Blickenstaff from Colorado whose work has been exhibited around the U.S. and she has been awarded at the international level. Gina is also a student of the esoteric teachings of Alice Bailey and Benjamin Crème and she will explain how art and spirituality are expressed both through her work and her life. Welcome, Gina! Thank you for being on the show.

Gina: Thank you, Cielito. It’s truly an honor to be here. I think you guys are doing an amazing job and I want to thank you and Diana and everybody who’s standing behind you for creating this opportunity to participate.

Cielito: I’m really excited because we’re presenting a topic that we’ve never presented before and that is on creativity. I’ve seen your work and, if our listeners go to our Facebook page Share on the air radio North America, they’ll be able to see beautiful paintings from Gina’s body of work so if you’re able to click there now, you’ll get a fuller experience of what Gina’s here to share with us. Let’s begin with: how do you define creative expression, Gina?

Gina: Well, to my mind, I think it just comes from a personal inventiveness, you know, taking a new path that you haven’t taken before, following a deep inner urge as opposed to copying things that other people are doing, saying or feeling. It’s bringing forth your own unique expression in the world. That would be my take on that.

Cielito: And most of us would think, “Oh, I can’t draw. “ “Painting isn’t my thing.” or “I can’t carry a tune.” So, you’re talking about something that’s more than just…it’s really following your heart.

Gina: Right. Exactly. I think the whole universe is creative and everybody is expressing that creativity in a different way, you know, and people have been on your show are very adept at what they do and using the creative faculties they have to create that beauty and that education sharing it with the world and I think that’s all creative expression.

Cielito: That makes sense but if we can go into a little more depth of understanding, of hearing a connection between creativity and a sense of wellbeing. Why are those two connected and why might they be missing today in most people’s lives?

Gina: Well, you know, the soul is all creative, all loving, all wise. The more we link up with our souls via the antakharana which is the bridge from the mind to the soul when you’re meditating, you know the more you have access to those of qualities of the soul and we become more creative, we become more loving, we become more wise. I think it’s  very satisfying in this way because we’re carrying out the purpose of our soul and that helps us to evolve spiritually and I think that’s our goal so it’s what we strive for.

Cielito: Why does creativity come through the connection with the soul? Why do you think that occurs?

Gina: I don’t know but I think there’s a timeless river of the sweetest and most pure energy flowing just below the surface of our material world and we live in a world of moving atoms. Everything is connected and it’s all one and we just have to learn to access that finer vibration and we do this through the concentrated effort and attention of the creative imagination. I think it’s all connected and that’s how we function. I’ve been reading more about it actually and I didn’t even really realize how important the creative faculty is in form-building and creating the forms in which we build our lives and build that new culture that we live in. It’s a very interesting subject actually that I never really thought about because I just get up in the morning and I paint.

Cielito: For you, it’s like breathing.

Gina: Yes. Exactly.

Cielito: So, to put it into words, I will say that I invited a musician to be on this show and you expressed the same sentiment that he expressed. It’s almost impossible to talk about when you’re an artist because the creative impulse, it’s an impulse. It’s not something that one puts into words.

Gina: Right. It’s so ingrained. I mean, I started to try to teach to get more income but I realized that I can’t teach beginners because I have no idea how I know how to paint. I just always knew how to paint and I have a very good capacity for seeing things in three dimensions, a great sense of color and, you know, I can see things that other people can’t obviously see and it’s really hard for me to like, explain that.

Cielito: I don’t want to make you uncomfortable but we’re searching for and what we’re exploring is the way our listeners can explore that every act is a creative act in every day. There are, oftentimes, the demands of life disperses any seeming way to be creative because we’re just trying to manage this and manage that and get to this place on time and get this thing in on a deadline and we lose the sense of our ability to be unique in the moment so we’re going to explore that more in the show and explore the power of connecting with the soul and access that creativity. A lot of people think that spirituality, to go to the topic of spirituality, that spirituality and the material world are separate. Where do see creativity playing a role in bridging the two?

Gina: Well, like I said, I think it’s all connected. It’s right under the surface, this place of peace. We just cloud this up with all this junk that you just mentioned and we have to make an effort to tap in and I think we do that through meditation and even the recent article in Share-International—the interview with the guy who’s talking about the economy for all. I forget what his name is. I wrote it down and now I can’t remember it.

Cielito: Share-International magazine and that’s at Share-International.org so our listeners can refer to. That’s what you mean.

Gina: Right. I mean, he’s a globalization critic. That’s how they entitled him but he is basically saying that he experienced the oneness of all when he was young and he’s just trying to nurture that and that’s where he gets his intuitive faculty to help the world. It comes from a universality feeling of…. Do we have to go to break?

Cielito: Yes. This is something very important we can focus on so, listeners, stay with us. In our upcoming segments, we’re going to talk about the purpose of the soul, why we’re here and how our creativity expresses through that. Stay with us.

Cielito: Welcome back. I am Cielito Pascual with our guest Gina Blickenstaff discussing creativity and its connection to the soul. Do you, and I’m glad you mentioned Share-International magazine, because this show is inspired by that. Our listeners can go to Share-international.org where you can refer to a whole range of topics, not just on creativity and the soul but information about what we talk about every week, the information coming from Benjamin Crème on the emergence of the Masters of Wisdom and Maitreya, the World Teacher. But to just step back a bit, Gina…

Gina: I found the information on this guy if you want me to finish that thought, about Christian Velber(?) but we can move on, if you prefer.

Cieito: OK. I’ll let the listeners refer to that online because we do want to talk about your background. Talk about how young you were when you realized that art was important to you. How did art begin to show up in your life?

Gina: When I was born, I was born with a paintbrush in my hand. My parents were both classically trained professional artists so I didn’t really have a chance. They were just there and, you know, my dad was in his studio and my mom was at her art desk all the time and then I helped them, leaned over them and watched them work and they remained my best critics my whole life and supported me in everything I did creatively and so I didn’t haven’t have any conflict. My biggest conflict was just my own insecurity and not wanting to compete when I went into junior high school. It was a bigger school with more artists and I thought, “I’m just going to go and be a forest ranger” or something. Then, when I was a mid-teenager, I walked something into a friend of a friend’s father’s professional art studio and I smelled the paint and thought,“ Oh! This going to be my life.” And I just knew that there was where I was going to go so…

Cielito: You mentioned, as you got into school, there were more kids. Were you in an art school? Did your parents put you in an art school?

Gina: No, not in high school. Just a regular high school in New York. I grew up in New York.

Cielito: Ok. Other fellow talents in the class… As an artist, you’re a creator of things. You have total control over the thing and what was that experience you mentioned? Maybe it was a feeling of intimidation, maybe compared by teachers to other artists? Was there a particular experience around that that affected how you regarded being creative and being an artist?

Gina: Not really. I just think that when I was really young in grade school, I was kind of known as the artistic one because I was just good at it from an early age but then when I went into junior high school, it was not just my elementary school that graduated into that school. There were three other schools and all this competition because of all these other kids and I just freaked out and I said, ”No! I can’t do this!” I just kind of chickened out for several years.

Cielito: Which is kind of the experience of school in general because school is based on comparing and competing, comparing oneself and one’s teachers, comparing oneself to the other students and it can be traumatic for creativity. I can understand that.

       When we talked earlier, you mentioned you began meditating at the age of fifteen. What drew you in? Were your parents involved in  meditation? Did they raise you in a spiritual practice?

Gina: Well, my parents got divorced when I was eleven so I didn’t have that much over the years but my dad kind of defined himself as an existentialist and my mom was kind of a New Age-y person and I was into all kinds of bizarre things-Eastern religions and Seth Speaks, Ramptha and all kinds of crazy things so I just had kind of an open mind and I just went where the wind blew me, so to speak, and I went to a meeting on Transcendental Meditation when I was fifteen and I saw these people sitting on the stage and they were perfectly still on these wooden chairs and thought that was so cool. They were so quiet and my little voice said, “I want to be like that.” And I signed up for Transcendental Meditation for my whole adult life until I got involved in this work and  Transmission Meditation but I still do a personal meditation which is very similar to Transcendental Meditation as well as doing Transmission Meditation.

Cielito: And we’ve talked about Transmission Meditation before on this show, well, on every show, we talk about it because it is the most potent meditation for ourselves and for the world and we’ll talk about that in a later segment. But let’s fast forward a little bit. How did you come across the information from Benjamin Crème, the author Benjamin Creme? He’s published a dozen and a half  books as I mentioned on the emergence of the Great Elders of humanity emerging on the world stage to guide us out of the tremendous challenges we’re faced with —environmentally, politically, socially, economically—everything’s that’s coming to the surface today. You said that you came across… you attended a lecture. Can you describe that experience?

Gina: Well, I was basically dragged to Benjamin Creme’s lecture in 1982 by someone in my life who was involved in a lot of very bizarre things. I mean, he was telling me about a civilization that he believed was inside the earth and things like that and I didn’t take him seriously and I went to the lecture and, on the way I said, “Well, this is going to be dumb. This is dumb” to myself, not to him, but the whole time, I was just sitting at the edge of my seat. I was completely enthralled. I thought, “This man is speaking the truth.” It had the ring of truth for me. He seemed so genuine and I had visual experiences that I never had in my life before. The room kind of changed to a kind of rosy color and it felt so quiet and people were kind of moving in slow motion and you could hear a pin drop everywhere and it was a very unusual experience and it just changed my life because he was talking about being of service to humanity and saying we have a responsibility to humanity and I was never taught that. You know, I grew up in a pretty selfish household and kind of every man for himself and I wasn’t taught to share my toys with underprivileged kids or anything like that and all of a sudden, this man is giving me a purpose and some guidance and I can tell you now, just knowing Ben and  his feelings about that has just grown me up in so many ways and matured me and I thank him, you know, from the bottom of my heart for really enlarging that whole concept for me and bringing it to the front of my mind.

Cielito: You mentioned to me, when we talked earlier, about an experience that other guests that we’ve had have  experienced when they attended a lecture and I want to let our listeners know, unfortunately, Benjamin Crème no longer travels due to health but we do have a number of video excerpts from his lectures that are online and, again,  by visiting Share-Internaional.org, one can view Mr. Crème speaking on many topics pertinent to what’s happening for humanity right now. So, if you can speak of that experience, because we’ve had guests—there was Betsy Whitfill, on January 17 for our listeners, who described her experience on our show and on our December 6 show, journalist Patricia Pitchon also described a very, very moving experience. So, what did you experience?

Gina: Well, right after that lecture, I got involved with the group, a small group of people who brought Ben to speak. They were having Transmission Meditation on a regular basis so I started meditating with them but I noticed that they had a conviction about who Maitreya was and I didn’t and I made an inward plea. I said, “If you’re real, I want to know.” And then, not long after that, I was in a very deep meditation and I was just overcome with this tremendous energy and I couldn’t breathe, my chest was all expanded and there were tears streaming down my face. I had meditated my whole life so I knew what my own energy felt like, what my own soul connection felt like, but this was different. It was somebody in my space and I never felt that before and the two keynotes that I remember from that experience was that this was a familiar person in my space and Maitreya says, in His Messages, that, “ I am an old friend. I’ve taught you many times before” and that’s exactly what I felt in that and the other thing was that He was, that He could see through me with His unconditional love and everything, and that what He saw, was fine.

Cielito: And we’ll continue after the break with break with Gina and the soul and its creativity. Stay with us.

Cielito: And we’re back on Share on the air radio. I’m Cielito Pascual with Gina Blickenstaff, artist and painter and we are discussing creativity and the soul. I would like to read a quote from Benjamin Crème’s book. He’s published, as I said, about eighteen books, and this is from “The Art of Living” and it’s actually a quote from Benjamin Crème’s Master,” Up until now, a truly creative life has been the privilege of the few. In this coming time, the untapped creativity will add a new luster to the achievements of man. Emerging from the darkness of exploitation and fear, in true, correct relationship, each man will find within himself the purpose and the joy of living.” And again, that’s from “The Art of Living” by Benjamin Crème. It’s a quote from his Master and, of course, the reference to man is not the gender man but the race of man which includes every man, woman and child.

    Gina, you’re talking about the experience of unconditional love that you had when you made a request of Maitreya and I’d like you to talk about that experience and how it influenced your painting because today, you focus on depicting relationship and love.

Gina: Right. Well, I don’t think that… I think the main thrust of change in my painting came through my years of being involved in Transmission Meditation because that brings in the intuition and the intuition brings in, you know, the concept of universality and the oneness of all humanity and I think my work has taken a turn towards that in socially conscious paintings. I like to paint relationships. I don’t like to paint single people in a painting, you know. I paint more than one person in a painting, the relationship they’re having, the love relationship they’re having which sets me apart from a good deal of other painters and I think that comes from the connection I have with this information but certainly, that experience with Maitreya set me on a whole, new path and I knew where my life was going and I knew the real purpose of my life. It wasn’t just service work but was helping Maitreya to come into the world and making opportunities for people to know about Maitreya and I’ve painted Maitreya in my paintings and people ask me, “Who’s that person in the painting?” and I get a chance to talk about Maitreya so it’s all connecting. I’m trying to merge my spiritual life with my art life and it just kind of happens naturally anyway. I don’t have to make much of an effort. It’s just a natural. I do spend a lot of time doing regular stuff –trying to make grocery money, landscapes and still lifes and stuff but really special paintings have to do with Maitreya and the concepts of sharing in the world and I love what you said, that quote, because, you know, personally, when I step into a hot shower, I just pray that everyone in the world can have a hot shower anytime they want because I think if anyone could have a hot shower whenever they wanted, there would be no war. Of course, this is a very simplistic and symbolic idea because it pertains to all the gifts and rights of a blessed human life one should have, you know, food, shelter, health care and education and I just think how creativity would  flower in a world where everyone’s needs are met and, you know, it would be a damn renaissance for the human family and that’s just kind of where I go with that thought. I want people to wake up to these concepts of sharing just like Maitreya does. I mean, I do it on my little level. He does it on a great, big, world-wide scale.

Cielito: And I just want, for our listeners and anyone listening for the first time at this moment, Maitreya has, under the guise of an ordinary person, Maitreya, the World Teacher, Who’s considered the Elder Brother of our great Elders, the Masters of Wisdom, has appeared, goodness, in at least one hundred and fifty interviews on the media in the U.S., in Russia, in China, in Mexico and I encourage our listeners to pay attention to the news, to pay attention to the people speaking on sharing, pay attention to those who are fighting for social justice and anyone involved in that work at any level whether it’s the community or the city level or the national level, anyone involved in fighting for human dignity has the help of Maitreya and the Masters behind them and certainly when you look at what’s happening in the world, we’re seeing an increasing momentum of ordinary people such as yourself and everyone we interview, whether they know this story of Maitreya, whether they read the books of Benjamin Crème, are standing up for the dignity of all humans, the fundamental rights of shelter and food and health care and education. And I love what you say that when those basic needs are met, creativity will flower. If you have to walk four hours to get clean water, five hours for clean water, there’s no time for creativity. There’s no time to rest and rejuvenate to what you so beautifully described as this timeless river, rarefied, flowing below the surface of all forms, something that we all have access to if we’re not burdened just trying to maintain a roof over our heads and a roof over our family’s heads so this is where it all ties into the future of humanity. The gifts, at this moment, people are not able to tap into these creative gifts. We have far fewer artists, far fewer scientists, far fewer teachers because the wealth of the world is concentrated among very few people. This is an imbalance that Maitreya has urged us to begin to correct. He believes we have the capacity to make that correction. No one’s coming to save us. We will do the heavy lifting so if anyone has any inclination to make the world a better place, you’re doing the right thing.

    That’s a segue into why we’re really here. What would you say is the purpose of the soul, Gina?

Gina: Well, on that note, pretty much, I can’t imagine a soul whose goal is to come into incarnation and to sit around watching a football game on TV all day and I’m the kind of person that likes to distill things down to the basic ingredient which to my mind is love. I say, “Love is the answer now what was the question?” and we’re living in a sad and dark world, you know, where the rich are parading their wealth in front of the poor and people are starving to death because of the greed and the lack of attention from the forces that be and this is just a situation of a deep lack of love and, to me, that’s why we keep the soul off the recliner and propel them forward into action. That’s just our reason. That’s all I can figure out  that why we’re here is to change what is into a more loving situation so we can all evolve and do whatever it is we’re supposed to be doing on a higher level.

Cielito: And love is inherent to our being. Love is the glue that holds everything together. We’ve limited that definition of love to something else and it’s become distorted because certain numbers of us own and control certain things and certain numbers of us don’t own and control certain things so there’s no access. There’s distortion.

Gina: It’s like just like those material things. If I could just add something about that because we were talking about that earlier about the experience of the unconditional love that I felt in that moment with Maitreya because it was like “I’m OK with who I am. He knows all the deep, dark secrets about me. He knows my insecurities, my detriments and everything and everything was OK” and we’re weighed down also, not only by our own complaints about ourselves, but everybody else’s complaints about us, you know, the criticisms of those closest to us and near and dear to us and all that and those are very powerful things that are very detrimental to each other. You know, the gossip and everything that brings us down and I experience that tremendous love. We say we love each other at this level but it’s nothing like I felt in that moment. That was a very, very high register of a different kind of love and I think meditation, you know, brings you into this focus of understanding of when you are having access to true intuition through those soul levels, there’s no competition and there’s no…all those things just kind of fall away and you can really see what’s at the basis of everything and you learn to be more loving so it all works together, not just lack of food. It’s the lack of love for each other that clouds us and then we can’t be creative because we’re just reeling, we’re just in grief all the time or hating ourselves or whatever and that’s very detrimental to the creative process as well.

Cielito: It keeps us preoccupied on things that aren’t moving us forward. We’re going into a break and in our last segment, let’s talk more to Gina about meditation and how that facilitates the demonstration of soul quality in the world. Come back  with usafter the break. Go to Facebook- Share on the air radio North America. If you have any questions, you can post them there.

Cielito: We’re here on Share on the air radio. I’m Cielito Pascual. We’re talking with Gina Blickenstaff about creativity and the soul and, you know, Gina, a lot of times we try to complicate things. We’re human, we have a brain and we try to complicate things and the reality is, things are pretty simple. When we talk about the purpose of the soul, I love what Benjamin Crème has said in his books and I’m sure Alice A. Bailey has said the same in her books, that the purpose of the soul really, is to spiritualize matter. That’s why we’re here. That’s why we incarnate life after life. Each one is gradually bringing more light to matter until matter becomes light. Of course, that’s a process that requires all of us, that requires us on the path of evolution of  humanity and…

Gina: Benjamin Creme has said, I think it was him that said,” All of our structures, our political and economic and social structures, should all be divine”and this is accomplished by the use of the creative imagination so, that’s a big job.

Cielito:  Being divine. What does that mean? Being divine? How does the beautiful system be divine?

Gina: I don’t know. Make it light somehow. Make your structures out of light. You know, require all your employees to meditate or something.

Cielito: Well, right now, our political systems are honoring markets, honoring money .Our political systems are economic. Our educational systems do not honor the human being. Everything is for profit. This is why we’re seeing such extraordinary dissatisfaction in the world because our systems are not, politics is not speaking to us as human beings and people are responding in extraordinary ways. But let’s go, in our final segment, and talk about Transmission Meditation. In the opening, you mentioned the antakharana. Tell us what that is. Our listeners may not know that.

Gina: Well, without having a scientific background, I’ve known this to be just this bridge established through years of meditation and it connects the brain with the soul and when you’re meditating, you can receive energies from the soul via this bridge and then it helps you become more soul-infused and that’s what I’ve experienced  and that’s what everybody who meditates experiences and, to me, the difference between Transcendental Meditation and Transmission Meditation is that Transcendental Meditation is a personal meditation and Transmission Meditation is a group service meditation and there’s a difference in a very simple way that I understand it. In a personal meditation, you receive energies from your own soul, you know, via that antakharana and in Transmission Meditation, we’re working in cooperation with the Masters of Wisdom Who are pouring Their energy through us. We might be receiving energy from our own soul, too. I’m assuming we probably do but we’re also receiving, we’re transmitting energies from the Masters Who are pouring Their energies through our chakras in a very scientific manner during the course of the meditation and it creates a pool of light which They can use to help the world, however They do and it’s a very powerful form of meditation. I find it extremely powerful and transforming and Benjamin Crème even calls it a “hothouse” of spiritual evolution because it has the effect of speeding up your evolution. It’s a forcing process. That’s what he says and I’ve kind of find that to be true, I think, for myself, anyway.

Cielito: And that’s because Transmission  Meditation is based on two yogas—Karma Yoga, the yoga of karma like you just said. You mentioned the speeding up of evolution when one is burning off karma, one speeds up one’s evolution and Laya Yoga is the other stream of energy involved here. It’s the yoga of energies. So, you’ve got the meditation as a form of service to humanity, it’s Karma Yoga, it’s Laya Yoga, you’re receiving planetary and cosmic energies from the Masters so for all those reasons, it’s extremely powerful.

    You touched upon this before and I think it’s important to emphasize as well. What is the importance of creating between the brain or the personality and the soul? That antakharana. Creating that bridge. What is made available that is not ordinarily there?

Gina: Well, a lot of us want to go around being just the personality but those of us on the spiritual path don’t want to go around being a kind of dumb personality. We want to transcend all those desires and the silliness of the personality and a Master has control over the personality in which we don’t.

Cielito: Their own personality. They don’t control our personality.

Gina: Right. That’s what I meant. So, I think it’s just a goal of evolution, of spiritual evolution. I don’t know any other way to put it. The soul is the place to go. You know, I’ve know this since I was a kid that this was the place that my answers come from. This is the place I go to to figure out problems, my “safe place.” You know, I had several years of traumas in my life and this was the only place I could go where I felt at home, you know, when the world was falling away around me and I just spent a lot of time in meditation because it was my “ safe place”.

Cielito: Let’s talk about that right now. You have been through a lot and a lot of people who are listening are going through a lot. It’s a trying time for many of us for many different reasons. Would you be willing to talk about how art and meditation and exactly how what you’ve been through in the past five years and how art and meditation have helped you?

Gina: Well, I just experienced a lot of loss, you know, and it’s too complicated to go into in two minutes but I found the two things that helped me survive being like suicidal for two years, was meditation and painting. I never stopped painting. It was the thing that helped me survive and the reason, I know now, was that when I was painting, I’m in another place and I painted this big blue painting which is on the Facebook page and my girlfriend said, “How can you paint such a joyful painting when your mother is dying?’ I actually painted like four giant, colored still lifes during that time and I said, “Because I just go to a different place. I put my music down and I can be somewhere else on soul levels that’s invoking the intuition and being somewhere else.” That’s what happens when I meditate, too. So, I realize that the painting is serving the same as the meditation for me and those two things  have been the mainstay for me and if I didn’t have those two things, I’d be gone by now. I’d be dead or something . So, I would really encourage that for people who are suffering because I don’t know what I would have done because I kept saying to myself : what would I have done if I wasn’t an artist and didn’t have my studio to go into to help me ge through this, you know, if I wasn’t a meditator and I think it’s a very, very important modality for people as well as helping you help to save the world by becoming more spiritual, which helps other people become more spiritual when we learn to share the resources of the world and everybody else.

Cielito: And also by just sharing your story now, Gina,it gives us courage to step forward and have courage and demonstrate the qualities of the soul and even if the people around me don’t appear to value that all. Someone is watching. Someone’s saying, “How’s Gina’s getting through all thisShe painted this beautiful painting. How did she do that?” So, what a beautiful service to those around us to be creative in spite of circumstances because that requires courage. That requires a willingness to focus and many of us are waiting for another person to demonstrate that courage so we can step forward, too. So, on a personal level, it serves tremendously. You talked earlier about painting  in solitude and your concern that that was a selfish act and you came around from that because you realized something.

Gina: I realized that somebody else was completely in love with my painting and when I saw her being in love with my painting, I realized that that’s how I feel about music and all of a sudden, it made sense to me—the purpose of being an artist— because I felt really stupid just sitting there . I felt useless in my studio all day by myself painting these silly paintings and I didn’t know why I was doing that. What was the purpose?I didn’t feel that I was being of service and when I saw her being uplifted, I realized that that’s how music uplifts me and that’s the purpose of art. If you’re uplifting, you’re inspiring to teach, you know, to give people new perspective and I realized, “OK, that’s a great purpose. I’m OK with that.”

Cielito: And that’s a wonderful way to end our show. Thank you, Gina, so much for offering so many insights.

Gina: It meant a lot to be here. Thank you so much.

Cielito: Next week we’ll have Gary Dorko who’ll speak from a scientific point of view. He’s a layman who’s paying attention to what scientists are saying, rejecting many things that science used to be attached to. It’ll be a great show.Goodbye!

END

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