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Tuesday, 04 December 2012 10:22

Meditation and Creativity

If Jackson Pollock was the archetypal boozing, tortured artist, would he have painted anything worthwhile if he had found inner peace? Or would he have been an even better painter if he had indeed found inner peace.

If Steve Jobs was the super-cool Zen creator, would Apple even have come into existence if he had not meditated?

If, as Spike Milligan said “it is all in the mind”, how does sitting quietly to train your mind through meditation build creativity?

Maybe it is because of the type of mind meditation produces.

Published in Meditation Blog
Sunday, 27 May 2012 11:05


When I was studying English literature, I remember being particularly struck by this passage in Virginia Woolf’s A Room of One’s Own:


“What is meant by ‘reality’? It would seem to be something very erratic, very undependable—now to be found in a dusty road, now in a scrap of newspaper in the street, now in a daffodil in the sun. It lights up a group in a room and stamps some casual saying. It overwhelms one walking home beneath the stars and makes the silent world more real than the world of speech—and there it is again in an omnibus in the uproar of Piccadilly. Sometimes, too, it seems to dwell in shapes too far away for us to discern what their nature is. But whatever it touches, it fixes and makes permanent. That is what remains over when the skin of the day has been cast into the hedge; that is what is left of past time and of our loves and hates.” 

Published in Meditation Blog
Monday, 08 August 2011 10:42

What elevates your spirit?

Every morning when I check my email I begin my day with reading an inspirational message called Rigpa Glimpse of the Day. (You can sign-up for free here.) A few days ago (to be exact on July 22) the message was about how we can inspire ourselves to enter into meditation. It quoted an excerpt from the section on Inspiration in chapter 5 of The Tibetan Book of Living and Dying by Sogyal Rinpoche:

Published in Meditation Blog
Remember those “aha” moments you’ve had in the past? Maybe they’ve been moments of clarity about something that you said in a discussion, or perhaps you were struggling to make a decision about your career and a different, unique and creative idea sprang into your mind.

While many of my formal meditation moments may be focused on working with remaining in the present moment and resting, as best as I can, in a state of non-distraction, without altering my mind, there are times when I’m suddenly presented with an idea worth noting or taking down for use later on, after my session is over. And, sometimes these ideas are more than just worth noting, they’re actually pretty darn good insights – they’re AHA moments!

Published in Meditation Blog
Wednesday, 15 June 2011 16:20

Contemplative photography?

Michael Wood, Amsterdam 2007
Michael Wood, Amsterdam 2007 | high-res image

Yes that’s right, contemplative photography: The Practice of Contemplative Photography by Andy Karr and Michael Wood to be precise, recently published by Shambhala. In it, an activity that too often places an overbearing emphasis on technology, equipment and technique meets two experienced meditation practitioners with an approach to the medium that focuses on developing the photographer’s clarity of perception.

Published in Meditation Blog