2017 Reading List | Book 25 of 52
The Artist’s Way
“Creativity requires faith. Faith requires that we relinquish control.”
After graduate school, I began playing the violin with different artists. I would play in bars, restaurants, and recording studios. I played quite often and started questioning where the music came from. I was improvising along with the artists. Most of the time, I had never heard the songs before. I began to notice something quite peculiar. When I thought really hard about what I wanted to play at a given time, it never came out right. But, if I let go and just let the music come through me, I was amazed at the result. I would play things I didn’t know I could play. It would be smooth. But it wasn’t coming from me.
It caused me to question where it came from. My conclusion was that it came from God. One of the first glimpses we get of God in the Bible is one of a creator. God created man and woman in His image. If God is a creative being and we are in His image, we are also creative beings. I began to study artists and musicians and see where they got their inspiration. Time after time, I would hear artists say that they either didn’t know where their inspiration came from or that came through them. They were the conduit. They had to leave the door open and let God in.
Julia Cameron’s premise in The Artist’s Way is the same. The book starts out with the statement:
“Art is a spiritual transaction.”
She goes on to say:
“I learned to get out of the way and let that creative force work through me.”
If the artist is blocked, un-blocking requires a spiritual re-connection. This book contains 12 chapters of how to recover the spiritual path to higher creativity. Julia Cameron has helped millions on this path. The book is a combination of practical tips, suggested habits, and a new mindset.
I read through this book rather quickly – in one week. The 12 chapters of recovery are meant to encompass 12 weeks. I would have gotten a lot more out of the book had I taken more time and maybe I will do that in the future. Even with the quick read, I enjoyed the exercises and the suggested habits.