Dana - Nelson, New Zealand
Entered on September 5, 2008
Age Group: 50 - 65

I believe in the caterpillar AND the butterfly; in the mystery of transformation.

I believe that what I believe is true. Yet I know my beliefs can change – but truth does not. My beliefs are choices I make which are appropriate to my experience and present situation.This allows space in my mind to accept the beliefs of others that are different from mine and also for my beliefs to metamorphose into more approriate ones when necessary. I used to believe it would be wonderful to have rock-like certainty and envied those with supreme confidence and no doubt. Now I suspect this might be a dangerous way of being……

In my late 40’s I made the belated decision to become a visual artist. I have always loved drawing: to become deeply absorbed by the unique arrangement of shapes, light and dark tones, textures and colours of the pattern before me is to become heart-pierced by the beauty and ultimate mystery of any aspect of nature, be it fragrant flower or solid stone. It moves me to a place of blessed silence and stillness, a sanctuary within.

Consequently,my present defining belief is that our capacity to create art is what makes us human and what makes us sacred. The creative energy that drives the evolutionary process of this unfathomable universe illuminates every cell in our bodies and creates individual and universal consciousness.

When this consciousness evolved I believe there was a whole new dimension in living organisms: the ability to be aware of self, mind, existence, alongwith the recognition of non-existence leading to philosophical and religious constructs: the ability to use magical imagination to understand mind in others, to creat meaning, to transform objects into ones more useful or beautiful, to create symbol and metaphor. All these developments in consciousness are fundamental to the practice of an art form, to the life of a human being and its self-expression.

I believe that, like the caterpillar, I can use my creative juices to dissolve ineffective mental habits, outdated reactions, destructive beliefs, and metamorphose from a groping, grub-like existence voraciously chomping my way thoughtlessly through life to a more circumspect and aware butterfly , gratefully sipping the nectar of inspiration and creativity.