Man has the creative faculty, and does not merely act in the sense of imitation, but unconsciously imitates Him in making beautiful embodiments. Thus, the illumined artist has the idea deep-seated within his Being, long before it becomes formulate on the outer planes in some piece of exquisite sculpture or …drawing or painting, or even in the rhythm of motion which comes to find symphonic expression in music…
Divine Renaissance Volume 1 page 336
During various residential ‘Creativity’ sessions, those present were invited to participate in one or more of the following – art, natural movement dance, music, poetry and digital photography. In this section you will find the results of such creative endeavour.
Natural Movement Dance
NATURAL MOVEMENT DANCE
‘To dance is to find freedom and to send one’s Soul winging towards the Heights….to dance is to lose oneself and become part of the great Universe.’ Meg Wilkins
The Natural Movement Dancers in these images are all members or friends of the Fellowship The Order Of The Cross
Annea Spong was both a member of The Order Of The Cross and a teacher of NMD, Natural Movement Dance. She studied with Raymond Duncan, brother of Contemporary Dance pioneer Isadora Duncan and began a history of NMD within the Fellowship which continues to this day.
Natural Movement Dancing is a vehicle of the spirit. It prepares our bodies, minds and spirits collectively and individually to be used by a Power greater than ourselves.
The dancer finds that each gesture we make, each step we take, and everything we touch becomes centrally poised guiding us to move gracefully through life. Instead of making movement we become moved through self-abandonment.
Natural Movement Dancing prepares our bodies to be receptive vehicles for inspiration to manifest outward expression.
We read in the writings of John Todd Ferrier how:
‘… music changes the atmosphere… it changes it speedily even as it does within the heart, within the mind, within the very Soul in its motion. Music is redeeming. For you cannot receive vibrations of the Divine World without being stimulated, nourished, uplifted and enriched.’
‘To live your Life truly before Him, makes music.’
Love Ye One Another
Let all the Earth keep Silence
Music, the Great Enlivener
From time to time, one is reminded of the extraordinary power of music to enliven and refresh the Soul. Of many such instances three immediately come to mind. Following a morning’s teaching a number of colleagues were seated in the common room, looking to relax and reenergise themselves with coffee. A member of the music department entered and by contrast with the others was clearly sparkling with vitality. He had spent the morning working with the departmental choir. The rehearsal had gone well and he was overjoyed with the result. Rubbing his hands with delight he exclaimed: ‘Ah Music! It feeds the spirit.’
A television programme presented many years ago by the late Bernard Levin celebrated the 80th birthday of the pianist Arthur Rubinstein who looked and sounded what he then was, a very elderly man….until that is, he sat at the piano and began to play. A remarkable transformation took place. He appeared to be suddenly infused with a wonderful and youthful energy. I was reminded of that event when reading a tribute to the conductor Vernon Handley, which, following his passing, appeared in the Independent in September 2008.
‘At the rehearsal for his last appearance with the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra a remarkable thing happened. Handley came on to the stage, walking slowly on his two sticks. He got to the rostrum, picked up the baton – and suddenly he was the old Handley again, all traces of infirmity seeming to fall away as he conducted.’
written by RR
Language has music, rhythm, phrasing and harmony as much as music itself does. It speaks to us on many levels and we in turn use it on many levels. The daily humdrum of life, our communications with each other and the world, all these necessary practicalities are addressed in our own individual way. We listen and respond as required in any given situation, and we hope that our choice of words is productive in the way that we would wish.
The outer use of language has its correspondence when it comes to matters of the spirit, and the consideration and expression of those things that relate to the inner life.
John Todd Ferrier frequently laments that the poverty of language prevents the fuller understanding of great spiritual realities, and he touchingly apologises for his own lack of ability in this regard. What is a miracle to all of us, and a matter of real gratitude, is just how eloquent he himself is in his sublime use of language as he ‘breaks the bread’ for each one of us, thus leading us gently on the path of increasing understanding and realization of the Divine Idea.
Many enlightened poets and writers have a portion of this gift and help bring through aspects of the Divine Idea as seen from their personal view-point. The metaphysical poets seem to me to be special souls with particular qualities that enable them to link the seen with the unseen. The economy of their use of words makes their writings even more potent.
Written by JP
At some gatherings Members take part in learning, through the medium of photography, ways to celebrate the wonders of the natural world
The following was written during a session on creative writing;
I joined an inspiring session on poetry. Our leader provided numerous examples of beautiful poems as well as pictures and a wealth of other ideas for starting points for our own writing.
To start us off, she gave us the phrase ‘What a delight it is…’ to complete in our own way.
What a delight it is
To weave the rich colours and joyful music of our creativity
Into a dancing web of light;
Soul gifts brought forth to delight others
And to meditate on God.
We were encouraged to listen intently inwardly, concentrating on our chosen subject, centering our thoughts, so that writing became a meditation.
I chose to write about a mighty kauri tree I had visited in New Zealand. Kauri trees were by far the largest living things in the Maori world and were given names and held as sacred. It is no wonder, for the largest now standing, Tane Mahuta (Lord of the Forest) began its life 2000 years ago.
Its trunk measures over 60 feet around and hardly tapers for the next 50 feet. Its huge branches, towering high above the forest canopy, support a garden of their own; vines, orchids, moss and ferns. One cannot but feel a sense of awe in its presence, seeing our own Soul growth reflected in the life of this tree.
The following poem is not a polished piece of work, but offered as an illustration of an afternoon’s creative writing while sitting under another lovely tree :
TANE MAHUTA (Tah nay Ma hoo tah)
Unseen, unwitnessed, deep in the forest,
Deep in the damp, dark earth;
Long ages ago, unfurling, uncurling,
Tane Mahuta was born.
All around him were giants; tall, mighty presences,
Kauri trees seeking the heavens.
He gazed in wonder, yearning upwards,
Aspiring to what he could be.
In the damp, dark earth his roots delved deeper,
Anchor in fierce, wild storms
That came to buffet and toss his canopy.
He flexed and bent in the wind.
Roots creeping surely, outwards, down,
Seeking nourishment, drinking deep.
Life-force pulsing through mighty conduits
Gathering power to rise.
Straight and true his trunk soared upwards,
Fed from riches gathered in.
Emerald ferns within his branches
Adorned his outspread limbs.
Great now in stature, vast and aged,
Lord of the Forest, Tane Mahuta,
In silence blessing, overshadowing,
Inspiring reverence, stillness, peace.” EH