To consider creativity is to consider the most elemental, innermost and deeply spiritual aspects of our beings.  Meister Eckhart asks: “What is it that remains?”  And his answer is: “That which is inborn in me remains.”  That which we give birth to from our depths is that which lives on after us.  What is inborn in us constitutes our most intimate moments—intimate with self, with God the Creative Spirit and with others.  To speak of creativity is to speak of profound intimacy.  Through our creativity we connect to the Divine in us and bring the Divine back to the community.

Video artists at a Cosmic Mass. Photographer unknown; private collection

This is true whether we understand our creativity to be begetting and nourishing our children, making music, doing theater, gardening, writing, teaching, running a business, painting, constructing houses or sharing the healing arts of medicine and therapy.  Imagination brings about not just intimacy but a big intimacy, a sense of union with the cosmos, a sense of belonging and being at home, of our knowing we have not only a right to be here but a task to do as well while we are here.  French philosopher Gaston Bachelard says that “great dreamers possess intimacy with the world.”  The artist in us shares intimacy, returns one’s intimacy to the world, nourishing the community with one’s inner experience.  Such intimacy shared feels a lot like a sacred experience. 

“Hand In Hand” Image by truthseeker08 from Pixabay

An example of what I mean can be found in a letter the psychologist Carl Rogers wrote to theologian Paul Tillich.  Rogers was very ‘secular’ in his outlook until very near the end of his life, yet in this letter he confesses:  “I feel as though I am somehow in tune with the forces of the universe or that forces are operating through me in regard to this helping relationship.”  And his creativity as a therapist elicited awe from him: “I stand by with awe at the emergence of a self, a person, as I see a birth process in which I have had an important and facilitating part struggling to be himself, yet deathly afraid of being himself.”

I do not believe that Carl Rogers at work is that different from any of us in our work and relationships.  In our creativity, however it is expressed, we can all feel “in tune with the forces of the universe” and the result of our work often urges us to “stand by with awe.”  Creativity brings more awe into the universe.  Indeed, we must feel these things if we are to carry on with integrity.

Adapted from Matthew Fox, Creativity: Where the Divine and the Human Meet, pp. 2-4.
Banner Image: “The Beekeepers.” Image by Michael Strobel from Pixabay

Queries for Contemplation

Have you had experience of being “in tune with the forces of the universe” such as Carl Rogers speaks of when you are at work?  Do you sometimes “stand by with awe” at what happens through you and your work?  Do you feel part of the creative power and creative Spirit of the universe?  What is your take away from these experiences?

Recommended Reading

Because creativity is the key to both our genius and beauty as a species but also to our capacity for evil, we need to teach creativity and to teach ways of steering this God-like power in directions that promote love of life (biophilia) and not love of death (necrophilia). Pushing well beyond the bounds of conventional Christian doctrine, Fox’s focus on creativity attempts nothing less than to shape a new ethic.

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6 thoughts on “Path 3: The Via Creativa”

  1. Avatar

    I’m looking for a little book you mentioned a few weeks ago: “Art and Artist”. Our granddaughter is a senior, applying for art Major in college. Could you send me publisher etc. for purchase? Don

    1. Gail Ransom

      Art and Artist: Creative Urge and Personality Development by Otto Rank can be ordered by many booksellers, including Barnes and Noble and Amazon. We suggest you start with your local bookseller, if you have one. Congratulations to your granddaughter.
      Gail Sofia Ransom
      For the Daily Meditation Team

  2. Avatar

    Love this meditation. As a teacher I seek to be creative and to bring out the creativity of my students. Love the idea of being “in tune with the forces of the universe” and “standing in awe.”

    1. Gail Ransom

      Dear Larry,
      Your students are very fortunate to have a teacher who honors them as creative beings in tune with the forces of the universe. In his teaching of Creation Spirituality and the Four Paths, Matthew Fox says often, “Everyone is an artist.” _ Your students – and you. Your classroom is your canvas.
      Gail Sofia Ransom
      For the Daily Meditation Team.

  3. Avatar

    Mr. Fox,
    have you ever considered the possibility that there might be a correspondence between the spiritual pathways of Creation Spirituality and the fixed signs of the zodiac? In my opinion the Via Positiva corresponds with the sign of Taurus, the Via Negativa with Scorpio, the Via Creativa with Leo, and the Via Transformativa with Aquarius. In also see a correspondence between the spiritual pathways of Creation Spirituality and the Mysteries of the Rosary. The Joyfull Mysteries might correspond to the Via Positiva, the Sorrowfull Mysteries tot the Via Negativa, the Mysteries of the Light to the Via Creativa, and the Glorious Mysteries to the Via Transformativa. So, if I am right, the fact that we are about to enter the Age of Aquarius, does not necessarily mean that Christianity is coming to an end, but that it will be more universal, amongst the other world religions. That is, the cultural expression of Christianity will be transformed info someting more universal, and Christhood will be less Piscian, and more Aquarian in nature. In other words, when the Vernal Point changes from the Siderial Sign of Pisces to the Siderial Sign of Aquarius, the world as a whole might enter the Via Transformativa in Creation Spirituality. The Vernal Point might be considered as an image of the Rising (Cosmic) Christ through the ages.
    In am Frans Pernot from the Netherlands, I wrote my masters thesis in psychology about correspondences between psychological personality theories and the astrological model of personality. In the past 24 years I went through a major conversion process. The complex ego construction of my horoscope was annihilated in what might be called a Dark Night of the Soul during a severe psychological crisis. The zodiac, a language of images generated by the human soul, has been transformed to the prayers and meditations of the Rosary, being an expression of the Word of God. Of crucial importance was a life changing religious experience while I was praying the third Glorious Mystery of the Rosary, the Descent of the Holy Spirit over the apostles, on the sunday of Pentecost 1996 , the Day after my mother deceased.

    1. Gail Ransom

      Dear Frans,
      Once you begin to know the Four Paths, you begin to find them everywhere. They are the paths of evolution, of growing seasons, of recovery from loss and breakdown, of the disintegration and reformation of social structures, etc So your finding them in the Zodiac and the Mysteries of the Rosary are quite understandable. You might want to read “The Physics of Angels” by Matthew Fox and Rupert Sheldrake. In it, they address the Zodiac, its separation from sacred astronomy, and thus with as sense of our lives being connected to the sacredness of the stars and Cosmos.
      Gail Sofia Ransom
      For the Daily Meditation Team

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