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What Does It Mean to Be Creative? by Sylvia D’Andrea

The Master has Whispered in my Ear

What does it mean to be creative? Painters, sculptors and writers all use their creativity. Creativity also is employed by a mother who dreams up activities to keep her children entertained. It's utilized by the corporate manager who needs to keep a staff of sales people motivated. We all are being creative when we produce a product, an object or a hoped-for outcome.

Then why is it that sometimes, when we're trying to be creative, our inspiration seems to fall short and at other times it comes bursting forth, seemingly out of nowhere?

Where does creativity come from? Perhaps from our ability to imagine—to ‘image’ something we want to produce or an outcome we want to achieve. Albert Einstein has been quoted as saying, "logic will get you from A to Z; imagination will get you everywhere." Our success with creativity lies in our ability to imagine, or ‘image’. Children are great at this as they have limitless potential to imagine. As adults, we tend only to use our brain to create, which usually is a thought process that involves a particular blend of logic, history and opinions. Calling upon our imagination goes beyond that usual thought process.

Our success with creativity lies in our ability to imagine, or ‘image’.

Going with the Flow

There is nothing wrong with using our education, history and logic to aid in the creative process. And, yet, many writers, artists and famous composers assert that their inspiration seems to have suddenly and simply appeared; the words flowed effortlessly from the writer's hand or the composer has a melody come through in its entirety without struggle and without the brain calling on past experience or logical thought process. So, what is actually going on? Can we purposely ignite our imagination and unleash our best creativity?

Michelangelo, remarking about his sculpture "David," said: "I saw the angel in the marble and carved it until I set him free." Some say our ability to imagine lies within our higher self — that part of us that is beyond the realm of mere brain processes and is energy. That is what made Michelangelo see the angel inside the piece of rock.

Three centuries later, when another artist, Auguste Rodin, visited Florence and observed Michelangelo's sculptures, he wrote in a letter: "The master has whispered in my ear; and now I know how to sculpt."

Food for Thought

At a family dinner, I watched my fiveyear- old niece eating (mostly mushing around) the mashed potatoes on her plate. Suddenly, she looked up from her plate, her eyes bright with an idea. She got up from the table, went into the kitchen and returned with some strawberries that had caught her attention earlier. I watched as she mashed the strawberries and stirred them into her pile of potatoes. Her next forkful brought a smile to her face and a slight frown to mine. She noticed this and gleefully offered me a taste of her strawberry mashed potatoes. "Try it!" she said joyfully. "It's yummy!" I did. She was right. It was yummy.

Children have less brain ‘baggage’ than adults. They don't possess years of book-learned knowledge that sometimes blocks us from fully accessing our higher selves where our imagination is unhindered by the logic of our thinking mind. That's why children’s drawings contain blue trees and their mashed potatoes have strawberries. My niece reminded me of a part of me that I need to use more often. The master had whispered in my ear.

Sylvia D'Andrea has been studying and exploring healing modalities for the past ten years. She is an accredited EMF Balancing Technique practitioner, a certified Tama-Do practitioner and Tao Yin Fa-Chi Kung instructor. She has a practice in Ramsey, New Jersey and offers workshops in New York and New Jersey. She can be reached at

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