On February 3, I offered ‘Mandala: the Yoga of Creativity’. As always, gathering around the circle to summon the creative muse is a rich experience. The class was held at Sacred Energy Arts Studio in Santa Monica. I invited local writer, John Cotugno, to share his firey poem ‘Soul Sailing’ as a special introduction to the class.

We begin with some warm-up drawings that coordinate both hemispheres of the brain and hand-eye movements. We did a brief guided meditation to activate the ‘divine imagination’ (a term used by William Blake for the creative impulse). After the meditation, we were centered and ready to create our mandalas using watercolor paints, oil pastels, NeoColor sticks, and color pencils.

As we listened to music and painted for about an hour, but it felt much shorter! We had each created something special and unique to share. Unexpected revelations, communion, insights, open to the flow without judgment or expectation. Joy and satisfaction.

Karen wrote of her experience:

“It felt very restorative as well as creative!”

Bea, who has explored the mandala with me before, said:

“Your classes have been wonderful. I have truly learned so much from your knowledge and wisdom.”

Another participant, Suzanna, observed:

“I hardly slept last night – so much was moving…something has certainly been unleashed, brought into focus.”
and Susan summed it up in two simple words,
“It’s fun!”
Here is the poem by John Cotugno:

soul sailing

twisting in the gut, involuntary exhale
an energetic fire i pass through
an alchemical experience of life changing
I am rage, I am hate, I am death, I am fire

like joan of arc on the pyre
the town around you stone throwing
the beast they conspire
Least knowing what it is

reactions from fear
love is too close
merging into one
loosing the self

I am that crazy beast full of giving life
dynamic as the sun is explosive
dangerous as the sun is burning
moving with the tides of life
the energy that binds us all universally
soul and universe in one

wide open to the wild ride before your eyes
uncontrollable it flies, no manual given,
learning as you go, love as much as you can
and though you pray for the best, you know how it ends
in the decomposition of our material worth we disperse
learning and bending with time and space
soul sailing on and on verse by verse.

Thanks to everyone who participated and special thanks to Susan and Matthew at Sacred Energy Arts for providing the beautiful space!

“mandalas are eternal mind’s eternal recreation”

~C.G. Jung



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