MAKING A DECISION
DECIDING YOUR FATE
CHARTING YOUR JOURNEY
MAKING A DECISION
DECIDING YOUR FATE
EMBARKING ON YOUR JOURNEY
HEATHER TAYLOR-ZIMMERMAN, PhD
Take courses alone.
Bundled course rates
Join a Friend
Bring a partner.
With a Group
Gather a tribe.
QUALITIES REQUIRED FOR THE JOURNEY —
Courage Commitment Compassion
When considering this path, these are the qualities required for the road. (Not "knowing how to draw.)
When considering this path, drop into your heart. Invoke dreams. Go for a walk in nature. Listen to the silence as you lie in bed in the morning . . . whatever is your way to find an answer. Listen for the butterfly whisper of the soul and then follow it. Feel in. Do you want to do this alone? Do you feel called to do it with your partner or a group? This is a container for growth that creates intimacy on multiple levels.
FIND YOUR WAY.
Some Questions & Answers
Q: Do you need to know how to draw/paint/what you are doing?
A: No. Not at all. This is about self and soul expression. It is about play and exploration. The basics of how to apply paint and draw are not necessary--AND I will have some videos and live sessions in case you want help or have questions. YOU'VE GOT THIS.
Q: Is this process hard?
A: This is deep healing work that teaches you to overcome your own fears and darkness. It takes you into the heart but also the heart of the wound, and this can be painful. Whether it is childhood trauma or the death of a loved one, the places you go are not vacations. They are like soul retreats, and they require some soul trust. In my experience, the soul handles hardship with a profound grace that transcends our capacity to imagine and understand--but it doesn't mean it is easy. It is more like the soul is a midwife, helping you to give birth to your potential. In childbirth what matters is the life of the child and the mother. The soul cares that you live a life worth living. Similarly, in this process it is about giving birth to your creation and the life that is engendered by the process. The soul is life. The end result is so much better (REAL) than what you had before, that it is worthwhile--even if it is hard sometimes.
Q: What are the potential risks?
This process will not kill you, in fact it will give you new life. It is a chance to rewrite your story or myth, to take the reins of your own life adventure--or, more aptly, give them to your soul. This may feel risky, because your ego is used to being in control, but it is actually a surer form of control. The real risk is to be unconscious. For, as Jung said, until you make the unconscious conscious, it will decide your fate. Though Jung referred to the "risk of this undertaking" as building "a bridge out into space," this is more of the challenge. In this process we are learning to bridge to inner depths beyond our normal awareness to contact soul and spirit. The coursework is designed to help you in this meaningful and momentous undertaking. Please reach out if you have questions or concerns.
Courage to Commit to Love —
*Don't be frightened. This is the section that is the small print that avoids legality and protects you. It poses the hard questions.
Q:Is this a form of analysis?
Jung taught this process to his "advanced patients" in analysis. Yet he described it as a way to liberate yourself from a "morbid dependence" on the analyst. That said, you may need an analyst. While this path has elements of analysis and art therapy, it does not come with the training to become a licensed therapist or analyst. Though I have walked this path in a doctoral degree in depth psychology, and have unique qualifications and experience from decades of exploration, I am NOT A LICENSED THERAPIST. I can help guide you, but please make sure that YOU GET THE SUPPORT THAT YOU NEED--whether that means seeing a psychotherapist or a psychiatrist. This path combines elements of the artist, mystic, wiseman, and shaman, offering an archetypal way for you to heal yourself--something of profound value, given that most people cannot afford analysis. That said, analysis can provide another layer of containment if you need it. The Delphic maxim gnothi seauton or "know thyself" is at the heart of this process whichh requires self-honesty and self-reflection. We all have wounds. Don't be afraid to reach out to get the help you need to heal.
Q:Does this process promote psychosis?
Jung wondered if he was "doing a psychosis" in this process and the neurologist Oliver Sachs described visions as hallucinations. So what is the relationship between visions and psychosis? An example might help. I once had an oracular experience (hearing an inner voice) that informed me that someone I knew would experience a mental breakdown soon if they did not address childhood wounding. This soul communication attributed the person's impending psychotic break to their unwillingness to work with their soul to heal. A few years later I learned that the person was diagnosed with schizophrenia. While I cannot prove causation, this personal story exemplifies the difference between the creative therapy of this process which heals you and the destructive avoidance of therapy causing disease. Notably, the person and I were both hearing inner voices, but theirs were telling them destructive and harmful messages, while mine was trying to tell and teach me about psychosis. Based on this and other experiences, I believe that this visionary process can actually help prevent psychosis, offering a way for people to heal past wounds and work with their soul. Part of this is rooted in the realization that not all visions are bad. I have had visions show me that I would be attacked and how in order to prepare me, saving my life and the lives of others. This cannot be explained, but it is the way that I have experienced soul communication. I have witnessed different people experience the same vision without talking to each other and visions that predicted collective outcomes like the planes hitting the 2 towers. I see this visionary communication of the soul as one of the path's greatest gifts, reflected by Jung who said that he and his patients experienced an increase in visions.
"The greatest blessing granted to mankind come by way of madness, which is the divine gift." Socrates
Q:What are the role of visions and dreams?
A: Dreams and visions are the way that spirit communicates with humanity, according to Jung and the mystics of the ages, yet this might be call that madness in the modern day. Dreams and visions guide us, but their guidance is not harmful but loving (unlike a psychosis). In my experience, the most painful memories can be revisited in soul-led dreams and visions in a way that is profoundly graceful--filled with grace. This path is about remembering the symbolic language of dreams and visions.
Q:What do I need to consider in making my decision to walk this path?
A: First and foremost, the primary consideration is with your soul and your Self. This includes checking in with and honoring your little self. Be compassionate with the part of you who is afraid to see into the dark and what might emerge from the depths. Honor the part of you who feels childhood wounding. This is actually for them. You need buy in from the different parts of yourself (your wounded child and pragmatic adult) to follow your soul. Your ego will not like to cede control. Have compassion with them too. Feel into your heart. Let your soul in to speak to you and guide you. Make a commitment to and through the soul. Let your soul lead. You can pursue this question in journaling, asking a question and listening for an answer. It could come in a dream 2 days later or a still voice. Attune yourself to soul as you consider this path. Can you commit to a dedicated period of attending to your soul? That is really what this path takes. Considerations of space or supplies are secondary to your own inner commitment.
Q: What are the benefits and cost of this process?
A: As the saying goes, you get out what you put in. Jung said that this was meant to be a costly and precious book, and it is art that requires sacrifice—yet, sacrifice makes sacred (sacrare). The greatest cost will be the commitment of time and psychic (spiritual and emotional) energy it requires to follow the soul . . . yet, this is what gives the treasure beyond price. Feel into what the cost will be for you. This is meant to be a soul offering, and scholarships are available, but the reason you are paying is also to value this. This is invaluable work--not what I am offering--but what your soul is offering. I am merely helping to provide a container for the work.
Q: Is this religious?
A: This is a teaching and a following of the soul, and Jung’s soul said that this was a new proclamation of a new religion. The religious instinct is essential, and to hold things as sacred is essential. Yet religions have caused a lot of harm. Part of what the Soul of Creativity is doing is helping you to connect directly to your soul and spirit (God, the Divine, Source, Nature . . . ). This is about your relationship to the soul and spirit. It is not a religion, but its revelation can be profoundly spiritual and serve in a similarly way as a path.
Q: Is it magic?
A: Magi is the root of imagination and magic. Jung referred to this process as the “magical value” of art and the artist (Leonardo da Vinci in particular) as a “magician.” It is magic in the sense of the alignment of heaven and earth and the miracles that occur when we embody spirit in matter. It reminds me of teaching a group of kindergartners using aboriginal illustrations that had a glow around the figures, and all of the children spontaneously declared: "Is this magic?" The short answer is yes, but not in a typical way. It is not false but real. If magic scares you think of it as miraculous. The soul moves in the world in ways we cannot, that is what it is.
Q: Is this fantasy?
A: There is a modern disregard for fantasy as unreal, and yet it can be more real than real for those who have had visionary experiences and dreams. In the past, people were guided individually and collectively by visions and dreams as direct revelation, and this is the heart of the fantasy here. The “Creative Imagination,” is essential because “all the works of man have their origin in creative fantasy.” Creative imagery is the soul's iconography or visual communication, our trick is how to understand it.
"It is not to be thought; it is to be viewed. It is a painting." Jung of his soul." C. G. Jung