The Great Release


The Great Release by Lidia Kenig

I often liken painting with being immersed in God, because when I am in the studio, it appears that the Universe orchestrates a joyful dance with the materials and processes so that the right procedure, the perfect color delivered in the perfect way, lands on a canvas without my physical involvement.

It may sound otherworldly, but I often feel like a puppet on a string, except that the strings are made up of pure light, and as painting progresses, light pours out in all directions, but I become the one generating it.  If I were to describe the overall emotion, I would call it love.

The studio is my happy place where I love openly and where I feel unconditionally loved. It is where, with unabashed trust I allow colors, textures and images to appear on the canvas. It is where I practice trusting life.

Thus, I was not surprised at the images in the completed canvas when I began the post painting meditation. I saw a bright sunrise above a fiery earth, facing a deep blue ocean below. Perhaps there are buildings in the distance, but there are no people about in this slice of Summertime.

My slice of summer was bittersweet. Long held traditions ended and relationships shifted or expired, yet I had many rewarding experiences reconnecting with old clients, successfully designing residential spaces, serendipitously finding places to exhibit artworks, attracting painting commissions and receiving heartfelt testimonials about my art and my designed interiors.  Like when I create, I was deeply present to what landed on my life canvas and in meditation, I reflected on the emotions that emerged and the people and situations that provoked the feelings.

I felt like I was being carried into a new life cycle, and consciously allowed all of it to coexist by trusting in its inherent rightness. As such, on the second meditation, I considered that the “fiery earth” I originally saw in the painting, could also be looked at as the very precious antique cloth that is my life.

I can’t prove that we have had many lives and accumulated what in Buddhism is called karma, which ripens in each lifetime. I noticed that not all the experiences and people that show up in our present life are a product of our thoughts and deeds in this life. Some seem to come from some other place and time. We can see strong patterns operating in people’s lives that can either help them grow in a supportive way or challenges them to become stronger. In all cases, when we become aware of these threads, often through meditation, that seem to run our lives and take inspired action, we gain much wisdom and can lead very fulfilling lives.

In my first meditation with the painting, I saw a starry sky receding to make way for the light of the sun. The land below is still smoldering from ravaging fires above the great ocean. The wind helps the ashes and debris to fly off into the ether. The bits blowing away depict the things, people, relationships, thoughts, emotions and life patterns being released from the mind, which is represented by the landscape. The rising tide washes away the last bits of live fire as a new day begins. The sun shines upon the parched land, spreading bits of light to help the ashes transform eventually into fertile soil.

On another day meditating with the painting, I focused on the textured “land” and began to see it as precious antique tapestry. All my life experiences, my mishaps and my triumphs in this or any other lifetimes have given my soul much material from which to create the rich cloth that is my life now and that could not have existed without such journey. Yet, in time, some threads on the cloth wear out and must be discarded because they no longer provide a viable structure to the tapestry. A good restorer can seamlessly weave new threads, place the worn-out ones into the recycle bin and lovingly return the cloth to its original glory.

I looked at the difficult changes that occurred this summer as worn out threads that needed to leave my life. In emptying the recycle bin I saw an opportunity to release old emotional baggage and lovingly weave new patterns into my life tapestry.  I appreciate what I learned from the outworn threads and admire the beauty and power of the parts that remain. Its overall stability accepts the new strength being provided by new material and trusts that, restored to its brilliance, it will gracefully carry me into a new life cycle!

I recently shared this painting, but not my interpretations with several clients as a meditation. In most cases, the revelations were quite powerful; all had to do with letting go of old patterns of thought!

The Great Release invites you to look within and let go of what no longer makes your life tapestry strong. Isn’t time to weave the shiny new threads to carry you, as if by magic into your best life?

Call it self-love and take inspired action; find the painting’s purchase options here in, The Great Release.

 

Can You Allow Life to Surprise You?


Allowing Life to Surprise by Lidia Kenig-Scher (c) 2018
Allowing Life to Surprise by Lidia Kenig-Scher (c) 2018

 

I must admit, I was getting impatient. I have been feeling listless for several weeks. I would meditate and fall asleep. I would go to bed early and sleep late. I would go into the studio and stare at a blank canvas with an equally blank gaze. I would re-arrange the brushes and inspect them carefully only to put them back unused in their bin. Even though I checked all my acrylic inks and the soft body paints for drips and dried up paint, when I looked around I noticed that the studio was untidy yet my living quarters were nice and clean.

Lacking motivation to read, I slept. I was not depressed; my empty mind knew that this is how I needed to be at the moment. From a sort of hibernation I trusted that somehow I would eventually find my way into a more physically and mentally productive stage. The full yin mode prepared me for a shift that fittingly so, began on the first day of Spring.

The sun was shining brightly as I cautiously entered the studio and felt the change in consciousness. I looked down and saw light in my heart and began to quickly and randomly apply soft body cadmium yellow paint on to a square canvas with a slanted palette knife. Filled with joy, I scratched the thick paint to make deep marks on the surface. I did this literally and figuratively, like I finally broke through a stalemate.

Even though I soon ran out of steam and needed to rest again, I was unafraid to yield. Something was about to be born and all I had to do was to continue to show up and be willing to be genuinely surprised. Allowing was the key.

A beautiful pearl is born when the oyster quietly secretes pearlescent nacre as she tries to ward off a foreign substance. Allowing gives time for the foreign (the unknown) to become, make itself known and reveal the beauty of the process.

During the next session, violet and lavender drips moved about the canvas aided by air from a compressor. When the undulating deep purple shape appeared on the bottom, I realized that I had created a window into the new cycle of my life.

Contemplating the final painting and looking for the lessons it was teaching me, I saw that after a whirlwind period of painting, exhibiting, presentations, teaching and writing, I needed permission to really let go. Thus, I allowed myself to come apart and be dissembled so that the pieces could be reassembled into a new spiritually coherent form.

The drips were an important part of my learning. They represent my unwillingness to detach from a painful life situation. The images suggest that it is time for a thorough unraveling. Spirit guided me to see that the reedy formations crafted into branches were now bursting with luscious red berries. Basking in the light of a glorious sunrise the young trees are so rapidly growing that they blend into the dreamy sky.

This painting reminds me and anyone who beholds it that life does not have to be grasped, or sought as much as received. When we are willing to trust our heart’s guidance and hold the necessary time and space for the new to unfold, we allow life to surprise us with the sweet berries of gratefulness, delight and joy.

As I internalized the art’s gifts, I received even more.  I was offered new and exciting art commissions, renewed a very old friendship and my family is hosting a party for my birthday. Last week, a friend hosted a surprise celebration for me.  Former students publicly expressed their appreciation for how my teaching affected them, a faraway friend surprised me with plans to visit me in the fall and another one booked a visit for next Summer.

I could actually post a very long list of happy surprises, but I hope that you may want to purchase the painting and learn to allow Life to Surprise You! Click on the link to see the painting up close and buy it now.