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Fall From Grace © 2000 Aliyah Marr

These days it seems everyone is experiencing changes. Changes often evoke fear; if you find yourself in a “dark night of the soul,” you may find it very difficult to make good decisions.

The brain reacts to fearful circumstances by shutting off the blood supply to the higher functioning parts of the brain; automatically shutting off creativity, and openness at the same time. The brain does this so that the entire person may survive adverse conditions without getting frozen in abstract thought. Anxiety generates the same reaction in the brain, preventing creative thought.

So what can one do when the brain is caught in the wheel of fear or anxiety? One of the best ways out is through expression in art. I have discovered — as have most artists — that it is best to know what is bothering you, and I use art to bring it out in the open. Once it is out in the open, it has a chance to no longer be in you.

I am a visual artist (www.radi8.org), but, for some reason, I cannot use my art to express powerful emotions. Instead, I use poetry for this purpose. It’s a good thing that I have access to more than one medium — in fact, I think that creative people can use more than one medium, and I encourge this in my books and as a creative coach.

The expression of an artist’s feelings has resulted in some of the most poignant works of art and music ever produced…

As an artist you can choose any kind of creative activities to explore an issue, and thereby lighten your mood. In the process, the artist finds unsuspected resources that have nothing to do with what we normally associate with ourselves, with our conscious thoughts and identity. — © Aliyah Marr, Parallel Mind, The Art of Creativity

Art as personal therapy — like the blues in music — has the power to transform the artist: it can change his mood, his outlook on life, even his future. But beyond healing the emotional landscape of the artist and viewer, it has a direct effect on the evolution of the entire person.

Surely if you can make a life of art, why not make an art of life?

Copyright 2010 Aliyah Marr