The Healing Power of the Creative DivineMelissa C Palmer, LCSW, ACHP-SW, APHSW-C, JD May 30, 2023
How many of us “used” to draw? Or journal? Or dance? As we leave childhood, we also often leave the magnificent world of creativity behind. Becoming an adult often does not afford us the time and luxury of opening the portal of mystery and gliding through to the world of unconditional, succulent beauty. But I reflect that as we become more distant from that magical world of creation, we lose a valuable tool for tapping into deep pools of feeling and expression.
Using visual art, music, dance and writing allow humans to transcend the mundane and reach into our innermost true selves. We all have the capacity to create, and in turn, find freedom in letting go and feeling deeply. Ironically, for many people, the creativity that allows for deep healing and tapping into the spiritual is tamped down at an early age. Art and creative expression should be viewed not as a “talent” or “skill” but an expression of the soul.
It is no accident that the most talented artists also have trauma and a deep emotional well from which they channel. Part of the healing process for many stems from suspending reality and transmuting pain, trauma, shame, sadness, anger, joy, and gratitude into words, sounds, and images. In turn, those experiencing others’ art can identify on a visceral level with the universal experience of humanity. Art is a powerful form of communication and connection.
Art therapy is a clinical, guided practice that provides a psychological sherpa who utilizes the vehicle of artistic expression to facilitate reconnection of mind, body and spirit. This is one of many options for those who wish to find healing through creation. Others harness their emotions through artistic avenues in solitude or with a group of others. Imaginative processes allow us to suspend reality and enter into a type of mindfulness practice that opens our hearts to growth and healing.
I would like to share with you a few articles about creativity and healing and the website to an author named SArK who uses creativity in her work to elicit healing in the reader:
Rubinstein, D. and M. Lahal. 2022. Fantastic Reality: The Role of Imagination, Playfulness, and Creativity in Healing Trauma. Traumatology. Advance online publication. http://dx.doi.org/10.1037/trm0000376.