This is an excerpt from the Appendix of The Artist’s Way by Julia Cameron. I have always found it wise and spot on. I have also come to see this blog community as a Sacred Circle in the way that Julia Cameron describes it, so I wanted to share this with you. Thank you for being a part of the Circle.
The Sacred Circle (continued—see previous post, The Sacred Circle, Part 1)
The Sacred Circle is built on respect and trust. The image is of the garden. Each plant has its name and its place. There is no one flower that cancels the need for another. Each bloom has its unique and irreplaceable beauty.
Let our gardening hands be gentle ones. Let us not root up one another’s ideas before they have time to bloom. Let us bear with the process of growth, dormancy, cyclicality, fruition, and reseeding. Let us never be hasty to judge, reckless in our urgency to force unnatural growth. Let there be, always, a place for the artist toddler to try, to falter, to fail, to try again. Let us remember that in nature’s world every loss has meaning. The same is true for us. Turned to good use, a creative failure may be the compost that nourishes next season’s creative success. Remember, we are in this for the long haul, the ripening and harvest, not the quick fix….
When people ask me what I think is the single most important factor in an artist’s sustained productivity, I know I am supposed to say something like, “solitude,” or “an independent income,” or “childcare.” All of these things are good and many people have said so, but what I think is better and more important than any of these things is what I call “a believing mirror.”
Put simply, a believing mirror is a friend to your creativity — someone who believes in you and your creativity. As artists, we can consciously build what I call creative clusters—a Sacred Circle of believing mirrors to potentiate each other’s growth, to mirror a “yes” to each other’s creativity.
In my experience we can benefit greatly from the support of others who share our dreams of living a fuller life….
Artists like other artists. We are not supposed to know this. We are encouraged to believe “there is only so much room at the top.” Hooey. Water seeks its own level and water rises collectively.
Artists often help each other. We always have, although mythology tells us otherwise. The truth is that, when we do, very powerful things happen. I will give a case in point. Film director Martin Scorsese developed, shaped, and fine-tuned the script for Schindler’s List — then gave the project to his friend Steven Spielberg, feeling the material should be his. This unballyhooed act of creative generosity finally gave Spielberg his shot at an Oscar as a “real director” — even though Scorsese knew it might cost him his own shot, at least this year. And yet, to read about it in the press, these men are pitted against each other, artist versus artist… Hooey again.
Success occurs in clusters.
As artists, we must find those who believe in us, and in whom we believe, and band together for support, encouragement and protection….
We all start out the same way — rich in dreams and nothing more. If we are lucky, we find friends to believe in our dreams with us. When we do, that creative cluster becomes a magnet to attract our good.
To be continued…
Love to you all,