The Soulistry Story
(Reprinted from “Soulistry-Artistry of the Soul: Creative Ways to Nurture Your Spirituality” to be published by John Hunt Publishing: Circle Books early in 2011. See “Books” section on this site.)
The Soulistry story began early in 2004 when mercury poisoning resulted in the atrophying of my muscles (legs, arms, voice) along with sleepless nights and long days of exhaustion filled with pain. I wasn’t able to read, think clearly, find solace in books, enjoy visits or even conversations with family and friends.
Unable to sleep one night, I found myself looking at the top shelf of my office closet where I’d stored a variety of things. Before I knew it, I had taken a plain, wooden framed mirror and started adding a variety of embellishments. I continued to play and create, and the pain seemed to lessen. Eventually, I was able to sleep. In the morning, I saw the mirror and was struck by its beauty and simplicity.
I sensed that some new thing was happening. I could feel my spirit soaring. A part of my brain was working – my right brain!
I began to wonder: “If I focus on activating my right brain, could my left brain possibly begin to work again?” In a moment of prayer – a conversation with the Creator, I clearly heard affirmation, encouragement and hope: “Develop your right brain. Healing will come”.
How was I supposed to do that? While creativity had been expressed in my life in various ways, I’d never thought of myself as ‘artistic’. But, as I began to experiment with cardstock, paper, pen and ink, watercolors and the mirrors, I came to realize that I was artistic. The more I played and created, the more my right brain activity increased and the more aware I was that my left brain was becoming more active … letters finally formed into words – I could read again! I began to think with clarity and enter into conversations and visits with family and friends.
The combination of two words (soul + artistry) into one new word “Soulistry” became the umbrella for the Meditation Mirrors, Soulistry Art Cards and bookmarks that began to find their way into art shows and Christmas fairs. And, they were selling!
- View Soulistry Meditation Mirrors here. Soulistry Meditation Mirrors are uniquely designed and created with an original meditation (“Seeing … Me”) on the back of each mirror. A 10” x 10” wooden frame surrounds each mirror and is embellished with paper, feathers, pearls, buttons, glass, beads, figures etc.
My soul was being nourished through a variety of artistic expressions. I began to think of myself as an artist and coined a phrase – Creative Spirituality Artist – to describe myself.
I began to realize that the next step in my healing was to ‘step out in faith’ … combine my experiences as an educator, Creative Spirituality Artist, writer and spiritual director/soul friend. And that’s how the Soulistry Workshops and Retreats were born. Out of a devastating medical crisis where the future looked bleak, new life emerged in ways I had never even imagined.
Word began to spread and invitations to speak at conferences and facilitate Soulistry workshops and retreats in various places throughout North America and Europe have come my way. I love to travel and encourage people in their self-growth/spiritual development, so each invitation is greeted with much joy and anticipation as possibilities are considered. This journey is very humbling – and exciting!
Along the way, the idea for a new book (ABC Publishing and Forward Movement published my spiritual autobiography – “Disturbed by God: A Journey of Spiritual Discovery” now out of print, but available as an e-book — slowly began to surface. I began to collect quotations, research authorship, write mini author biographies, contact authors/their representatives requesting permission to use their quotation and created accompanying Soul-Questions. It was a project that kept my brain active and helped to move the heavy metal toxicity out of my body. And, on top of all of that, it was fun!
One day, I received an unexpected email from the publisher of Circle Books, a new book publishing imprint, who asked if my work “could fit into this new program”. I wondered, “Could the publication of the book be the next step for Soulistry”?
After several emails back and forth, it seemed that publication of the book really was the next step. And, Soulistry will become an e-book in November 2010 and in a book format early in 2011.
Yes – Soulistry’s story is a story of grace … pure and simple.