For the Love of Clouds

I've looked at clouds from both sides now,
from up and down, and still somehow,
it's clouds illusions I recall.
I really don't know all.

--Joni Mitchell, 1969

     In sacred art, which is not limited to iconology, there is an invitation into a deeper healing by entering light, space, and form. Finding the sacred is a process, and collaboration between imagery and viewer. By allowing art to open the psyche, there is a transcendent meeting point between creativity and universal oneness. Offered as a meditation, sacred images are a transmission of divine love. By incorporating these visual meditations into a daily practice, the viewer is better able to settle the mind to begin an inner journey into self-awareness. It is only in the contemplative practice that one is able to find a means to transmute suffering into joy, and thus scared art has the capacity for profound healing.
     Healing art is powerful because the imagery carries with it a higher frequency, not only in the colors, light, and form (form bound by sacred geometry, which mirrors the architectural universal principles), but also in the creative process itself. If open, the viewer is able receive the intended benefits of the creative process. It is the intention(s) of the artist that can transmit the seeds of transformation. For hundreds of years, cloud imagery has been a powerful captivation for writers, painters, and more relatively recent, photographers. There is a rich photographic tradition from Edward Weston who photographed clouds in Mexico in the 1920’s, to Alfred Stieglitz in his 1930’s series called, “Equivalents”, and to Ansel Adams in the great western landscape of the 1950’s. These masterworks captured a single glorious moment of time. Contemporary photographers all across the world continue to work as subject the sublime nature of clouds
     Clouds provide a transcendent purity because they are both secular and sacred, not bound by human constructs. They are timeless, beyond mind, beyond religion. Clouds are the reminder that change is constant. When one takes the time to be in relationship with clouds, they teach us how to flow by not being attached to form. All shapes have a possible meaning and the possible meanings are infinite. By allowing ourselves to let go and relax, we return to our true nature, a state of bliss being. This is our Christ nature, our Bodhisattva, our Sat Nam. It is our immutable, timeless selves, our universal nature. Ironically, it is the immutable part of self that is able to transcend circumstance. When we get out of our cognitive constructs, losing ourselves so-to-speak, it makes room for the divine instant to rush in and fill our deeper psyche. It is in that moment that we are filled, able to receive unlimited joy. It is in that divine instant that we too become as timeless and as vast as the sky and as varied moment to moment as the clouds. We are whole.
     Clouds help us return to that joy of knowing our inner self, and it is that joy that has the power to heal. Who of us does not recall the instant pleasure of being in one of nature’s vast and varied rooms, starring out into the infinite sky, thankfully losing ourselves into mindlessness. Some of us may have been told to stop daydreaming, to “get your head out of the clouds.” For a while, we learn to believe that we are better off to be outside of our illumined daydream. We essentially become separated into the struggles of productivity. Then some of us forget how assessable is our healing. We forget who we really are. Who we really are is met time and time again in the sacredness of the divine instant, in that space of timelessness. For the love of clouds, it is the cloud that knows that best.

Patricia L. Meek, LPC

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