Arts for transformation

The arts are the only non-secular means we have to cut through to the spiritual and emotional core of our lives and bring about transformation at a profound level.  The world is desperately in need of new paradigms for change and there is an increasing call for ‘quantum leaps’ in how we solve some of the world’s greatest challenges.

As a young theatre student, I became fascinated by the work of Augusto Boal and his revolutionary work, The Theatre of the Oppressed.  I loved Boal’s concept of the ‘spect-actor’, that we are all active agents for change in our own lives and can bring about transformation in the lives of others.  Boal’s work has been central to my own creative practise and informs the work of Hua Dan and many of my facilitation initiatives.

The arts to me are also profound in their ability to remind us of the importance of ‘surrender’.  To remember that we are not individual humans with minds of our own but are always and already servants to something larger than ourselves.  Martha Graham sums this up beautifully in a quote about the importance of liberating the artist within us so that it can flow through us and bless all around.

“There is a vitality, a life force, an energy, a quickening that is translated through you into action, and because there is only one of you in all of time, this expression is unique. And if you block it, it will never exist through any other medium and it will be lost. The world will not have it. It is not your business to determine how good it is nor how valuable nor how it compares with other expressions. It is your business to keep it yours clearly and directly, to keep the channel open. You do not even have to believe in yourself or your work. You have to keep yourself open and aware to the urges that motivate you. Keep the channel open. … No artist is pleased. [There is] no satisfaction whatever at any time. There is only a queer divine dissatisfaction, a blessed unrest that keeps us marching and makes us more alive than the others” – Martha Grahm

For more information on my own work in arts for transformation, please see the following link:

https://love-not-fear.org/the-hua-dan-story/

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