Most adults I speak to do not see themselves as creative at all. So before we can “change the system”: we have to first realize how creativity is key to a growth mindset which is vital to true learning. This can only be done if we are actively seeking knowledge of self.
Our imagination is what we use to create our realities. So therefore creativity is spirituality. A creative person is connected to their soul and has unique ways of showcasing their spiritual connection through art and imagination. Spiritual intelligence is an all-encompassing form of intelligence.
Creativity and the use of our imaginations is the first step to everything we do, even our spirituality. When we are praying or meditating, we are using our ‘imagination” to envision our higher selves, our spirit guides, or our prayers coming into fruition. The mind’s eye sets the stage for what we draw to us in the astral realm. Our thoughts and visions of the world come from our perception which is molded and created by our choices and experiences.
Spirituality is an ongoing journey and learning experience from the inside out. Where as creativity is the ability to take that learning and apply it to our reality.
In the summer of 2016 I went on a hiking trip with my dear friend. We hiked the Appalachian Trail starting at PenMar Park in Western Maryland. We hiked south towards Ravens Rock shelter.
Pen Mar Park was owned and operated by the Western Maryland Railroad and had its beginning as far back as 1878. Within a few short years it soon became the “Coney Island” of the Blue Ridge Mountains for the children and remained one of the most famous resorts of its kind for half a century.
At one time the park area supported seven hotels, plus a number of boarding houses. Many families spent their entire vacation on the mountain top. The Western Maryland Railroad found that the excursion business it engendered was most profitable, and in 1898 — twenty years after the park was established — it carried 1,200,900 passengers and over half of these were excursionists to Pen Mar Park. Today, even the Western Maryland passenger service is but a memory.
When we started on our way, a black snake crossed our path. We had already decided before we left that we would both go through this experience with purpose and intention…. in a magickal way. So we both took the snake as a sign.
We hiked for almost 2 miles, through a forest on a hill of rocks. It was a strenuous climb at times…definitely a leg workout. But we finally made it to High Rock Park. I felt like the Indigenous people who lived there were rock jumpers and this was one of their sacred spaces.
North from High Rock Near Pen Mar Park Highfield-Cascade, MD
There is an amazing and ominous feeling at the top of the rock. It feels like you’re standing at the top of a pyramid, looking out over your civilization. It is beautiful and deadly. Last year when we got to High Rock, a teenage boy flipped off the rock above me, flying over me and off the cliff.
Seeing, feeling, experiencing someone fall from a cliff at least 100 feet down is not something you believe you will experience. The people on the cliffs get very brave and risky… it is very slippery because of all the traffic and the graffiti.
Luckily, the next day we looked up incident reports for the area and we found out he was alive. Talk about a significant magickal journey.
So last weekend I and another dear friend of mine went for a hike and started at PenMar. When we started this hiking journey, we just wanted be out in nature… but the universe took me on another magickal journey.
We hiked to High Rock, but it was getting late and we weren’t sure if we’d make it to Ravens Run Shelter before dark so we decided to stay off the Appalachian Trail at High Rock. We set our hammocks up in the pine trees just off to the side of the main cliff. Because we were so close to the cliffs we didn’t really get up to walk around much, and stayed in our hammocks all night.
View facing edge of cliff
View behind me
We laid down for bed around 11pm and there were still groups of kids on the top of the rocks. At 12 o’clock they left and another group drove in right after. The groups were loud and rowdy, some of them even getting into arguments with each other. At one point there was a bear sighted and the group of kids ran to their car and set off their car alarm.
I was ready for bed, I was sleeping in a hammock, I did not want to be involved with anything that was happening 100 ft from me…. but I was scared out of my mind. Every time I heard a persons voice, or someone yell or laugh loudly it startled me.
I had such high anxiety… I knew this was a fight or flight response, triggered by the events that had happened 3 years earlier. I had not processed that energy to release it in a healthy way. I pushed that experience aside, utilizing coping strategies that allowed me to rationalize my emotions so that I did not have to feel them.
This time I sat in the feeling. I sat in the emotion, the physical sensations. I sat with my imagination. I sat with myself.
I sat and listened…. to the world… and to myself. I listened to how I process, and perceive. I listened to where my thoughts wanted to take me. I sat in my shadows.
My imagination and I, battling it out…. all the ways something bad could’ve happened continued to play through my chest, over and over….
In and out, I had to breath and know I was alright, and face my feelings and face the shadows, to see they were of my own making.
And I had to wait until the sun came back up to truly see that my fears were irrational.
Everything was alright, everything turned out just fine.
The second quarter has come to an end, that means we are halfway through the school year already. It’s hard to believe!
Second quarter was full of fun! Students created so many amazing things, using their skills and imagination.
8th grade gt students completed their mantle of the expert art presentations which were amazing.
They also created many amazing sketchbook assignments, practicing their drawing skills. Student chose at least 3 personal objects to draw from observation, realistically using shading to create form. Then they were able to create a background for their work.
8th, 7th, and 6th grade art students worked on Letting their Imaginations fly, for the PTA Reflections contest. Looking forward to finding out if any of them won awards for their work!
After flying around for a while, students landed to focus on shading and observational drawing in order to assist them in their upcoming still life drawing.
The art department hung a student show at the Towson Deli, like we do every December. It is so wonderful being out in our community, sharing the amazing things our students are doing.
Students also created Anti-Drug Posters for the State’s Attorney’s office contest. The task was to create posters to share the affects of drug and alcohol abuse. We will found in February if anyone received an award!
Outside of the Art studio, a lot happened at RMS! Teachers and students got together for an amazing canned food drive before thanksgiving, raising over 5,000lbs of food for those in need in our local community! In doing so two teachers got pied in the face as a result of a contest to see which homeroom could bring in the most food!
There was American Education Week, where students Raised their hands for SUCCESS! Each student created a hand that represented 3 goals they wanted to be successful at this year. Students and parents both created hands that were displayed in the halls.
And last but definitely not last, students at Ridgely teamed up to bring christmas to younger less fortunate students in our school system. Every year the SGA holds a Holiday Benefit party for about 25 kids from one elementary school in Baltimore County. It’s a beautiful thing seeing our students give so much of their love and time to these children. Seeing their faces light up when they arrive and are greeted by 100+ middle school students who are all there for them. There were stations for the students to rotate through… craft making, face painting, snacks and story time (with me!), Santa visit, and dance time. After each station, students then went back to their groups and opened their gifts!
So far the year has been amazing, I am really looking forward to the second half of the year!