“I am my own muse, I am the subject I know best. The subject I want to know better.”
Frida Kahlo (1907 – 1954) Mexican painter
Why do I love the art of Friday Kahlo? I love Frida because she was (is) inspirational. She approached herself with authenticity and honesty. Every piece of artwork she created was a spark of her soul.
Frida had a challenging life, disabled by polio she abandoned her studies to be come a doctor and turned to her passion for the arts. She was mostly unknown to the major part of the world until the 1970’s.
I first learnt about Frida when I visited Mexico in 1989. A friend who knew that I love art took me to the Frida Kahlo museum. I was instantly smitten by her work. Her self-portraits allowed me to see this amazingly self-observant woman, her depth, how feelings, her thoughts, her entire life. I understood that a piece if art can show much more than just what it depicts. Art is not only skin deep.
The Therapeutic-Art Enrichment Group Program can help you bring awareness and light to those places in your consciousness where blocks to your fulfilment hide and it will replenish your Soul.
I wrote this article below recently. The reason why I put my thoughts on paper was because I started to sense how much life there is un-lived in the world. In fear of something or other, we have collectively retrieved to a hamster-wheel kind of life that seemingly provides us with the security we need in order to function well. But functioning well is not living to the fullest.
I recently realised that there is a great deal of pain that has not been dealt with. We perfectly understand that men/women who come back from a war-zone are in in some kind of post traumatic sock. However, when it comes to civilians we do not seem to recognise when we are in sock and/or loss. The COVID-19 Pandemic and its after effects that we are living in right now is one of those times of ‘shock’ that we do not realise. We have been separated from loved ones so we often experience loneliness but we do not seem to notice. We try to move on as quick as possible, going back to our lives as it was though it is often not possible. So, we are at a loss.
As we neglect to acknowledge these feelings, they pile up inside of us and often end up making us feel depressed. Plus, we unknowingly pass our sense of pain down to our children because we leave them unattended. Children tend to be very sensitive to their parents emotional state.
Emotional pain is just like physical pain of a wound. If you leave it unattended it gets infected and spreads.
Often the solution is as simple as sitting down, closing our eyes, scanning the world of your feelings and emotions and embrace them like a child who needs a cuddle. Sometimes it takes more …
In my art-filled courses we use tools that allow you to acknowledge and heal from a sense of loss, from a crisis, and find ways to let go of the past, traumas and sock in order to be able to live your life to the fullest.
I grew up during the socialistic oppression in Hungary. I did not particularly experience growing up traumatic at the time because I was born after the revolution of 1956.
I must have been in my early thirties when during a heated conversation with a colleagues, a trainer called me a ‘nazi’. He did not exactly say that, he said something along the lines of ‘you command and treat your environment like a Nazi officer’. This comment hurt me badly but I could not see why at the time. Years later it dawned on me that the military regime I grew up in had moulded me into an army officer. I had become a savage.
So, one day I set down and started to remember how we had lived and I started to notice the excruciating pain we had endured over those years of tyranny. During the revolution, my grandfather had to watch his mates being hanged on tries unable to help them.
My grandmother was sent to prison for ‘black-marketing’ that she had been forced to do so she could feed her family. She served three years. During that time, she lost most of her hair and left the prison as a broken person. In the meantime, my mother was raised by her 3-year older sister.
The other side of my family, the bourgeois side, lost everything, because they were marked ‘class-alien’ which meant that they did not belong to the now favoured working classes so most of their possession had been repossessed by the state.
Loss, after loss, after loss. I still do not know how they survived it all. As a result, however, and because they had probably nothing else left to give, they left me with their unresolved pain.
I look at some of my family members’ constant rage and I see how much pain they are in. Somehow, all we can do is to pass our unresolved feelings of loss down onto the next generation, and the next, the next ...
Nobody seems to take the courage to knowledge and deal with the debilitating sorrow we have been living with as a nation for decades.
There has always been a dark hole since I was born.
At the beginning when I was surrounded with loving care there was still a tangible darkness present.
The regime made our lives a misery.
The mental illness that lingered in every room made me feel insecure.
There hasn’t been a moment in my life when I felt at peace.
I know no peace. I do not know how to relax.
My life is a roller-coaster of anxiety, depression and a sense of helplessness.
Now when I am down – it happens more often these days, now that we are in COVID-wave2, because suddenly I started to feel trapped again – I sit with it. Though there are a lot of ‘uplifting’ ways to ensure that I do not feel depressed, I still prefer staying with it.
Depression is part of my tapestry. I grew up with mental illness, depression and suicide around me. I recognize these beasts that tear life out of the living through the weak nerves. These beast operate like spiders, they web your thoughts first, then they paralyze you and finally they take over your whole life.
In my observation, most people with depression try to treat themselves with a form of addiction – drugs, alcohol, games, sex, etc . Unfortunately, none of these cure the ailment of the mind. Instead these hold the victim even more bound in depression and anxiety; in a dark hole where they are now digging themselves in even deeper.
I now think that both anxiety and depression are distillation of earlier events into a pitcher of darkness filled with paralyzing fear.
The spiritual and meditative path that was shown to me 20 years ago has been a blessing. It has not turned my life into a constantly blossoming flower garden though. It has, however, contributed to me becoming more accepting of it. Therapeutic-art became my tool and companion in discovery and release. Whatever shows up, I look at it and put it down on paper. And so we meet, face to face. As a next step, I usually allow my inner light, my personal healing power to shine through the darkness by creating ‘Illumination’ Mandalas.
Though I still do depression and occasionally I allow it to run me for a while, I have also become an observer to it. And this is the key. I now sit with my beasts: my anxieties and my depression. They are dark forces that make my heart ache and they exhaust me to the bone. I know both of them well. I call them relatives. I have understood over the years that they are my companions this lifetime. I can sedate myself to the point where I do not recognize them any more but it is not necessary. They do not have control over me any longer because now I recognize them. I look into them, into the darkness, I see them, they see me, and I am not afraid. I am not scared of falling into that pit any more because I have awareness of it.
It is like walking on an unknown land. Until you know the territory, you are afraid of falling into a trap. I know this territory well now. When they show, I just sit with them and let them speak to me. I let them show me the lesson. They are my personal TV-Show-Hosts. They appear on the screen to introduce the next program on my main channel called Life.
By not trying to squash or numb my depression and anxiety but allowing them to be, they let me be. We co-exist. They are part of me. They want to be recognized, accepted, and embraced in the totality of who I am.
Most of the pics are my own. Top pic artist is unknown.