“Spend time every day listening to what your muse is trying to tell you.”
Once you have created a space for your creative process and opened the door to your muses you are ready to springboard into the flowing waters of your sacred imagination. This is a way to enter the flow of life. It is there where you dive into the spring of creativity. In the waters of the sacred imagination you connect with your heart and soul and the potential to discover your creative passion. Your muses anoint you with sweet initiation into the flow of life. They spark your journey with synchronistic happenings to guide you on your path as you discover your hidden gifts and talents.
In ancient Greece or Rome if you were called upon to write a poem or compose music or share wisdom with others and you needed inspiration you would have known how to call for it. You would have raised your head and beckoned the muses, the personifications of inspiration.
The muses were the nine daughters of Zeus, the king of the Gods, and Mnemosyne, goddess of memory. They were born after Zeus and his companion gods had won a great battle against the Titans. His friends wanted to celebrate so they asked Zeus to create goddesses to bless them with singing and dancing. The muses were born and their voices combined to sing the most beautiful music the heavens had ever heard.
Each muse was named and assigned a certain area of the arts and science; Clio, the Muse of History; Calliope, the Muse of Epic Poetry; Melpomene, the Muse of Tragedy; Euterpe, the Muse of Lyric Poetry; Erato, The Muse of Love Poetry; Terpsichore, the Muse of Choral Dance and Song; Polyhymnia, the Muse of Sacred Song; Urania, the Muse of Astronomy; and Thalia, the Muse of Comedy.
It is told that when Perseus severed the snake-infested head of the great gorgon, Medussa, from her body a winged horse flew from her insides. This magical creature was Pegasus, representing the transformation of chaos into creativity.
Pegasus soared into the sky and when he returned to earth on Mount Helicon his hoof plunged into the soil releasing an underground stream, the Hippocrene. The water gushed forth and soon the nine muses appeared as inspiration from a hidden inner source. The muses are a composite of the strength and power of their father who was known for hurling thunderbolts with his bare hands, and their mother’s more contemplative and reflective ways of remembering. Creativity is born from both reflection and action. The muses shine their light on those parts of ourselves that we may not be conscious of. This is the true source of our inspiration.
There are few stories attached to the muses. For the most part, their lives were centered in patience as they awaited the call to serve the mortals on earth. Each of the nine muses has her own particular area of emphasis pertaining to the arts and sciences. Collectively, they seem to blend together and are often referred to in a singular way as, “The Muse.”
How can you, a contemporary mortal, connect with your muse(s)? Before you begin a task or creative endeavor how can you engage in the flow and synchronicities that will lead to fruition?
Creating ritual before engaging in creative activity offers a connection to your inner resources, the sacred imagination, and your muses. Sometimes the ritual is as simple as going for a walk to a favorite place in nature or lighting a candle and offering a prayer for guidance before turning on the computer. Ritual is a pipeline to the muses. In order to connect to the flow of creative and inventive energy and to be open to the possibility of synchronicity in our lives, we must first make a shift in consciousness. Creativity and flow are not the act of “doing” but rather a state of “being.”
In order to receive inner guidance from your muses (Higher consciousness) you must be in a receptive mode. In order to receive you must become still. Only then can you become the vessel ready to be filled with the waters of the Hippocrene.
I invite you to begin calling upon your muses. Who have been the muses in your life? Muses can take many forms; a fourth grade teacher who encouraged you to color outside the lines or your calico cat who gently purrs a tune into your head. You may want to create an altar to your muses in your workspace. Place a photo or image on your altar to represent the muses you have known. You may want to choose an image representing the symbol of the daughter of Zeus who most reflects your particular creative emphasis; a tablet or pen (Calliope); a flute (Euterpe); a scroll (Clio); a tragic mask (Melpomene); a veil (Polyhymnia); a globe (Urania), a lyre (Terpsichore and Erato); a comic mask (Thalia).
Write an invocation and record it to memory as your call to your Muses and open your eyes to the symbolism of everyday life. Working with your muses calls upon your powers of observation and awareness. As you circumnavigate the spiral of the seasons, let the beginning of each one be a focused time to enter your soul’s deep place of memory and discovery. This is where you will encounter your muses and in the process awaken your soul to new creative possibilities.
No great work has ever been produced except after a long interval of still and musing meditation. Walter Bagehot
Who knows where inspiration comes from. Perhaps it arises from desperation. Perhaps it comes from the flukes of the universe, the kindness of the muses. Amy Tan
Make a collage to represent your muse. Give your muse a name. Write about the physical and personality characteristics of your muse. Frame the finished piece and hang it in your workspace.
Invocation to a Muse
Oh, muse of my creative longing I invite you to join me on the earthly plane. Gather divine wisdom and inspiration and infuse my heart and spirit with inspiration, truth, and beauty. Co-create with my sacred imagination. I am ready to deliver my creative gifts to the world. May it be so.
The Realm of the Muse
Collage by Dana Reynolds
© All Rights Reserved Dana Reynolds 2011