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Archive for the ‘Creativity’ Category

Whenever I have to stop and wait somewhere, sitting in the car waiting for someone, or in waiting rooms, even long traffic lights, I’ve been recently taking the opportunity to really stop. Like the day has set out for me this series of enforced mini meditations. I’ve never been one for ritualised meditation. I love folks who have a shrine and incense and lovely things and sit at their special place. Maybe it’s because I’m so much on the move (being such an international diamond smuggling outlaw of creative juiciness) – it’s NOT because I’m lazy or immature or any other unevolved things <ahem>

…so I welcome each of these opportunities to stop as a rest from anything external that needs my attention and scan myself, say hi to myself, (optional hand on my chest), smile through my body and into any tensions or blocks, as if they’re patches of ice that need to be dissolved.

The genius Taoists constantly give their full presence to scanning their whole body, locating any blocked or hard-to-describe discomforts, whereupon they say ‘Ice to Water, Water to Steam’ and literally use their imagination to SEE that place dissolve and the steam leave their body.

I reckon if we practice this as a cultivated habit all day, whenever we stop, get in a bit of cheeky dissolving – smile some mischief into any tensions – watch them turn to steam and blow away, it would (will) be a massive illness preventer. Let’s make this a habit from Now and share it with others.

As we get more into this habit it’s also really enriching to do some of these practices with friends and lovers. The places this practice goes to are truly magical and sensual as far as widening the spectrum of your rich human experience goes…more on that as we go….but for now, notice when you dissolve these sensations in the body how many external problems and challenges in your life melt of their own accord as if by magic.

Please let me know, write below, when a drama in your life vanishes seemingly by itself!

This is PRACTICAL MAGIC

All creative and intimacy workshops at www.jamiecatto.com

twitter: http://twitter.com/#!/JamieCatto

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Huge excitement about launching into a whole year of my What About You? weekend workshops. Such an inspiring bunch of creatives and outlaws showing up to explode creativity, ignite our playful genius and transform shadows into rocket-fuel – or ‘demons into employees’ as one collaborator commented recently.

The sessions began as an extension of the talks and Q&A evenings I was doing after ‘What About Me?’ screenings…

http://www.cultureunplugged.com/play/2424/1-Giant-Leap–What-About-Me

…where the group conversations were becoming increasingly edgy and inspiring. Soon we were getting into what really makes us create, where the juice comes from and especially how to access it without waiting around forlornly for some abstract ‘muse’ to whisper from the walls.

Once we started meeting up in groups of 40 or 50 in various locations around the globe it became clear that our creativity had a lot to do with playing with our shadows and thereby harvesting the energy we’d wasted by hiding them and ‘dragging them around in a sack behind us’ as Joseph Campbell said (or maybe it was Jung, I can’t remember).

Soon we were project building from a whole rejuvenated and powered-up place and ideas and plans were soaring – and they still are by all accounts.

these are the dates for the next workshops:

7th-8th July, Lewes, E.Sussex, UK

14th-15th July, London, UK

8th-9th September, Devon, UK

Please have a look at the new website:

www.jamiecatto.com

…and turn right for the workshops.

Or if you’d like to reserve a place right now, click here:

http://www.jamiecatto.com/mentoring

They are all for DONATIONS ONLY – partly because I’m much more interested in everyone coming and not excluding those who can’t afford my A-list celebrity rates, but secretly also because I’m scared that if I put a real price tag on it maybe no one will show up…………….shhhhhhhhhhhhhh

http://twitter.com/#!/JamieCatto

http://www.facebook.com/JamieCattoWorkshops

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All around you, standing to attention, looking sharp in their tailored suits stand God’s Deaf Waiters. They are primed and excited to bring you all manner of amazing delights, conjure support you never dreamed of, whisper to you great ideas and triumphantly manifest unexpected good fortunes and synchronicities to further you on your Mission.

The only thing is, they’re deaf. So they can’t take your orders or understand your desires from what you say you want. No, they can only surmise their orders and your wishes from your Actions.

When we take actions according to our passions they see us getting busy and productive and they get interested, they conclude….oh Jamie’s doing that, he’ll need one of these…. and they styishly come up with timely gifts that we’d never have imagined were just what we needed, yet summoned by our intent, fuelled by our productivity and commitment, God’s Deaf Waiters are all around us, waiting to serve our highest excitements.

Tip big.

All Creativity Workshops at www.jamiecatto.com

http://twitter.com/#!/JamieCatto

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Huge excitement about launching into a whole tour of my What About You? weekend workshops this year. Such an inspiring bunch of creatives and outlaws showing up to explode creativity, ignite our playful genius and transform shadows into rocket-fuel – or ‘demons into employees’ as one collaborator commented recently.

The sessions began as an extension of the talks and Q&A evenings I was doing after ‘What About Me?’ screenings…

http://www.cultureunplugged.com/play/2424/1-Giant-Leap–What-About-Me

where the group conversations were becoming increasingly edgy and inspiring. Soon we were getting into what really makes us create, where the juice comes from and especially how to access it without waiting around forlornly for some abstract ‘muse’ to whisper from the walls. Once we started meeting up in groups of 40 or 50 in various locations around the globe it became clear that our creativity had a lot to do with playing with our shadows and thereby harvesting the energy we’d wasted by hiding them and ‘dragging them around in a sack behind us’ as Joseph Campbell said (or maybe it was Jung, I can’t remember).

Soon we were project building from a whole rejuvenated and powered-up place and ideas and plans were soaring – and they still are by all accounts.

It was an exciting prospect to mail out the new workshop dates to the 20,000 folks on my mailing lists from my music and films. But what I hadn’t banked on, or remembered, were the people I had alienated in the last 10 years by being a total self-involved dick-head! Yes, it was great to receive hundreds of loving and supportive emails from fans and friends and excited creatives and outlaws all signing up on the first day – but the replies which stick in my memory are the two or three (or was it four) letters I got back from still-frothing and vitriolic people who I had offended, hurt, dumped-on, arrogantly dismissed or, in the case of one, trashed their house (apparently). I felt like a drug addict in rehab on one of the Twelve Steps where you make amends or acknowledge all the people you’ve done wrong to.

It made me reflect on how unpleasant I had been at times in the past, mainly to cover up my insecurity at feeling so out of my depth in those situations. I cringe when I think of myself swanning about with my big 1 Giant Leap boots on thinking I had all the answers. Thank God I had such a genius team working with me or What About Me? would have never seen the light of day.

Thankfully now I really DO have all the answers, so be assured, if you come and create and connect and laugh and shadow-dance with us you’ll be in safe, all-knowing and benevolently humble hands.

these are the dates so far:

28/29 January Frome, Somerset, UK

4/5 February Amsterdam, Holland

11/12 February London, UK

18/25 February Koh Phang Gang, Thailand

17/18 March Deia, Mallorca

24/25 March Bristol, UK

14/15 April London, UK

21/22 April South Africa (tbc)

5/6 May Gibraltar

Please have a look at the new website:

www.jamiecatto.com

…and turn right for the workshops.

Or if you’d like to reserve a place right now, click here:

http://www.jamiecatto.com/workshop/signup

They are all for DONATIONS ONLY – partly because I’m much more interested in everyone coming and not excluding those who can’t afford my A-list celebrity rates, but secretly also because I’m scared that if I put a real price tag on it maybe no one will show up…………….shhhhhhhhhhhhhh

http://twitter.com/#!/JamieCatto

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In our age one of the greatest feast days of the whole year should be April 1st – All Fools Day.

A day that should be kept and celebrated religiously and universally. A holy day when no work is done. A day given over to the divine fantasy of holy gaiety. A day of the giving away in unending foolish-non-rational-generosity of gifts clothed in the marvels of the imagination. The entering of strangers houses and the placing of gifts upon their tables.

A day of mystical jokes concealing great mercy. A day when all the mercies of the year gather together to manifest themselves.

At night there should be fireworks, the night sky strewn with the holy signs of divine fun – written in streams of fire, and whirling catherine wheels that light up the dancing of the fools. For lovers this is the day of the year to celebrate love; their patron saint is the Fool, for all lovers are one with the Fool, as they are one with the artist and the poet, they are of the same race.

All Fools Day should be celebrated everywhere by everyone; some with dancing, some with feasts, some with fasting. A day when all the failures in life, the misfits, the deformed ones, the simple minded ones should be revered by all men with awe – and to them should be given gifts; gifts piled at their doors in the morning, gifts given all day. They should be celebrated as one of the mysteries of life. Yes, this would be the one day of the year in which all human beings could dissolve the cruel monotony of the utilitarian principle of work and respectability, that with the plausible teeth of its mechanism, tries to destroy the mysterious wonders of life.

thank you Cecil Collins

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It’s a can be a perilous misconception to suppose that when we create we are actually ‘doing’ something.

When I’m about to write a song, or create in any way, I often get this immediate stab of defeatism and resistance because my mind thinks it can’t do the job. The truth is that my mind is quite right! The ‘mind’ can’t write a song or give the stage performance of a lifetime because it’s a totally different part of our self that does those things. And I believe that ‘creative’ part of me is RECEPTIVE not ACTIVE. If the thinking mind had to play Hamlet, or write a ballad it would undoubtedly mess it up, yet when my thinking mind steps back for a moment and listens, surrenders, empties, lets the music or creativity ‘do’ me, then I’m in business.

When I write a song, I don’t try and ‘think it up’ any more than one tries to ‘think up’ an idea. It just arrives mysteriously from the emptiness and I write it down. I might strum a guitar gently, listening listening, and then imagine I hear a melody. I unhurriedly try and hum it without losing it, also without pinning it down too fast. It’s very hard, in my experience, to write something good on purpose. It’s the same process with making a ‘1 Giant Leap’ film. We can have all the great concepts we like, but it’s not until our own minds are silent and we let the footage speak to us and tell us what it wants to say, that we have a great film. And then I get to thinking that life’s like that too, isn’t it? The times when I listen to the events that are unfolding around me and let them speak to me, without constantly imposing my desires or limited intentions upon them, usually it all turns out harmoniously. When I listen to others, really listen, I am able to communicate and COMMUNE without my unconscious nonsense interfering.

The mind thinks it can help with everything. It’s like a over-keen, yapping, dog, full of good intentions, but also full of the misguided belief that it needs to control everything in order to succeed. In my experience, this goes for emotional as well as creative pursuits. We get heartbroken and our mind says ‘don’t worry! leave it to me! I’ll sort it all out! I’ll categorise how you’re feeling and make the pain go away!” But none of that ever works because this is not the domain of the mind. For all its good intentions, it is more often a liability than a help, too fear-ridden to be of any use. Ram Dass once told me “Fear says ‘I want to keep you safe’, Love says ‘you are safe’. So my conclusion is (subject to change) that I need to shut-up and listen in all areas. Let the song write itself. Let Hamlet play himself. I need to step back and let the great, invisible, creative spirit do all the work. All I have to do is take the money and the credit, of course!

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‘We want to put our own selves into the work. We want to create a movement of introspection and self inquiry where the viewer becomes the subject of the piece. It’s about you. If we dare to show ourselves in all our raw glory, really express what’s going on in the chaos and the shadows then we have a chance to connect to something real in our audience. Because when I talk about me, you’ll hear about you.

We need to collectively admit that we’re not fine, we’re not confident and balanced and good. We turn up to work every day pretending we’re not neurotic and obsessed and insatiable and full of doubt, and we waste so much energy keeping up this mutual pretense for each other because we think if people saw the truth, if people really knew what was going on in our heads, all the crazy truth of our dark appetites and self loathing, then we’d get rejected. But in fact, the opposite is true. It’s when we dare to reveal the truth that we unwittingly give everyone else permission to do the same. To stop holding their breathe for a moment and actually come into the room. Be here, present, vulnerable and authentic.

We’re on a mission to make self-reflection hip for just a moment, just long enough to save us. If we can all collectively acknowledge our insanity, shrug and roll our eyes at each other at how nuts it is being a human, let alone having to pretend every day that we’re ‘normal’, the amount of energy we’ll inherit that has been wasted on the mask will be enough to creatively solve any global crisis.’

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