The image for my latest painting came while having sex. Truthfully, this is a pretty common occurrence for me – the space inside of my head gets very clear and dark and quiet for moments during orgasm and images often emerge out of that silence or I travel out to the images, depending on the perspective you take. This is not really something you get the heads up about in sex ed and I spent a lot of time thinking I was a real weirdo.
At this point in my life I know that this is a “thing”- information attained through sex is considered Erotognosis and is part of several esoteric paths including Left Hand Tantra (which I studied in India and Thailand in my 20′s). Knowing that has helped me to embrace the experience. Its a lot easier to be cool about being sucked into the void when you know others have gone before you.
This time around I got a very complete picture – which is a rarity. Most of the time it comes as a detail or two and I have to engage the process of painting to get the rest. But when it comes complete its a call to action, marching orders. Part of receiving these images has always been a commitment to recreate them and bring them to others through making art.
The picture was of a large black disk, a naked female torso, a crow barely visible against the disk in the background and I saw the image of and also heard the words “11 stars”.
The black disk reminded me of an object on my partner’s dresser and so I asked him what is was (Later of course, in the moment the priority was still pleasure) and he explained that it was a black mirror used for scrying. Oh. Cool.
So now I have to clear my schedule and rush to the studio while the image is still “hot”. The more time that passes the more the mind is going to distort it, just like any other memory. Actually, how successful I will be is dependent on not getting the mind involved at all, to shut my eyes and ears and just leave the image hovering out there as I move toward recreating it. In these moments I have to trust the mystery of the process and just make.
3 days into it. All I have been doing is meditating on that image and mixing colors, laying down material. I’m in a kind of trance. I think the painting looks stupid and kitschy but I have to keep being faithful to what I saw. And I am dying to Google search “11 stars”. I’m tired and once again wondering if i am crazy to spend my time this way.
4 days and I am finished. I can open up my mind again and return back to the world. Immediately I go to my computer for gnosis, take two. Dear Google, please explain to me what I have been doing with all my time.
Search: “11 stars”
There is one constellation with 11 stars. Corvus, the Crow. Bingo!
Crows are commonly associated with magic, the power to manipulate physical appearances and the void or what has not yet taken form.
Search: “scrying mirror”
Scrying has been used in many cultures in the belief that it can divine the past, present and future.
Search: “crow crescent moon naked woman veil stars light” (because I might as well go for it)
First thing that comes up is a book written in 1861 by W. Winwood Reade called “The Veil of Isis”.
“When Isis died, she was buried in a grove near Memphis. Over her grave was raised a statue covered head to food with a black veil. And underneath was engraved these divine words:
I am all that has been, that is, that shall be and none among mortals has yet to raise my veil.
Beneath the veil are concealed all the mysteries and learnings of the past.”
Ok, I’m into it. This makes the hours where I question my sanity totally worth it – all the symbols linking up to form a web of meaning.
Search: Isis crow.
The Secrets of Isis was a 1970′s television show in which a school teacher transformed into Isis by use of a magical amulet. In the show she had a pet crow who would run errands for her.
Oh magical, connected universe, I adore you.
“La Vecchia Religione”, Mixed media (ash, copper, oil paint, china marker and resin) on wood panel, 30″x30″, 2013. Note the reflection of my studio in the photograph – the center of the painting is a functioning scrying mirror.