Friday, August 26, 2016

Slowing down to a snails pace creatively.

Certain species of snails are known to 'cluster' on grass stems, fence posts and stone walls in order to ‘aestivate', away from predators on the ground.

While it may be sudden and unexplainable we need to accept any strange cessation of our creatively as perhaps the muses way of insisting we take time to brood. Not get moody and grumpy but recognize that sometimes there needs to be a period of gestation. There are times when the most creative thing we can do is wait.

Even so, sometimes this creative incubation period can be worryingly way too long. We fret. We think we have dried up for good. Those of us who build walls without mortar get a kind of waller’s block. The source of our inspiration seems to have jammed up. We are up against the wall. Stranded between a rock and a hard place. 

What we need is perspective. We need to see that there is potential waiting in the dry seed of our imagination’s dormancy. There is often a recharging going on. It can't be rushed. There should be no reason for discouragement.  Everything on the earth takes regular periods of rest over a 24 hour cycle. And many plants and animals take much longer pauses. 

My current dryness seems like a kind of mental 'æstivation' (from Latin: aestas, summer) It is a state of dormancy, similar to hibernation, characterized by inactivity and a lowered metabolic rate, that is entered in response to high temperatures and arid conditions.  It takes place at times of heat and dryness which is often during mid summer.

Invertebrate (like snails) and vertebrate animals (like frogs) are known to enter this state for months in order to avoid damage from exposure to excessively hot dry periods and the risk of 'desiccation'. Both terrestrial and aquatic animals undergo aestivation. 

And so creatively, maybe we do too.

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