A Sense of Integrity

Continuing my series on The Artist’s Way by Julia Cameron, I come to chapter four–Recovering a Sense of Integrity. The definition of integrity is “adherence to moral and ethical principles; soundness of moral character; honesty.” Did I really need to recover my soundness of moral character? I don’t think I ever lost it. But I will admit, I’m not always honest with myself. Integrity is also being true to yourself, “the state of being whole, entire, or undiminished.”
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So, I will be honest with you, my readers, and tell you that I am having a difficult time stringing two thoughts together this morning. I will be true to myself and not try to conjure up some happy horse manure. I feel as if my brain got derailed and I can’t get back on track.
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Brain derailed

Four nights ago I was on my way to my Artist’s Date, a Native American Drum Circle. After winding my way through dark, narrow country roads for nearly two hours, including two wrong turns, I was frustrated, angry, and late. Three minutes from my destination, a deer popped up out of nowhere and hit my car. I slammed on the brakes and she rose up on hind legs, front hooves pawing the air above my hood, then disappeared.
I screamed, crying hysterically, horrified that I might have hurt this beautiful, gentle animal–and in all honesty, enraged at yet another obstacle that would make me even later to my meeting. After a few minutes, I gathered myself, turned the car around to see how badly the doe was hurt. She was gone and left no trace.
When I finally arrived at Drum Circle and told the group what happened, my wise teacher of Native American ways looked at me, slowly nodded and said, “Deer medicine. Hmmm, creativity, gentleness, new adventures.”
Where is she leading me?

Where is she leading me?

Animal “medicine,” in Native American culture, is the essence of an animal and what that being has to teach us. There are countless stories and myths of deer luring hunters deeper into the woods until they are lost and encounter a new adventure. I have been pondering all week on what new adventures in creativity this animal guide might have in store for me.
Stay tuned.

2 thoughts on “A Sense of Integrity

  1. Great post. The deer wasn’t an obstacle but a sign signaling new creativity, a new adventure. NanoWriMo perhaps? It just goes to show that there is such importance in how we interpret our “story.” P.S. Glad you (and the deer) were not hurt.

    • Thanks, Rae. I do have some ideas for National Novel Writing Month (NaNoWriMo) that would take my writing in a different direction, i.e. a new adventure. Keeping my eyes and ears (and mind) open for further insights and interpretations.

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