What is your art? And how do you bring your heart into it?
Whether you are a healer, coach, consultant or craftsperson… If you own your own business, you have an art.
Is it how you talk to people?… Or how you listen? …Is it the websites you design? …The reports you write? … Or the blog posts?
This week, I had a million possible articles in my head that I want to write and share with you. Then I just came across this brilliant poem that expresses (as only poetry can) at least one or two of those things…
So I’m inviting you to read this short poem. Published in 1883, its message remains as true now, as ever.
Try reading it with your own business – your art – in mind.
After, I’ll share my take on it… and I invite you to share your art with us as well.
Art and Heart
by Ella Wheeler Wilcox
From Poems of Passion (1883)
Though critics may bow to art, and I am its own true lover,
It is not art, but heart, which wins the wide world over.
Though smooth be the heartless prayer, no ear in Heaven will mind it,
And the finest phrase falls dead if there is no feeling behind it.
Though perfect the player’s touch, little, if any, he sways us,
Unless we feel his heart throb through the music he plays us.
Though the poet may spend his life in skilfully rounding a measure,
Unless he writes from a full, warm heart he gives us little pleasure.
So it is not the speech which tells, but the impulse which goes with the saying;
And it is not the words of the prayer, but the yearning back of the praying.
It is not the artist’s skill which into our soul comes stealing
With a joy that is almost pain, but it is the player’s feeling.
And it is not the poet’s song, though sweeter than sweet bells chiming,
Which thrills us through and through, but the heart which beats under the rhyming.
And therefore I say again, though I am art’s own true lover,
That it is not art, but heart, which wins the wide world over.
I agree with Ella: without our hearts fully engaged, our art falls flat (that is why I never pay much attention to all the “make money now!” invitations I get on email and especially twitter!)… Yet I would also say that without the art, the heart is lonely. Well, maybe lonely isn’t the right word. But it has no way to express itself. It remains hidden and unknown. So Heart and Art are more like two dancers, working together.
As a business consultant and healer, my own art lies in the synthesis of the spiritual and the practical… In helping other business owners to disentangle emotional blocks, while at the same time finding practical business solutions to their problems.
I’ve spent many hours studying and developing what I do (Thank you Mark, Brandon and others) and many hours working through my own “stuff” so that I can be a clear conduit of truth, wisdom and compassion when I am working with people.
In the end, it is that truth, wisdom and compassion (you can call it Divine presence, or God if you like :)) that does the real work – which, as Ella says, “into our soul comes stealing“. On the other hand, without the skill – my training, the tools and the practice… That divine presence would not have a vehicle on which to travel!
What about you…
What is your art?
And how do you bring your heart to, and through, it?
I’m lookin’ forward to your replies.