Saturday, January 1, 2011

Seventh Night of Kwanzaa - Faith...for the New Decade

Happy New Year everyone!

Did anyone watch the Pasadena Tournament of Roses Parade?? I watch this parade every year and it's always a marvel of creativity. Each year has a theme and this years theme was "Building Dreams, Friendships and Memories". I love this theme and I think this theme goes nicely with my guiding words for 2011 "Amazing Opportunities". I am working on building dreams in 2011 and I look forward to building more friendships and memories with you all, which will definitely be creating some amazing opportunities for 2011!


This is quite an auspicious day! Not only is this the first day of a new decade for a new millennium, tonight is also the seventh and final night of Kwanzaa when seven principles are celebrated, one for each day of this African-American holiday. I'd like to thank those of you that have been following along and leaving messages and statements of Intent with the principles of Kwanzaa for 2011 - you folks have left some powerful intentions and I'm quite inspired by them!

As you know, I have been a burning a candle for each night and reflecting on each principle of Kwanzaa and how I can incorporate these important values in my life as I move forward in 2011. The seventh principle is Faith (Imani)...

Imani (Faith): To believe with all our heart in our people, our parents, our teachers, our leaders, and the righteousness and victory of our struggle. 

I know the wording of this principle is aimed toward the African American community, but it often feels to me that Artists are under-appreciated in society and it often feels like a struggle to be taken seriously as an Artist...and it takes a great deal of Faith to BE an Artist in the face of that.

My favorite quote about Faith comes from Dr. Martin Luther King, which I think may resonate for many of you:

FAITH is taking the first step even when you don't see the whole staircase

It takes Faith to begin a new work of art - we often have an idea in our heads but our materials don't always cooperate with our vision!

It takes Faith to put ourselves and our work out into the world because we don't always know how it will be received and we need to have Faith that it will be well received by those who are open to it...

It takes Faith to live as an Artist and not worry about where our next meal will come from...

It takes Faith to trust that the Universe will provide what we need when we need it, but it always does if we ask for what we need...

It's not always easy to have that Faith when we can't see the outcomes of our efforts right away but I Believe with all my heart in Art and the power of creating with our hands and I Believe with all my heart that Creating is Healing...and I Believe the knowledge of all that can help me to "Keep the Faith*" in the face of the unknown...

How do you "Keep the Faith" to take steps when you can't see the whole staircase? What or Who do you Believe in with all your HeArt?

* - thanks to Tavis Smiley for this wonderful phrase! I often watch his show just to hear him speak that phrase at the end of it!! =-)


slommler said...

Being an artist it tough and "keeping the faith" can be a daunting task! My word of focus last year was "TRY" and it helped me tremendously. I worked on a very very large canvas...well actually two of them...and I "tried" new things and had "faith" that it would work out. It was very scary and I was anxious much of the time...but I forged ahead and the end result was amazing!! I covered the process on my blog and received such great support from the community! It was an inspiring time for me and I achieved such growth during this process!
And I believe in God with all my heart and soul and mind. That is where I hang my hat for sure!!
In 2011 I will continue to "try" new things in my work!! I am excited!
Happy New Year to you and God bless

Cathy {tinniegirl} said...

Enjoyed catching up on all your posts about Kwanzaa and your reflections. I hope that 2011 is a magical year for you and that you manifest all your intentions and dreams.

As for "keeping the faith", it's an ongoing process of practicing, falling over and picking myself back up again. Sometimes I'm good at having faith, and other times I'm hopeless. I just try to be kind to myself wherever I'm at.

I believe with all my heart that our dreams will come true if we trust.

Louise Gale said...

Happy New Year! Faith is certainly taking that leap and also knowing it will work out the way it should work out. This i how i have faith. I follow my intuition and let the universe guide me. We know what we need to do. xxx

Karen Wallace said...

Hello. I think keeping faith is showing up, trying my best and trusting. Hugs Karen

humel said...

Love that Martin Luther King quotation! It's my faith in God that keeps me stepping out :-) Happy New Year, hun! xx