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Thomas Moore on Creativity

Thomas Moore, Thomas Moore on Creativity. (Boulder, CO: Sounds True, 1993)(2 tapes, 2 hours. 40 minutes, $18.95)(1-800-333- 9185)

Readers who found Thomas Moore’s Care of the Soul and Soul Mates powerful and profound are in this tape as well. So, for that matter, will listeners who haven't read either of these books. Mr. Moore brings his wonderful understanding of the nature of soul work to bear on the process of creativity. This tape explores how creativity is an expression of the soul, and how we can re-imagine the creative process in new ways.

The question he explores is not how can we be creative, but what is this experience called creativity? What are the fantasies and thoughts behind it? One of his theses is that in the creative process, we participate as co-creators in the divine creativity of the world. This philosophy, well-known to midieval minds, has been all but forgotten until its revival by theologians such as Fr. Matthew Fox.

Sometimes what we need to "do" to find and express our creativity is simply stand out of the way and let the soul have its way. Sometimes the artist is absolutely the last person to ask what he or she intended when creating a piece of art. Mr. Moore labels this "intentioinal fallacy," or the willingness to risk letting ourselves be foolish. There is a shadow side to creativity, as well. It can be sadistic in its agressiveness or masochistic in its vulnerability. Eros is an important part of creativity. In developing this theme, Mr. Moore reminded me of Sam Keen's book, The Passionate Life: The Stages of Loving, a book I have been highly recommending for years. Just as Mr. Keen asks what would happen if we embraced the world as a lover, Mr. Moore asks, what would hapopen if universities taught how to love a subject, rather than merely to understand it. What if we learned to love animals, for example, rather than learning their habits?

This tape is an enjoyable and thought-provoking presentation that approaches creativity from a fresh and, of couse, soulful, perspective.

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