I’ve always loved simplicity, and… my mind does a great job of complicating things.
I’ve been planning a local community singing event, and I got hung up (for weeks…) thinking I needed a full band for it. And I complicate other parts of my life too—believing I need to do certain things that I really don’t need to do. It’s summer and I want simple. Simple takes me back to my roots, back to the things that are most important to me.
In Doorway work, people will get simple images—a tree or a waterfall or a cloud—and think they’re not doing it right or that it’s too elementary to be useful. But the image is a portal into another dimension. We’re not analyzing the image, as one might do in Jungian analysis or dream groups. This work is shamanic—seemingly unsophisticated metaphoric images allow us to enter a dimension that is not of this world…where we are directly touched by powerful creative energies of the Universe.
As one of my clients, a therapist and coach, said, “This didn’t just give me answers, it imbued me with answers.”
Metaphor allows us to feel Truth in a whole-bodied, visceral way.
I love what the artist Jean Dubuffet wrote about the power of simplicity in art:
“…the work of art is much less than what many people imagine it to be in the sense that it is neither necessary nor even useful that it should involve a broad orchestration. Take dance for example, I consider it absolutely pointless to put fifty sumptuous decked out dancers on the stage; for what I am looking for a single dancer will do, and I don’t need him to be dressed in silk for his dance to charm me. Neither does it appear to me any more useful that he should execute perilous jumps or do extremely acrobatic movements; these do not in my opinion add anything. In my experience they may even spoil the whole effect. Similarly, the effect produced by music never seems to me to be improved by the use of large orchestras, and the Bedouin in the desert seems to me to obtain as much or more playing alone on his little flute. It is in this spirit that I have contemplated the idea of doing very simple paintings using very meager means which work just as well as those that have recourse to grand orchestrations and prestigious mastery of manual skill.”
Jean Dubuffet, "The Cow with the Subtle Nose" 1954