What colour are Mondays?
How does modern architecture sound?
How do clouds smell?
What is the temperature of the colour yellow?

Can you look up at the night sky and hear the Music of the Spheres?!

These are questions someone with Synaesthesia might be able to answer. Synaesthesia is a neurological condition where the pathways of the senses are wired in ‘unusual ways’. Such people can smell colours, hear architecture and ‘taste the days of the week’.

I don’t think I have Synaesthesia because I can choose to perceive things “the neurotypical way” but I can also choose to perceive things in a different “shamanic mode” and this can resemble Synaesthesia somewhat.

The good news is that everyone can learn shamanic journeying and access this ‘magical mode’. I just taught a shamanic journeying class yesterday where worlds of possibility opened up and people new to shamanism did brilliant work. I am teaching this class (“The Shaman’s Map”) again on Saturday May 16th!

So… what is colour?

Sunlight contains all the colours of the rainbow mixed together. All of them together are known as “white light”. When white light strikes a white object, we see no colour because it absorbs no colour and reflects all colours equally. However, if it strikes a ‘red object’ (say a London bus) it means only waves with the ‘red’ frequency bounce off – the bus absorbs all other frequencies.

Therefore white is not a colour – it is ‘the presence of all colours mixed together in perfect measure’ and black is not a colour either. Black is “the absence of all colour”.

Artists will refer to white and black as “colours” because it is hard to make a painting without those options. And the reality of mixing all colours together (visit any nursery school!) is a brown sludgy mush – because we never achieve that perfect balance of all colours when we do so!

So… when a painter comes face to face with a white canvas, you could say that all colours are already present in that ‘sea of whiteness, that sea of possibilities’. So painting could be viewed as a kind of sculpting – allowing something to appear that was already present in some way. When we make sacred art, we make art where spirit is embodied on canvas (to stick with the canvas analogue). We allow something to come into form – through us and through our hands.

Our family has sailing boat and sometimes I am up all night looking at the star constellations (and trying hard to commit them all to memory). Inevitably comes that magical moment when “colour returns to the world”. The stars fade and the landscape slowly erupts in colour. The Sun rises with a magnificent display of colour too. I never get enough of that moment, I never get enough of the magic of colour! I never tire of the magic and invitation that is a white canvas either!

I wrote the paragraphs above for  my Art of Healing newsletter. It comes out six times a year, on the first day of every other month.

I have recently moved my “quirky homemade creations” to Mailchimp instead. It has been a steep learning curve!

f you would like to receive my newsletter, with updates on courses in sacred art and shamanism I teach and other events I organize – please drop me a message.

I have not yet worked out how to operate a ‘sign up form’. Always more to learn….

Wishing everyone the blessings of Spring! Two robins are building a nest in our garden. They come for breakfast every morning….