Greeting The Muse
Apollo and a MuseThe Greeting the Muse Workshop is a type of soulwork specifically designed to rapidly enhance creativity skills. It draws on ancient traditions. When the ancient Greeks needed help, they consulted an oracle, called on a god or invoked the muse. Contrary to popular belief, the Greeks did not take their gods literally by the time of Plato. They were instead considered archetypal or imaginal figures accessed through the arts, dreams, oracles and other forms of active imagination.

metopeHowever, the Greeks did recognize that by invoking the gods, they called on imaginal personifications with autonomous natures, capable of imparting information — inspiration — not easily accessible to the ego. Indeed, many Greeks, including Plato, believed each person had his own soul-figure, a daimon, with whom direct communication was possible. Later — mainly owing to the establishment of the church — the daimon was "demonized" and its more "agreeable" aspect became known as a "guardian angel."

apulianMany scientists have attempted to reduce all of this to superstition, but even the great scientific breakthroughs turn out usually to be described as first appearing to their discoverers as whole, autonomous images. In psychology, one enduring expression of these figures is "gestalts," although they tend to be pathologized. Pathologizing is often postmodern psychology's equal to demonization.

In the Greeting the Muse Workshop, the figures of inspiration are returned to and summoned from their imaginal ground in the psyche. There is nothing spooky or "New Age" about this. It involves a very natural process of inner awareness and communication with the sources of creativity. Whether we call it inspiration or the action of the daimon, we are talking about learning to develop a stronger "metaphorical consciousness" or, in newer terms, "psychopoetics." It is a movement away from the crushing literalism of modern life toward the reanimation of soul in ourselves and the world.

makronEvery writer or artist already knows this experience today when they create a character or image that seems to write or paint itself. Business people know it when a "deal" takes care of itself. This is a kind of possession by the muse or daimon.

The Greeting the Muse Workshop was designed by Cliff Bostock, MA, as an affordable way for people to come quickly into a direct knowing of this metaphorical consciousness. It was originally designed mainly for writers and artists but it has proven to be very useful to anyone wanting to gain more self expression and deeper awareness of their purpose. It is one type of soulwork, grounded in the work of Carl Jung and most recently elaborated by James Hillman (who writes extensively about the daimon in The Soul's Code).

hellenisAlthough the work may be undertaken individually, it is usually conducted in an 11-week series of two-hour group sessions. These follow a daylong Saturday workshop that is usually mandatory. (See Upcoming Events.) Participation in each group is limited to less than 10, often around six or seven. It involves journaling assignments, art, bodywork, active imagination, group sharing and some drama work. Participants read one another's work and Cliff Bostock, who facilitates it, returns assignments with comments. Each participant also works on a creative project chosen during the first few weeks. There are no limits on the media that can be employed.

Interested persons should call Cliff Bostock, 404-525-4774, for information about costs and schedules. Or email here.

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