Inner Universe – Christopher Harding
While researching for this site, I came across an article written by Christopher Harding. Impressed with the man’s writing and brilliant concepts, I investigated further. I found that he was not only a prolific writer, but also an accomplished musician, producer and artist. I wrote him, asking if I could republish his article and a piece of his artwork. He said, “Sure!”
Since then, I’ve had the pleasure of meeting him in person. Amazing guy. You can find lots more about him here.
This is the first in a series of articles. It’s lengthy, but well worth the read.
How to Access Unlimited Creativity—A Songwriter’s Dream Come True
By Christopher Harding
Is it possible that we can access the realm of unlimited creativity to write songs, create art, and solve problems? Sounds pretty wild, doesn’t it? If this is truly possible, imagine what we might be able to churn out in terms of music, art, and solutions to the world’s challenges. The possibilities are literally endless.
Well, according to a number of those who’ve dedicated their lives to creativity and innovation, this amazing feat is not only possible, it’s accessible to any of us who are willing to learn, practice, and get over ourselves enough to implement what we access.
I first began to learn about this process when, as an audio producer, I started working with Omni Magazine on an audio version of the science-based publication. As I interviewed writers like Ray Bradbury, Isaac Asimov, and Arthur C. Clarke they all talked about a process they engaged in where they, in essence, put up their antennae to access a “creative slipstream” (my words, not theirs) from which they would tap into a whole flow of creative ideas. Bradbury described writing the ideas down in the morning in a free-flowing fashion, using his right brain and then, in the afternoon, engaging his left brain to the edit the material he’d captured in the morning. The more I explored this concept and the more I began to utilize it in my own songwriting, the more easily the songs came.
While working on this creative approach, I also encountered a laser chemist by the name of William Guillory, who had his own very interesting theories about the process of creativity and innovation. Volunteering as a human guinea pig for some of Guillory’s experiments of the mind, I also learned that not only could we open up a conduit to the creative realm in waking hours, but we could also program our sleep to work on creative challenges while we were asleep and then assign a time and place for that information to download into our conscious mind the following day when we were awake. This process, called Sleep State Programming, was being taught by Guillory to scientists, inventors, and other creative types from all over the U.S. and abroad.
So, enough about the background information, let’s get down to the fundamentals of unlimited creativity, at least as I have experienced them. We’ll cover this information and the included processes that go with it over several segments and will focus in this article on understanding the basic model from which we’ll work.
In order to get an easier grasp of the processes I’ll describe, I’m going to introduce a learning model for the sake of illustration (and it’s only a model, so please don’t over-literalize its elements). The model is based on Guillory’s work and my own adaptations of his models.
According to this model, different levels or dimensions of energy radiate information to different levels of our human consciousness (think of it as frequencies that are perceptible by different receivers).
For example, starting from the lower end of the model, the physical world is experienced by our conscious mind (the realm of the subjective self and our dominant personality), which filters the information it is conscious of by way of our five senses and passes it through for “filing” into the subconscious mind and on for input into the body mind (unconscious mind) or cellular memory (which runs our autonomic body processes). Interpretations of the conscious mind alter the actual physical data into perceived information. This is the realm of the ego (which makes distinctions for example, between “self” and “other”). In the western world, this realm is dominated to an important extent by the left brain, which views as “real” only those things which can be measured, felt, touch, seen, etc.
Emotional energy (e-motion is often described as energy-in-motion) is perceived by our “extra-sensory” preceptors which also sense shifts in people’s energy fields. This information is picked up by our subconscious mind (the realm of our sub-personalities) as a more subtle or subliminal communication. (The only reason we refer to this level of perception as “extra sensory” is that we have lost touch with these abilities and therefore consider them to be rare or “special” when in fact they’re merely a natural part of our human abilities.). This dimension could be said to have more to do with the right brain functions which are not bound by time, space, linear logic, or the five senses. Many indigenous and non-western cultures tend to function more regularly from this dimension (which for them is less “sub-conscious” than it is a “different level” of consciousness).
Intuitive hits or subtle energy is communicated to and received more at the body mind level (this is the level of the biological self and the one which animals are very attuned to; it enables us to perceive the cellular and chemical messaging of other animate and inanimate subjects; and, due to cellular memory, it allow us to have excellent pattern recognition).
The collective informational dimension could be described as the realm where all known information resides (it’s what occurs once superconscious energy flow is organized into informational data bits). This level of energy is perceived by what one could call the supraconscious mind (experienced as the state of excitement and rejuvenation one experiences when ideas are flowing; or stage one of being in the “zone” ). One could say that known information has a grosser or heavier energy than pure potentiality, which is what exists in the universal creative dimension. It is from this level of supraconsciousness (or what some call the “Higher Self”, “soul” or “Atman“) that we access innovative ideas or ways to re-organize or adapt existing models or processes into new products and services (for the mystically minded, it is from this realm that one would access the “Akashic records” — the history of all that has happened throughout the cosmos through the course of time).
The universal creative dimension interfaces with what we can call our superconscious mind (or the level of consciousness that transcends our limited self-identity — from a performance standpoint, we might experience that we are playing beyond our own ability — from a religious standpoint, this dimension might be considered the realm of Spirit, the Absolute, Buddha Nature, Brahman, etc.).
The superconscious realm (or dimension of unlimited creativity) is most regularly accessed during deep states of meditation or prayer (when brain studies show that the left and right brain waves, which normally act independently are functioning in synchronization with each other and thus are believed to enable greater ability) and sometimes in our dreams when we move beyond the ordinary state of dreaming (which takes place at the subconscious and unconscious levels) and into the realm of extraordinary dreams where radically new ideas emerge. It is from this level of interface that entirely new paradigm-breaking ideas surface that utterly radicalize or shatter existing knowledge, processes, methods, ways of being, etc. From this dimension flows a deeper wisdom or understanding that exceeds current human knowledge. Information from this realm challenges our ideas about what’s possible and pushes us toward a greater potentiality than we may be comfortable with. When involved at this level of creation, people often describe that the song, idea, invention came through them (i.e. we don’t feel a proprietary sense of ownership, per se, but rather a responsibility brought on by what one might describe as a participation in something larger than oneself or an “act of grace,” as some have described).
You can also see in the model that information is passed back and forth between levels of human consciousness (though this is typically done without our conscious awareness).
The key, of course, to gaining any value from this model will be to understand how to purposefully, intentionally access the different levels of energy and how to control the flow of data back and forth between our own levels. If we can do this, you might be able to deduce that we can access pure potentiality from the realm of unlimited creativity or capture collective knowledge and direct this down through our own layers of consciousness into the conscious mind where we can output it into a tangible solution or product (song, painting, invention, resolution, etc.).
That process, however, is one which we will embark on in our next article, so stay tuned. If you engage fully, it will be a most interesting journey, for by engaging all of our levels of human consciousness we enable ourselves to expand beyond the 8% to 10% of our mind’s capacity that many estimate we operate at, into realms that invite us to access our full (and, some may say, intended) potential.
To add your thoughts or experiences about creativity, please visit the Passionate Genius blog on How to Access Unlimited Creativity.