When I first began to explore the concepts of right brain and left brain thinking, each hemisphere seemed so confusing. I had been attempting to separate their functions and features…hearing reference to being a left brain or right brain thinker – creative minds and analytical minds – it seemed so black and white like you had to to pick one or the other.
What I hadn’t discovered was the balance of the brain is anything but separate. This mirrored my own path for growth. We each draw from both hemispheres no matter our areas of personal interest or perceived strengths – be it strategy you find in a game of chess or painting an interpretive landscape. Our concentration and focus grows one set of skills or another from natural given areas of strength that each and every one of us have. Sometimes these natural gifts take time to be discovered.
Our free-flowing ideas for a painting from the right brain needs the structural parameters of the canvas from the left. Our game strategy from the left greatly benefits from awareness of the opponents emotional state from the right. They are absolutely interwoven to create a beautiful tapestry of life.
Each hemisphere provides an amazing service to us as human beings. We have the ability to retrain our brains causing wires to fire together and develop new or different thought patterns and skills through our conscious choices of what we choose to focus our thoughts and energy on. Neurons that fire together, wire together. Thus a pattern is carved, like rain water rushing through the dirt and earth on a slope.
Art is a broad word. Anything can be an art form if it has our attention and patience. Creativity is an outlet of self-expression as well as a seat of self-education. When we look at an artist’s painting or play a game of chess, we feel something, those neurons firing together are the lasting impressions from the experience – how we choose to process that experience shapes our future encounters of similar situations or visual stimulations. Giving us grounding and context as a starting point to navigate the world and assist in finding our natural inclinations. From those preferences, we can choose what we want to expose ourselves to, what parts of ourselves to nurture and what to let go that doesn’t feed our higher good – curating our inner and outer worlds.
Art is a teacher. Art guides us to understand different perspectives and how others experience the world. Looking at our own lives and everything that surrounds us through an open but grounded mind allows us to become gentler and kinder – to ourselves and all others.
Popular culture utilizes art to shape our thought patterns. Below is a beautifully illustrated advertisement series – educational psychology of why this ad is so powerful aside, it shows the beauty and highlights the strengths within ourselves. Enjoy. Neurological Reference: Buddha’s Brain by Rick Hanson.