The word “tzelem,” Hebrew for image, invokes the idea that humans were created in the image of the divine. While this has traditionally been interpreted in moral and spiritual terms, the human figure, in its physical form, has served as a spiritual image in the Kabbalah and various other mystical traditions. Recently, I have taken up the practice of drawing and painting the figure, and I have found this practice to have a meditative and spiritual dimension. In this blog I record my efforts to improve my rendering of the human figure, to develop my skills as a draftsperson, and to enter into the magical alchemy of painting with oils. I also intend to share some of my thoughts and ideas about art and the creative process and to discuss their connection to my other areas of interest, specifically, philosophy, psychology and rational-mystical theology.
I am an author and psychologist in New York, and on the Core Faculty in Clinical Psychology at Fielding Graduate University in Santa Barbara. I am the author of four books on Jewish Mysticism, the latest of which, "Kabbalistic Visions: C. G. Jung and Jewish Mysticism" is to be be published by Spring Journal Books in 2009. My websites include www.newkabbalah.com, www.jnfindlay.com and www.epsilen.com/sdrob