Tag Archive | Vincent Van Gogh

#mindfully choosing the palette of colour you paint with..

#mindfully choosing the palette of colour you paint with..

I was leading a retreat at Worth Abbey on watchfulness over the weekend. On the Sunday morning I got up early and walked to the Abbey Church at 6.15. There is very little light pollution and the night sky was very open.

The stars beckoned me to look at them, stopping me in my tracks. Their beautiful silence brought tears to my eyes. I have always liked the Don McLean song Vincent (starry, starry night) about Van Gogh. The opening lyrics came into my head as a refrain:

‘Starry, starry night,
Paint your palette blue and gold…’

The rational part of my brain said, ‘the words are not right’. The actual words are:

‘Starry, starry night,
Paint your palette blue and GREY..’

But a voice came back to me saying, ‘no, you paint your palette blue and gold.’
It felt like a message from the stars for the New Year.

For me blue speaks of faithfulness and stability and sticking with people, God, the way of watchfulness and mindfulness. Gold speaks of the brightness of hope.

What mindfulness has taught me is that I can choose the palette of colours I paint my life with. Each thought and feeling has its own colour. Sometimes I have painted with grey, allowed depressed thoughts to become a ruminative pattern in my mind. I have learnt that they are passing events in my mind, that they are not me and that I can let them go.

As I have noticed them and let them go, blue and gold thoughts have sprung up. The message of hope came as a gift from the stars, ‘paint your palette blue and gold…’ I can mindfully choose the palette of colour I paint with. And so can you.