Receive, Release, Give

Our hands are one of the most important tools we have to connect with the world – we use them to touch, explore, grasp, work. In this Drawing Meditation we use them as a conduit for connecting with our inner world. We let the drawing distract our conscious mind so that our inner thoughts and intuition have space to express themselves.

You Will Need

  • Sheet of paper big enough to trace your hands onto.
  • A pen for tracing and writing
  • Color media of your choice: pencils, watercolor, pens, crayons, etc.

If you can carve out an hour to focus on this, that is ideal. At a minimum give yourself 30 minutes to draw. Rushing or feeling time pressure keeps the conscious mind at the forefront and your inner voice may not make an appearance.

Try to work in a place where you won’t be interrupted; block out distractions from your devices; and maybe enrich your environment with gentle music, a nice scent, or a cup of tea.

How To Draw

In this meditation we focus on finding out what we want to receive in our lives and what negatives we want to release or positives we want to give to others.

  1. Trace your hands onto a large sheet of paper.
  2. Decorate them as you like.
    • Take your time
    • There is no right or wrong way to do it
    • Jump in and make some marks; see where that goes
  3. As you work, let your mind gently wander towards
    • releasing
    • giving
    • receiving
  4. Write your thoughts on your hand drawings.
    • RIGHT hand, receiving
    • LEFT hand, releasing and/or giving

How to Review

Interpreting your drawing can be an interesting second phase if you wish to dive deeper into the process. Here are some questions you can ask yourself. The answers are yours to find.

  1. First, take a look at your decorations to decide on what they might mean.
    • What color is most prominent? What does that color mean to you?
    • Are there any of the rainbow colors missing from your drawing?
    • Is your decoration abstract or realistic?
    • Did you include fingernails on your hands? Rings on your fingers? What do you think they could represent?
    • Are both hands the same? If not, consider meaning in the differences.
    • Did you assign meanings to the colors, shapes, or patterns as you drew? Do they still mean the same thing now that the activity is finished?
  2. Next, review what you wrote.
    • Is your writing about objects? Connections? Growth? Ideas? Emotions? Actions?
    • Are there themes that match/pair on both hands? These may be points where you are ready to make a change.
    • On the left hand, did you release more or give more?
    • Which words came to mind first? Maybe you knew you’d write them before you even started. You already know what you need to do; let the drawing be a call to act.
    • What words popped into your mind unexpectedly? Those are thoughts from your inner voice, your intuition. Give them extra attention now that they are in the world with you.

This is a drawing by ‘M’ from a recent session. With limited art supplies on hand, they focussed on a repeating pattern representing the one thing they want to give and receive: a good life.
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Mediatinker, Kristen McQuillin, is an American-born resident of Japan since 1998. This blog chronicles her life, projects, thoughts, and small adventures.