Sunday, June 28, 2009

Hand + Struck = Manifest

Manifestation, encaustic, 6" x 6"

I'm on a manifestation kick these days. I'm not really sure what I mean by that, actually, but I think I mean I am manifesting quite a lot lately and I'd like to know what it is I am actually doing.

(BTW, I love starting posts by declaring that I don't really know what I am talking about. Seriously, it takes the pressure off right from the beginning. No performance anxiety or worry about trying to be an "expert." Try it yourself! I'll bet you'll find yourself feeling calmer. I give you permission to start off knowing little of what you are talking about. Really!)

So, with an open, slightly tired mind, I started my exploration with online definitions of the word manifestation to get my tricycle wheels rolling.

One definition of manifestation (my favorite definition by far) is the following:

"The embodiment of an intangible or variable thing." (Wiktionary)

I like the intangible part. Manifestation is taking something intangible and making it tangible. I suppose this blog post, then, is the embodiment of my thoughts about manifestation. So manifestation is about creating something visible from something invisible. Like my love could manifest as an embrace or my excitement could manifest as one-handed cartwheels. What happens when you embody glee and share it with someone? Or what about despair? The intangible is the emotion stirring inside and the tangible is the sharing of the feeling through some action or symbolic act or creation.

I looked up the etymology of the word manifest and discovered this little handy morsel:

manifest adj. — manifeste or L. manifestus, earlier manufestus, f. manus hand + festus struck (

Manifest = hand + struck, like fingers striking typewriter keys or hands molding clay or pen scratching paper. It's about making something real, tangible through some sort of creative action. And the "intangible thing" is often our imagination. It's where our dreams live -- our hopes and wishes and intentions.

Without these wishes and intentions, what are we to manifest? How is manifestation possible without imagination? How are we to transform a guitar riff in our head into music without our little imaginative muses working away inside us? Or what of the poem incubating in your heart or the love you wish to find in your life? Without imagination, dreams, and intentions, how are we to embody what we want in our lives?

And what of manifesting good health and well being? How do we do this? I think we do this in the same way we manifest an emotion as a painting. We imagine ourselves in good health, with calm hearts and minds, with lightness and joy, and we make these intentions visible. We paint them, draw them, state them, draw them on the bathroom mirror, walk them, stretch them, or share them with a friend. In all, we give them a chance to be real.

With your imagination, let your positive intentions be possible. Remember that manifest = hand + struck. This is creation. Act as if they are true. Say them as if they are true: I am healthy, strong, and vibrant. I am creative, open, and empathetic. Embody your dreams. Wear them like cloaks and walk around in them. Add sequins if you want. Just as the sequins attract the light, I believe you will attract what you wish to manifest.


  1. Courtney, This is an absolutely amazing post. I love it.
    I am going to print pieces out and meditate on them daily for
    the changes I wish to become.

  2. The idea that we partner with our imagination and intentions to manifest what we want in our lives, that our creative action gives our hopes and dreams "a chance to be real," is a revolutionary one that I did not grow up with. Bootstraps and vales of tears and Murphy's Law were more common.

    But I, too, have pulled on the cloaks you talk about, and walked around in them. Sometimes I even dance.

    I am awestruck by this post which so beautifully plays with the idea of how our fertile minds can direct the mudras of our hands to effect manifestation. Hand struck, indeed.

    And the sequins are a bright touch (intelligent as well as shining).

  3. Oh, I am so pleased that you both resonate with my post!

    I wish you both a lovely dance with your cloaks of shiny sequins, attracting the things in life you wish for.

    all the best,