I just posted a new book in the library--actually, of course, it's an old one--Modeling My Life written by American sculptor, Janet Scudder.
Here is learning by heart:
"I had been out in the garden playing with the flowers. The colors evidently stirred something latent in me for I can remember, as distinctly as though it had happened yesterday, the feeling of intense excitement that swept over me and carried me into the house and up to my grandmother...
"How did they ever get these beautiful colors?" I demanded breathlessly, holding a small bunch of flowers out towards her.
"She put her hand and touched me and then the flowers--for she had been blind for many years--and very solemnly and impressively explained that colors were given flowers by God.
"He painted them!" I gasped.
She nodded, still very solemn.
At this she laid down her knitting and her voice came a bit uneasily. "Why do you ask me that, my child?"
"Because I want to paint some just like them. I've got to! I must!"
I am sure the creative instinct was born at that moment. I knew that I had to make something beautiful. I just had to express in some tangible way the strong emotion I was experiencing over the beauty of the flowers...
Poets and writers have grown into the habit of calling this desire to create something beautiful the divine fire. Divine Fire! Perhaps it is that. Surely it is divine in the joy it gives. I have always thought that incident with the flowers--even though I was only six--must have been a tiny little flame from a great fire.
I just pulled this out of another old book I found with more children's plays. The writer reaffirmed it's through the voice that we develop a love of reading and literature. And why do we teach reading?
"Does not the teaching of reading really mean teaching our children to understand all the mighty thoughts of the world, whether they be expressed in music, or poetry, or art, or in the characters of the heroes of literature?"
The act of decoding words does not make a child a reader. The act of constructing sentences does not make a child a writer. Only the imagination can do that. Imagination = The thinking of the heart. The thinking of the heart can only be cultivated through the Arts. WEH is about cultivating the heart through the arts--Music, Pictures, Poetry, and Story.
The Pattern for Learning in this morning's scripture study, John 14:15
If ye love me (Heart, Desire) Keep my commandments (Mind, Law) And I...shall give you another Comforter...even the Spirit of Truth (Spirit) Whom the world cannot see--(Only the heart can see rightly; blessed are the pure in heart for they shall see God) But he know him, for he dwelleth in you. (you feel something the eye cannot see--Faith)