Welcome to another episode of Reiki&Life. Today, we would like to introduce you to Elisa Guietti, a self-employed visual artist and holistic therapist based in Edinburgh, who recently became a graduated Reiki Master teacher.
Please enjoy this interview with Elisa.
Tell us a bit about you: origin, occupation, hobbies, dreams,...
I am originally from Italy and have been living in the UK, between London and Edinburgh, for the past ten years. I work as a freelance community artist and energy healing therapist and collaborate with several charity organisations and community groups in Edinburgh. I also co-run a little studio in St.Margaret’s House, where I offer intuitive art, meditation classes, and therapies. I love spending time in nature, dancing, singing, creating art, and exploring life in a ceremonial way. As well as Reiki, I practice Shamanism and Tantra Yoga, so plenty of tools to honour and connect with the energies around. My dreams and visions are many, and I love to observe them taking shape little by little in their unique way. I dream of a free world where we can reconnect with the Earth and with each other. And I dream of supporting the creation of this new world with my gifts and all the aspects of my life.
When and how did you discover that you had an artist within you?
I have been connected to my creative side since I was very little, as many children are. I used to draw a lot, sing, dance, and write quite freely till I started school. Despite all the conditioning, I continued on the creative path and also studied for a degree in Fine Arts. The traditional academic settings, however, didn’t work much for me. I was pretty blocked, and my paintings were often a fearful result of the far too many exams and demands of university life. After my graduation, I moved to London and stopped painting and drawing for some time. Moving away from home allowed me to find my true self and my identity received a good shake. I met people from all around the world that offered me a very different view of art and creativity. I started to create again and find joy within the process. I took a course in Children Illustrations, and that also helped my imagination to flourish. I slowly started to explore my identity shift with the creative process as well, and that was just the beginning of a long journey of self-discovery through the arts.
Why do you think so many artists like Vincent Van Gogh or Salvador Dali were considered to be both genius and mad at the same time? Do you have to be a bit crazy to be considered a great artist?
I guess that they were simply challenging their society and the reality around them. Many artists offer an alternative vision and experience of life, and it can sometimes feel a little bit uncomfortable. Often, artists are sensitive and visionary souls, not particularly in tune with the controlling system behind our world. Being asleep doesn’t necessarily mean being normal, and being free doesn’t necessarily mean being mad. Artists are very connected and are, in essence, clear channels. They often have a strong call to free themselves and others by supporting the evolution of our world.
Who is your favourite artist and why?
I appreciate and admire the work of many artists, but I always felt very inspired by Wassily Kandinsky, Henri Matisse, and Mark Rothko. I particularly like art that elevates consciousness and embraces the audience with positive energy. However, I also support art that challenges the audience and helps to raise awareness about the issues of our world.
I have been fostering and creating social art and healing art myself for the past few years, and I believe that these practices are powerful tools for both the artist and the audience.
When and why did you start your spiritual journey?
My spiritual journey started when I was very little, and it was simply a choice of the soul. My childhood was quite a big push into the spirit world, as often is for many healers. Life around me was challenging at the time. When the physical world doesn’t feel such a safe place, the soul has to wake up, and the connection with the spirit becomes a refuge. I remember that I could see more than the physical world around me but used to think that everyone could see that as well. My gifts moved back and forward during the teenage years, but I was very unaware and scared. There was a lot of mess in my life, and at some point, everything shut down for my highest good. Many things happened in between, and many questions remained open in my mind, but life continued its course unconsciously. Then the experience in London started to open up my vision to the true self. The night of the soul year, the year gap in Italy, between London and Edinburgh, also deepened my understanding and awareness. The questions became too strong to be ignored. I slowly reopened the door into the conscious self, the soul, and spirit. And that was the beginning of a more conscious spiritual journey, which unfolded here in Edinburgh.
Art and spirituality, how is it possible to combine?
Art is creative energy at work, which is Spirit expressing itself in its true and divine form. Nature is a mirror of the soul and can help us to understand this concept a little more. When we truly observe the natural world, we can see the creative energy infused in everything. We are part of nature and therefore have access to the same creative energy, which simply is life force energy or Spirit. It means that we are all creative beings, with no exception. Art is a tool to explore and rediscover the divine energy within ourselves. Our ability to create is our ability to shape life, heal, transform, and transmute energy. There is no separation between art and spirituality, as one implies the connection with the other. When we create art from the heart, we become a channel and allow our soul or highest self to communicate. We can free ourselves through the creative process if we choose to trust and let go of the old misconceptions about art and creativity. When we open our minds to the unknown, and to the greatness of who we are, we have the chance to experience the real magic of life.
Have you noticed any major changes in your creations since Reiki became part of you?
My art began to shift when my soul started to awaken. Of course, Reiki was one of the practices that supported the unfolding of this experience. It brought more freedom and awareness on the connection between the creative process and the movement of energy. Reiki helped me to understand creativity to another level. For many years I thought that art and energy work were not related, and I was a bit unsure about my path. Then, suddenly I realised that all the things that I was exploring were in perfect alignment with each other.
What was your intention for becoming a Reiki teacher?
I believe that Reiki is a beautiful and gentle practice that can support us through our life. In essence, it reflects who we truly are, and that can open up our life to its real purpose. The gift of remembering is the most powerful gift that we have and can share with somebody else. My intention as a Reiki teacher is to support people in rediscovering their inner light and the truth of who they are.
How different will be your approach from other Reiki teachers and who are your potential students?
Every Reiki teacher, like any other person, has different experiences and gifts to share. Their journey and personality will be part of their teaching's method and will also create a resonance with the students. My approach is an expression of me, of my life journey, and my understanding of energy. I work intuitively, so I would, of course, support and facilitate a connection with the intuitive self. I work with the creative process, and for me, it would be very natural to offer some creative tools to connect with the energy. Through the years, my experience developed with several practices, which also enriched my awareness and understanding. Perhaps that will call people that have a similar openness and interest. My main wish is to create a gentle and supportive space that aims to empower people in their journey of self-discovery.
What is the most powerful tool for you in the System of Reiki and what had the biggest impact on your personal changes?
To me, all the tools implement each other, move, and act together as a whole. The precepts create a solid base for growth and personal wellbeing. The hands-on provide the benefit and support of touch and connection with the energy. The meditation creates the stillness required to deepen that awareness. The mantras clear away the dust of everyday life. Perhaps I can say that when I started to practice Reiki, I felt very connected to the
“hands-on” tool. With time and more practice, the other elements have grown my attention too.
What else do you do apart from Reiki to support your spiritual journey?
My constant search for truth led me to explore different practices that have expanded my understanding of energy and life itself. I support my spiritual journey with a beautiful Shamanic practice, which offers me the opportunity to connect with the sacredness of life in all its forms. I also practice Tantra yoga, which helps me integrate the changes within my energy, and again supports the connection with everything. My creative practice is also a fundamental tool within my inner journey. Intuitive art, conscious dance, singing, and writing are some of the most powerful tools I have encountered in my life.
You start now a new path as a Reiki teacher. What’s your next step?
My next step is to offer group training and perhaps develop courses for children as well. Also, I would love to offer creative workshops to existing Reiki practitioners as a way to bring their practice a little bit deeper and explore the connection between energy and creativity. However, the real step will be in being open and allow things around me to change for my highest good.
The meaning of life: why do you think we are here and what’s your main goal in your life?
We are here, as souls, for many different reasons, of course. But to k