Nov 13, 2010

A Chat w/ Seena Frost: Creator of SoulCollage® Evolving


I welcome Seena Frost, free spirit and creator of SoulCollage. The intuitive-collage practice of SoulCollage is a sacred and profound way of witnessing our lives through the vision and voice of the soul.  Seena has just completed her second book on SoulCollage, entitled "SoulCollage Evolving" , which you can read about here and order, here.  I had the pleasure and honor of interview Seena about her new book:  
.
Cheryl:  Seena, thank you for joining us today.  I m excited to talk with you!  What inspired you to write a second book on SoulCollage®? Please tell us about your new book SoulCollage® Evolving. How is SoulCollage® evolving?
.
Seena:  SoulCollage has been changing and evolving ever since its inception in 1989 when I first made a set of 130 cards as a project for a class with Jean Houston. Those cards were all of people, what would be now be the Community suit, and they weren’t even collages. From there it evolved into a collage process that I modified and shared with my clients as well as a practice I did for my own growth. Then it was called the Neter Card process and for many years I used it in my clinical office and taught in my living room.
.
One Saturday in 1998, Kylea Taylor and Jim Schofield came to my place to check out the Neter Card process and began the next evolutionary ‘shift’--a big one! That day they suggested I write a book that they would publish! I took a few years to write it,getting all the images of cards from people. At Jim’s suggestion, we renamed the process SoulCollage®. Hanford Mead Publishers, Inc., Jim and Kylea’s company, published this first book in 2001. It had pictures and images contributed by about 40 local people who loved the process and were eager to share their cards.
.
This SoulCollage® book and the listserv/website that developed along side it, and then the Facilitator trainings that began a few years later, were part of an evolution that was powered largely by the vision of Kylea and Jim. They urged me to do the trainings, and Kylea and I developed and did them together. We still do.
.
With the book and the trainings, the SoulCollage® community began to grow…and grow…and grow. As I taught and received input from others, and watched people quickly take to the process and transform through it, I was stimulated to add new ideas. The listserv/website became bigger as people sent in cards for the gallery. The Neter Letter developed for Facilitators. Then in 2007 the first Trainers were carefully chosen. These are Trainers who may train people as Facilitators in different states and in other countries. Alia Moore worked diligently to develop a new and much richer website which allows people to read articles, get news of trainings and workshops, and see a big assortment of cards.
.
SoulCollage® (now with this symbol to show that it is trademarked) is gaining in complexity on many levels, and a second book was a natural and inevitable next step in its evolution. We wanted to show more images from all these wide-spread Facilitators. Close to a thousand now. We wanted to say more about how the process is being used and with whom. I wanted to add words about the SoulEssence and Witness cards, the second and third Transpersonal cards. Exciting stories abound.
.
Once again Kylea and Jim, (plus Alia and Marilyn and so many others,) make up the chugging engine that is pulling the process forward. They are willing to invest their time and energy and resources to make the vision a reality. I am along for the evolutionary ride!!!! Actually rewriting the book was exciting and fun to do. My inner writer loved it.


Cheryl:  How does this book differ from your first book, SoulCollage®: An Intuitive Collage Process for Individuals and Groups?
Seena:  There are several things although the basic information about the suits and the process is still there, sometimes in an expanded form. What is new are most of the card images. We replaced many in the first book with cards that would not have any copyright issues. Also new are explanations of two of the three Transpersonal cards, SoulEssence and Witness. These, along with the Source card, are described in depth. However, probably the biggest additions are the stories and experiences of many Facilitators and Trainers of Facilitators telling about the work they do with various populations. This book also has many more photos of people doing the process, and a more in-depth explanation of how we read the images on our cards and access our own wisdom when we do this.
.

Cheryl:  Have the recommended methods of interpreting the cards essences changed from your first book? 
.
Seena:  I think the essential way we read our images is the same in both books. However, there are some interesting and helpful stories that Facilitators have provided in the new book, and I elaborate a bit more about the “I Am One Who” exercise, and also about readings.

.
Cheryl:  From your experience, what is it about SoulCollage® that touches people, and allows them to do such deep, healing and revealing inner-work? 
.
Seena:  I believe the word “surprises” is better than “touches” when I consider how SoulCollage® opens a door to healing and change. Images are transformative because they surprise us and awaken us, often in ways that words coming from outside, (from books or lectures or sermons or therapists) cannot.. Our defense systems, those ego defenders of the status quo, are onto words coming from outside, and they generally take them in and throw them quietly into the trash can, rather than allow them to change anything.
.

Images can be different. Images will grab us when we glance at them, and they can slip down into our less conscious parts of Soul and sneak around those defenders of the way things are. When your image begins to speak with your own words it speaks from a deep layer of the Soul that usually doesn’t have a voice. It is these words bubbling up that surprise us. Not always, of course, but sometimes the message surprises us into changing, into healing, into awakeness. So I’d answer this question with the words surprise, and the discovery of one’s own inner wisdom.
.

Cheryl: What is your wish...your prayer for the role of SoulCollage® in the world? 
. 
I think it has potential to do quite a bit if it continues to grow. The more people heal their own inner wars, the better they will be at healing the wars in families and communities and nations. However that is only the beginning of what I think is possible. If enough people gather, using their images to find consciousness, they can become one more of the imaginal cells forming and joining up in our chaotic world to envision the butterfly that we could become. SoulCollagers can gather and show that cooperation is better than competition, that partnership is better than hierarchy or patriarchy, that knowing the one and the many is far, far better than insisting on one way or the other. Perhaps there can be a creative inclusiveness in SoulCollage® that will be catching.
.
Cheryl:  Can you share a little about your personal practice? 
.
Seena: Every morning I draw two cards from my deck of over 100 cards. I have the cards backed by suits and I always draw one Community card and one from another suit. These become my Neters of the day and I put them up on my altar next to the 3 Transpersonal cards which are always there. The rest of my cards are in a pile in the center. I record which cards I have drawn in my daily journal, and sometimes I will email or phone a person who is my Neter and just let them know--if they are alive and I know them personally. I don’t read from these two cards. I just have them up as special Neters to remember. Other practices, not daily, are sitting and tearing out images for my trainings, and also meeting with a peer group to do readings. We try to do this at least once a month or more if possible. (I have other practices like daily meditation and yoga and walking which are not so directly oriented to SoulCollage®.)

.
Cheryl:  How has your personal practice changed you over the years? 
.
Seena:  This of course varies greatly with everyone who does some sort of a daily practice, and it is hard for me to separate out the results of my daily practice from my current life work which is so involved with SoulCollage®. This process surely has changed my life because I’m thinking about it probably thirty percent of my time. Unlike most people! But just in terms of my own evolving Soul, I believe that the images on many of my cards have taken on a vivid life of their own, and continually remind me of energies I have available to me. I think I use more of myself because of this, use more of my potential, and I balance my energies better because of this consciousness. I also have a real sense of the marvelous aliveness of the world around me, of the archetypes that inhabit our invisible world, and who are calling on me and all of us constantly. They guide us and nudge us. The synchronicities of the cards help me know this. I do not feel alone or separate in the universe and have no fear of shedding this body and going on without it into other realms.
.
Cheryl:  How do you recommend using SoulCollage to mark a Rite of Passage in our lives? 
.
Seena:  I can think of a number of ways one could mark such a moment of change. Most obvious would be to do a reading from your cards either with a group that you regularly attend or just by yourself. Ask a question about this passage and what you might need to remember, want to honor about the past, etc. Word it however feels right to you.
.

A second way would be to create a special SoulCollage card that honors this passage in some way, perhaps with a Council card honoring the archetype who feels most involved in promoting this change. A Community card might be created with a photo of yourself and others if it is a very special gathering. Certainly there might be a Committee card or
two created representing inner Neters who are excited, anxious, angry, grateful or whatever, for the change.
.
There also have been some SoulCollage experiences around passages that involved several people gathering with their cards and all doing a reading around this person’s passage and speaking to it. People can even lay out certain of their cards in a montage on the floor around cards of the honoree and photograph it.
.

It may be that only the person involved has SoulCollage cards and the others are present as witnesses. They also are thereby introduced to the process by seeing how meaningful the cards can be.
.
A session was held for one person’s birthday where, instead of the regular readings, the birthday person laid out all of her cards on the floor in patterns that showed her life story and then spoke of her story from her cards. On page 115 of the new book is a picture that was also in the first book of just such an honoring of one person. It is on page 80 of the first book.
.
Cheryl:  About how many SoulCollage® Facilitators are there, and in what countries? 
 .
Seena:  This changes by the month so I won’t try to answer it. Ask Alia! [Editor’s note: Having looked on the website, [http://www.soulcollage.com/about-soulcollage] it says that there are now almost 1000 trained Facilitators who live in or are doing SoulCollage® workshops in 20 countries: Australia, Canada, China, Egypt, England, Ireland, Italy, Germany, Greece, Japan, Lithuania, Mexico, the Netherlands, New Zealand, Philippines, Portugal, Scotland, Switzerland, South Africa, and the United States.]
.
Cheryl:  Oh, thank you Seena!  You have indeed enlightened us on how to enrich and evolve our SoulCollage practice, and our role with it worldwide as well.   Where can we find your new book SoulCollage® Evolving?

Seena:  Just go to this page on SoulCollage.com and you'll find it there.  
.
Cheryl:  Thank you Seena... it has been a delight talking with you!
.
Seena:  Thank you for having me here...it's been a pleasure.

3 comments:

LauraX said...

wonderful interview Cheryl, such insightful questions for Seena! Thank you Seena for blessing us with your presence:)

If You want to read more about Cheryl, hop on over to my blog...she is a featured guest host today!

Doe Grozs Art said...

I was so delighted to read this interview, to go to both your blog and to Laura's for such great interviews and insights. Thank you so much for this and thanks for all your wonderful, beautiful and uplifting comments on my blogs.
I so appreciate our friendship.Thank you...Thank you!

Ellie said...

Thanks so much for this interview. It renews my interest in SoulCollage. I look forward to taking the SoulCollage Training soon!