Date of Award

Spring 2022

Access Restriction

Campus Access only Research Projects

Degree Name

Master of Arts


Yoga Studies

School or College

Bellarmine College of Liberal Arts

First Advisor

Christopher Key Chapple


This paper looks at the correlation between creativity and the spiritual path by comparing contemplative practices to creative ones. By looking at sitting meditation as it’s practiced in the Buddhist lineage and paralleling it with creative writing practices, we can see how each cultivates a similar mental space. This paper explores key factors that differentiate each practice and its desired goal, while also looking at things that make them similar. Each practice uses certain parts of the brain resulting in corresponding experiences happening at varying stages. I discuss the lead into meditative states by incorporating both ancient and modern perspectives. The discussion around meditative and creative states is further contextualized with an analysis of flow states, and cultural impacts. Both practices transmute experience into something else. In creativity this takes the full scope of human emotion and experience and turns it into art. In meditation this is done through assessing and releasing karmic accretions. I also discuss the creative impulse and how it mirrors the meditator’s desire for liberation. By contextualizing both practices I argue, creativity is a spiritual process and spirituality in turn requires a certain level of creativity.