Guided Imagery and Spontaneous Drawing: A Box of Crayons as a Therapeutic Tool

Guided Imagery and Spontaneous Drawing: A Box of Crayons as a Therapeutic Tool

Miracles are a daily occurrence in all areas of our lives. Creation is a miracle. Life is a miracle. But I do think, from my experience on a personal level, that miracles require a certain set of conditions to occur. To simplify the requirements, I would say they basically consist of finding a sense of harmony and inner peace in your life.

Two areas in which I have seen miracles occur, in both my life and my medical practice, are through dreams and drawings. The universal language of creation is symbols and images. I was a nonbeliever until I did some drawings for Elisabeth Kübler-Ross and was amazed at what they revealed about my life.

Dreams and drawings can reveal psychic and somatic information about our past, present, and future because unconsciously we are preparing the future. I will share with you some ideas and exercises so you can use drawings as a tool to help you create mir­acles in your life.

Asking Ourselves The Real Questions

The real questions we must ask ourselves are, How does the invisible become visible? What is the language of creation and of the soul? How do psy­chics communicate with animals, distant individuals, and the dead? What sees when we have a near-death experience and leave our bodies? How does the com­munity of cells speak to the conscious mind about its needs and health? How do we know what future plans our unconscious is creating?

By taking the lid off the unconscious, we can be guided by its wisdom and knowledge. It allows us to go within ourselves through the use of imagery and drawings. I have seen amazing outcomes through the use of these pathways of communicating with all parts of ourselves and the universe.

Rather than turn away from this kind of experi­ence, or not accept it because we cannot explain or understand it, I, like the astronomers and quantum physicists, seek to explore the invisible and commu­nicate with it through the language of creation.

A Box of Crayons as a Therapeutic Tool

As a surgeon I was not made aware in my training of the many uses of spontaneous and planned drawings. I have always been an artist and a visual person. In 1977 I attended a workshop presented by Dr. Carl Simonton, and in 1979 one presented by Dr. Elisabeth Kübler-Ross. The former led to my first experience with guided imagery, and the latter with spontane­ous drawing. Both revealed incredible insights and information about my life, and so I became a believer and returned to my practice, where a box of crayons became one of my therapeutic tools.

I began to ask my patients and their families to draw pictures and to tell me about their dreams to help us make ther­apeutic decisions based upon not just intellect but inner knowingness, as well as to help family relation­ ships and psychological issues. I was amazed by what I learned.

Gregg Furth, the author of The Secret World of Drawings, and Susan Bach, the author of Life Paints Its Own Span, both Jungian therapists, also helped guide me. I learned that there were many adults who were afraid to draw because they felt they were not artists and might get a poor grade in art. Children do not have that fear; they are not inhibited or self-conscious, and so it takes exceptional adults to be willing to share their drawings and want to learn from their inner wisdom or intuition, as well as their intellect.

The Language of Inner Knowingness

Inner knowingness speaks a powerful language and can be used for prevention, treatment, diagnosis, and prognosis of an illness or emotional problem, as well as to make decisions, such as where to go to col­lege, who to marry, whether to take chemotherapy, and what nutrition one needs. Very often what one fears may be portrayed in a drawing as very therapeutic, and the conflict between intellect and intuition re­solves to the benefit of the patient.

Through drawings we can learn and discover what is within us and available to us. Drawing opened my mind and led me to pursue knowledge in a way that I had never been exposed to. I now refer to myself as a Jungian surgeon, and I use drawings in my therapy groups and through my website to help guide people in their lives and decision-making processes.

Symbols also open the door to something greater than any one person’s wisdom. They connect us to our inner knowingness, creative instinct, rightness, and connection with our creative designer. This communication can be done anywhere on this planet, with anyone, because the symbols are a universal language, just as universal as our myths are. They can be miracle producing and require minimal supplies — crayons and paper.

Following is an exercise for you to experiment with and see what miracles appear in your life.

Miracle Drawing Exercise

First, make sure your crayons or colored pencils include all the colors of the rainbow plus black, white, and brown because every color has meaning. Then get some white paper to draw on. I am not going to tell you what the colors mean, or what different areas of the drawing represent time-wise, because I don’t want you thinking about what you’re creating. This should be a spontaneous drawing. Also, after you finish, I suggest you put the drawing away for a day or two before trying to interpret it.

At that point, your unconscious will no longer be blinding you to what you drew, so you can learn from the symbols. Here are some options for you to consider, depend­ing on which apply to your life and situation. This is not about your skill as an artist but about what your unconscious wants you to be made aware of. So don’t ask your children to draw it for you.

  1. Holding the page vertically, draw a picture of yourself. For all other drawings, hold the page horizontally. You can also do a separate drawing of yourself at work.

  2. Draw your home and family, and be brave enough to ask your children to do it also.

  3. Draw an outdoor scene you create from your imagination.

  4. Draw a picture of any choices you are consider­ing, from where to live, what job to take, and who to marry to anything else that is on your mind.

  5. If you have a disease, you can draw yourself, your disease, your treatment, and your white blood cells eliminating the disease.

  6. Draw something you are hoping and wishing for yourself and for someone else.

When you are done, and have waited a day, go over your drawings and ask your family to join you, if you are comfortable receiving their comments. Think of the many aspects of the drawings as repre­senting you, just as a dream does. For help interpret­ing your drawings, read the books mentioned above or get in touch with me through my website,

Happy Miracles! Bernie

©2011, 2014 by Bernie S. Siegel. All Rights Reserved.
Reprinted with permission of the publisher,

New World Library, Novato, CA 94949.

Article Source

A Book of Miracles, Dr. Bernie S. SiegelA Book of Miracles: Inspiring True Stories of Healing, Gratitude, and Love
by Dr. Bernie S. Siegel.

Click Here For More Info or to Order This Book on Amazon.

About Bernie Siegel

Dr. Bernie S. SiegelDr. Bernie S. Siegel, a sought-after speaker and media presence, is the author of many bestselling books, including Peace, Love and Healing: 365 Prescriptions for the Soul; and the blockbuster Love, Medicine & Miracles. For many, Dr. Bernard Siegel—or Bernie, as he prefers to be called—needs no introduction. He has touched many lives all over the Planet. In 1978, he reached a national and then international audience when he began talking about patient empowerment and the choice to live fully and die in peace. As a physician who has cared for and counseled innumerable people whose mortality has been threatened by illness, Bernie embraces a philosophy of living and dying that stands at the forefront of the medical ethics and spiritual issues our Society grapples with today. Visit his website at


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