FREDERICK FRANCK's 10 Commandments as an artist – via Miriam Louisa

FREDERICK FRANCK’S TO-DO LIST – He called it his “10 Commandments”

“These Ten Commandments on seeing/drawing were revealed to me on a mountain, but also in a meadow, on a beach and even in the subway. For their revelation did not come all at once, but in installments, as it were, over the years, and always while I was busy drawing, and invariably on holy ground. But that may be because, while drawing, all ground is holy: unseparated from the Whole.

1 You shall draw everything and every day

2 You shall not wait for inspiration, for it comes not while you wait but while you work

3 You shall forget all you think you know and, even more, all you have been taught

4 You shall not adore your good drawings and promptly forget your bad ones

5 You shall not draw with exhibitions in mind, nor to please any critic but yourself

6 You shall trust none but your own eye, and make your hand follow it

7 You shall consider the mouse you draw as more important than the contents of all the museums in the world, for

8 You shall love the ten thousand things with all your heart and a blade of grass as yourself

9 Let each drawing be your first: A celebration of the eye awakened

10 You shall not worry about “being of your time”, for you are your time

And it is brief.” – Frederick Franck


From Franck’s book, The Awakened Eye –

The Zen of Seeing is here –

For more about Frederick Franck, visit the awakened eye website. –

Miriam has several sites – but the 10 Commandments are from here -

MIRIAM LOUISA SIMONS asks HOW MANY WAYS CAN YOU DRAW QUIET? – ‘the inexpressible is the only thing worth expressing’

Taking inspiration from ;

There is a way of breathing
that’s a shame and a suffocation
and there’s another way of expiring
a love breath,
that lets you open indefinitely.
– Rumi

Kabir says:
Student, tell me, what is God?
He is the breath inside the breath.
– Kabir


“I’ve tried many ways. I spend a lot of time “Seeing-Drawing” … the wonderful meditative practice I learned from Frederick Franck on one of his retreats and also from his classic The Zen of Seeing. I’ve tried just about every form of visual poetry: color, tone, texture. They were all effective to a degree. Frederick Franck used to assert that ‘the inexpressible was the only thing worth expressing’. I took this statement as a koan as I explored ways to express that ineffable quietude.

It wasn’t until my practice distilled down to the essential life-tide of beingness that I approached real stillness, real quietude.

One soft succulent dawn in India I drew my breath.” –




I am
but there is no ‘me’.
Wei Wu Wei

You are looking
for what is looking.
St Francis of Assisi

I am not
but the Universe is Myself
Shih T’ou AD 700 – 790

The eye
with which I see God
is the eye
with which God sees me.
Meister Eckhart

That which is seeking
is the sought.
Buddhic Scripture

The meaning of life
is to see.

The observer
is the observed.
J Krishnamurti

You are the perceiving
not the perceiver.

Either I become what I draw
or I cannot draw it.
Frederick Franck