writingfromthesoul.net

deep play
EVERY TWO WEEKS, I send out a writing tip and three soul-inviting prompts as inspiration for you to freewrite, either alone with your timer or in a gathering of writer friends. The resulting deep play opens up whole new landscapes of creative possibility for our writing and our lives. If you are new to this kind of writing practice, have a look at the freewriting principles. And to take your writing to the next level, check out the mentoring sessions I offer, which are helpful whether you are working on a book or just beginning to find your voice.   [read more]

WRITING TIP: Use your most subversive power…

writing tip - use your most subversive power
Whether you want to challenge an inner tyrant who keeps your personal life stagnant or challenge the world’s way of doing things, there’s a power that works far better than logic and argument. Writer Ursula Leguin reminds us that “the exercise of imagination is dangerous to those who profit from the way things are because it has the power to show that the way things are is not permanent, not universal, not necessary.” We can’t do something new until we’ve dreamed of something beyond the solidity of what appears to be permanently here. Change begins with dreaming. How else could it begin? If you can dream it, you can write it. And if you can write it, you can live it.

WRITING PROMPT: Catastrophe of delight…

writing prompt - Catastrophe of delight...

WRITING PROMPT: I like it better in the dark…

writing prompt - I like it better in the dark...

WRITING PROMPT: My parallel lives…

WRITING PROMPT: My parallel lives...

WRITING TIP: Admit you’re a poet… whether you feel like one or not.

Writing tip: Admit you're a poet.
Most popular writing is all about making a point, convincing of us of a world view or an action to take. But that’s not the point of poetry. At it’s best, poetry isn’t an argument, but a mirror. It shows us something of life and like life, it isn’t always clear what it means. We have to involve ourselves in the meaning making. To write a poem, we need only pay attention to things as they are. This is why poetry so often comes through mystics and meditators: They have returned to a way of looking at the world that is closer to the unsmeared view of a small child. It has less to do with understanding and more to do with wonder. This way of looking is inside all of us. Want to contact it? I dare you to set aside whatever you’re doing, take three long, deep breaths and put your thoughts to the side. Now go to the nearest tree, patch of grass, or potted plant, and for just a minute, deeply feel, look, smell, sense, intuit — with all your attention, then write down your experience. That’s the beginning of poetry. Do this more often and along with James Tate, you’ll be able to say, “Poetry is everywhere; it just needs editing.”

Writing as a spiritual practice

Interested in deepening your practice and using it as a form of spiritual integration? Try using writing as a spiritual practice (read my article about it here). And if you are in California, join me for a day-long retreat to practice with others. This is writing as deep play. We’ll cultivate the mind of meditation so we can access the natural stream of our expression. In an atmosphere of warmth and non-judgement, free of critical evaluation, we will create a welcoming space to be daring and self-revealing, loosening the grip of our critical minds so that expression can flow freely, which is one of the ultimate goals of meditation. More information

WRITING PROMPT: Thoughts the animals had…

Writing prompt: Thoughts the animals had...

WRITING PROMPT: Dreaming myself alive…

Writing prompt: Dreaming myself alive...

WRITING PROMPT: When my eyes touch someone…

writing prompt: when my eyes touch someone...

WRITING TIP: Ease your way back into writing.

Writing tip: Ease your way back into writing.
You’ve been mute. Even if you’ve been busy writing reports, dissertations, and emails, you haven’t been articulating anything from your insides, either to yourself or to others. That can create a feeling of hollowness, a deep loneliness, even if it is in the background. So do as David Whyte advises: “Put down the weight of your aloneness and ease into the conversation.” It’s a tender moment, and you’re bound to feel a little awkward and out of practice. So forget about bold proclamations and careful schedules and goals. Instead, think easy. Write for 10 minutes, starting with the prompt “Right now.” Do that for a week. Or sit on a park bench or in a cafe and run through the senses — I can smell, I can taste, I can feel, I can see, I can hear. Just get the wheels going again. Give yourself a chance to remember that you have words, and they can be used in other ways than you’ve been using them. The desire to go further will spring naturally from that.