Writing Meditation Helps Surface Incubating Ideas
Writing Meditation Method (WMM), the combined practice of meditation, journaling and writing, as I have said in several of my previous posts, helps mindful writers in two significant ways. One, it removes the debris of doubt, fear and anxiety that presses upon us without us even realizing it. Two, it helps surface new ideas that have been incubating in our minds.
Daily practice of inhaling and exhaling with awareness clarifies mind and opens heart. Breathing with attention maximizes concentration and creates a treasured space within where writers go mentally to write at their designated place and appointed time.
Meditation helps ideas float to the surface. From the time an idea strikes a writer to the time it is expressed in words, it slowly develops without any perceptible signs. The incubation time between the two junctures is the period when the unconscious marinates the idea with the writer’s memories and experiences. It gets elaborated and fructified with insights and intuition. When a powerful idea is ready to sprout it pushes aside the remaining debris. What follows is efflux of writing that surprises even its writer.
Releasing latent ideas in writing results not only in sudden release and relief giving pleasure but also carries with it an element of surprise, even for the writers. They hardly recognize them as their own.
Maryalice Meli, this week’s guest (See Writing and Meditation Page) discusses this feeling of surprise in her piece, “Finding the Portal.” As she learned to practice the WMM, she says she wrote such dialogue and plot twists that she asked herself, Where did that come from? How did it bubble up to my consciousness from that murky depth?
Other Mindful Writes also have had experiences such as MaryAlice’s. They too have often wondered about sprouting of ideas, cracking of shells, out of the blue ideas and feared if they would be able to duplicate such experience. Was it just a one-time vision of words? They wonder. But as it happens, time and again the good writing returns as certainly as glorious spring days after every deep cold winter season.
Ordinarily our minds and hearts are dispersed, far way from our bodies but the practice of WMM makes us whole, ushers calm as it clears debris of our mind. The memory of things done in the past and the things to be done in the future simply slips into the background. The practice penetrates beyond the multiplicity of daily lives into an indivisible realm. With one pointed-concentration we are able to access the inner place where insights, ideas and wisdom bubble. No longer are we stuck in an eddy, no longer is our creative flow static.
The Writing Meditation Method seems removed from ordinary life, almost magical. But there is no magic about it. What it does is it integrates fragmented body, mind and heart. It makes the mindful writers receive creative ideas from the wholeness of their being. Writing from their core produces extraordinary results.
MaryAlice Meli is a former elementary school teacher of reading and language arts and a former newspaper reporter. Now retired, she writes occasional news articles and features, flash fiction and is currently revising a middle-grade novel to pitch at the May Pennwriters conference. She is also revising a mystery novel.