Why I Write
′′ Whoever does not have two thirds of the day for himself is a slave “.
— Frederich Nietzsche
“The beauty of the Earth is a bell of mindfulness. If you can’t see it, you must ask yourself why. Maybe something is blocking the way. Or maybe you are so busy looking for something else you can’t hear the call of the Earth. Mother Earth is saying, ‘My child, I’m here for you; I’m offering all this for you.’ It’s true: the rays of sunshine, the singing birds, clear streams, the cherry blossoms in spring, and the beauty of the four seasons — it’s all there for you. And, if you can’t see or hear it, it’s because your mind is too full.”
~ Thich Nhat Hanh, Zen and the Art of Saving the Planet
“The people were told today by Arvol himself that straight up said to get the word out, tell everyone you know to pray. A worldwide collective prayer is a power that can handle anything this evil has for us, easily! It doesn’t matter if you’re here. We need a continuous collective prayer from now till we get through this. Pray for the people. Pray for the old. Pray for the little ones running around. Pray for their little ones and their grandchildren. Pray for the water. Pray for our grandmother the earth, she is crying for us to help her! Please help us pray.” — Miskooquewezance Means
After considerable resistance over the years I got on my path. I couldn’t avoid it any longer. I bucked and whinnied and tried to run away, throwing jokes over my shoulder, but the gods wouldn’t have it. They herded me little by little, using accidents and incidents, some painful, to set me straight. Now, I’m on the path and I don’t expect to get off it again for the rest of my days. It’s my fate, my destiny, to write, to love writing, to seek understanding through language and meditation and images. I wonder why I resisted so long.
I’m on this tiny stage, speaking into this tiny microphone to my tiny audience, just as surprised as anyone what comes out of my mouth. When I’ve said my little piece, I return to the audience and forget what it was all about. If someone reminds me I may not remember it until I see the images. Oh yes, I remember now. Interesting idea, nice language, I might say.
I’m not channeling. I know what I’m saying, but I have to get very quiet to be able to write anything worth reading. Writing for me requires a kind of calm meditative state. If I’ve been out running errands, it will take several hours before I can write anything. I may have to have a siesta first. There are different mind states and, for me, it’s important not to be distracted by any kind of busy-ness if I’m going to attend to my inner world.
Maybe because I’m a longtime visual artist, images set the stage for my theme of the day. It’s a feeling first, that then finds its way into language. In the days I wrote only for myself, I unconsciously wrote in a code only I could de-code. When I started to write for communication, I heard complaints that I was not making myself clear. I had to learn to anticipate misunderstanding, to edit for clarity. I still work on that.
Medium has been the place where I could learn to write. Because images are so essential to my creative process and because Medium encourages that mix of images and language, it’s a natural home for me. I never expected to make a big splash or feed my bank account. I wanted to know, though, if I could say anything that someone needed to hear on soul level. My aim is to speak on that level, to the extent I’m able.
If anyone is, in turn, able to benefit, I’m doing what I’m meant to do.