May 26, 2015

Words, Windows & Mind: Soul Seeking through Writing.


I have often heard my mother say, “To write is to meditate.”

Time and again, it has echoed in my house. I can never understand why she keeps on saying this and what she means by it.

In my childhood, writing has not been a fun activity, rather a forceful exercise. If I may compare, it has been more like eating long beans and broccoli for dinner every single day. Nobody likes it, but they still eat it.

In most of the cases, whenever she has repeated herself I have thought it to be inconsequential and vague, thinking of it as just another prudish banter by my dear mother. Never have I attempted to go deep into the meaning.

Why shall I?

I have this feeling that most mothers have taken it upon them to ooze into their child a bountiful dose of oxymoron and proverbs. So, naturally this time, I do not think any different. But, eventually I have grown up.

Last Christmas, my mother gifted me a book; I am not an avid reader. I wonder why she has chosen to gift a book. For the first few months, the book decorated the new makeup rack that I have bought.

It has also made its public appearance on my Instagram page. Yes, I am a part of the generation that believes in clicking and posting, even before experiencing. I believe in showcasing and gaining appreciation sometimes. I do not know my mind, but just act as my instincts says. So, while listening to my sister’s shayari or Urdu Poem, I have decorated the place, with the book in the center, and duly posted the perfect click.

A few months later, on a lazy afternoon, when my WiFi refused to obey me, I picked up the book and started to read.

First, it was really difficult. Slowly the interest started to grow. A point came, when I sat up and finally realized what my mother had been saying for so many years.

“When holy scripts find their way onto paper, they also include a person’s soul…because the hand leading the line reflects the soul of the writer,” Paulo Coelho beautifully expressed in the book The Witch of Portobello.

In one moment, everything seemed to be clear to me. Now, I know what my mother had hinted at.

Sitting by the window, I have finally understood my mother. She has wanted me to express myself in the purest way possible, through writing. She wants me to know my own self and not become a clone of the generation. She visualizes in me a person, who has clarity and individualism. She wants a person, who does not put herself out hungrily waiting for public appreciation to build her self esteem.

I have realized my loss, my confusion within the maze of people and society at large. In the crowd of people, I am not unique. I am like one of those toy dolls, who work when twisted. I have believed that it is the only way of survival. By suppressing my soul, I have strived for liberation.

I have been wrong, on so many levels. I have been leading a mechanical life, with no soul searching. I have failed to respond to the inner self, who is striving to come out.

Do I even know who I am?

Do I know what I want?

Do I know what makes me happy?

Suddenly I felt lost. I felt so much words gurgling up inside me, waiting to be puked out. What have I done?

Since childhood, I have not communicated with my inner self. I have not realized anything on how I feel or what I believe in. Everything seems mechanical, as if I am a robot. The outer appearance has not tainted, but the inner walls are crumbling day by day. I have to piece myself together, before my soul is lost in this materialistic world. It is not too late. My mother’s saying now reiterates in my mind, and I have decided to write.

Writing is a step towards identification.

Writing is the best possible exercise of the mind.

Writing involves so many functions, which occur simultaneously. From thinking to coordinating to visualizing and expressing, you do it all. When you sit to write, all the closed channels deep inside the mind seem to unlock, and whatever is hidden comes out in the open. Then you know yourself.

When I have written my first paragraph, I have felt a certain sense of confusion within me. I am not able to understand what to begin with. But as I have continued, I have faced myself.

How to begin writing?

It is not an easy task to pour out your mind on paper. After ages of not writing, I have felt so many emotions jumbled up inside. Where do I start? What do I say? The best way is to refer to my know-it-all friend Google, seeking tips to write. Yes, it is helpful to some extent.

Referring to the advice of a certain lady on YouTube, I have bought a journal. I have divided it into three parts:

The Past
The Present
The Future

And, simply by recollecting any single anecdote, I started pouring out all that was in my mind. Yes, after an hour of this exercise, I felt light, relieved and, unexpectedly, better.

Now, writing has become a habit. It is my daily dose of good food. The more I write, the more I feel strong and happy. I write down my list of groceries, my daily routine, my daily menu, my make-up items and even the items I would like to possess some day. My journal is not just a daily record of what I do, but much more—it is the story of my life.

Writing and transformation of Self

Open the windows of your mind. Express yourself. Locked passages have never reaped fruits. Writing is a kind of liberation. It is like meditation, where you open your inner eyes and see yourself in your true light. As I keep writing, I gain clarity of mind. I recognize my inner abilities even more and start believing in myself. It, in turn, strengthens my confidence, and is building a great personality.

I will not say that writing has changed the entire person that I am, or brought riches into my life. But I can vouch for the fact that it improves the quality of living. It has happened to me, and I am sure to several others across the planet. It may be time that you shake off the shackles and piece out a few words too.



8 Things I’ve Learned from Writing for elephant journal.

Author: Richard Smith

Editor: Travis May

Photo: Flickr/Julie Jordan Scott

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