The Writing Process
Connecting the element of air and water.
When I was 16 my sister gifted me a journal. Those gradient coloured perfumed types with per page thickness of rice paper. It was very pretty and inspired me to journal even more. My teenage years were relatively turbulent and there must have been a lot that I poured into those pages through despair, frustration, anger, and tears.
Years later when I looked back upon those pages, I was horrified to read those entries. That could not possibly have been me! They were heart-breaking, full of desolation and loss. That was certainly not me. I could not identify with my growing pains. The denial was so intense that I ashamedly tore out those pages and threw it away. It never happened. Of course, those events took place and my emotions are real in retrospect. Sometimes, the intensity of experiences make us shut it all away under great duress. We supress and conveniently forget.
This action of vanquishing the bitter (and more so, shocking) memories taught me two lessons. Firstly, emotions will come and go. We have to let it flow. All the bad and all the good come in waves and in equal retributive measures. We just do not know when which wave will hit but the trick is to be such a great surfer that we smoothly glide through it all. Ideally, we are constantly in balance. Equilibrium in emotion, thought, and actions. To get there is the act of first acknowledging that there are waves and learning to not be buffeted by them. Breathing and subsequently meditation will lead us to this point of finding balance. But everything is a process. And processes take time and patience.
The second lesson I recognised was that writing all those entries helped me pour out my emotions which is the element of water but via the articulated process of thought which is the air element. I can feel but the right words need to be selected from my internal lexicon in order to perfectly express how I experienced it. Thus, big brain time. In stark reality, we see air and water as two separate entities. Alchemically they too stand for different qualities. Air is light, breezy, electric, full of ideas, chatty but can also be detached, unhinged, and ungrounded. Water represents feelings, flow, emotions, healing, sensuality. Its dark side shows us obsession, fears, paranoia, schemes, and depression.
So, if you want to bridge the element of air and water within you, consider starting a journal. Write whatever it is you feel. This process is a mark of cognitive and emotional intelligence. If you can actually express in writing, your communication patterns will also improve. By providing context and flow at the same time in words, your mind and heart are going to be in constant communication with each other. My trick is to use a blue pen and handwrite away. This too accesses a different part of the brain as opposed to typing. Your future self will be glad for the time you took to journal. It will help us be grateful for the many things in life, help us understand our triggers, and carry us through a lot of pain and grief that we can only feel but cannot make sense of at that moment.
A lot of conflict today is in communication; or rather the lack of substantial meaningful verbal exchange. We work on the basis of assumption which then leads to resentment and frustration. By writing something for yourself, you bring forth a healing balm that can soothe a many frayed tempers and all the constant confused babbling. Clear and compassionate communication is greatly felt by all…