Monday, April 27, 2015

#Writing and Living Within the Reality of Change

To state the obvious, change is inevitable. Everyone's knows that but why can't everyone make the adjustments imposed by change?

Because we do not clearly see the promise on the other side of change and because change is uncomfortable, that's why. 

Whether we are writing fiction or non-fiction the reality of this dynamic (change) confronts our story, haunts the characters within it and speaks to a secondary reality: uncertainty and fear of the unknown, but on the other side of change is often the fulfillment of one's calling. A writer's ability to unfold the events leading to this change establishes great characterization of fictional characters. The notion of change tends to influence good writing and successful living.  In life, one's ability to confront and accept change establishes success, as defined by one's ability to meet one's goals and live the dream envisioned. 

Pay Attention
How do we begin to successfully confront change? First, listen to the voice of the inner spirit. Yes, there is a conversation going on within the community of self. Meditate and pay close attention. Breathe deeply and hear your own thoughts as well as the thoughts of your own characters. There is always a song playing in your heart, your job is to appreciate the lyrics. Pay attention.

Act upon the area of your discomfort. This is the promise of living by the spirit; it is the ultimate act of faith. When we meditate and pray and come to the point where we feel our area of comfort is invaded by our own thoughts about who we really are, we have arrived; however, our first inclination is to run away. In fiction, show the resistance of your character. In real life, focus upon your own resistance.  I urge you to not resist, instead, lean into the winds of change and call uncertainty and the fear of the unknown by its genuine name: Undefined Opportunity. The truth is before us at this point. This point represents an epiphany, land-marking the point to which we are propelled to higher consciousness. Paul, in the Bible, called it the second heaven.  It is a place where the known self tends to let go and turn away from resistance.Carl Jung called it: the morning of awakening.

Lean Into the Wind
In establishing your fictional character in a story and in establishing your character in life, overcome fear by leaning into the wind. The force behind the wind is a sign of your readiness. You will not feel the wind in your face unless you are already equipped to make the change. At the end of the day, you will come to realize that the wind upon your face is the breath of God, reminding you to lean this way.

 Let's take a quote from my book, Ascend to The Secret Place "Infinite wisdom tends to knock at the door where capacity lives."

Pay attention, act and lean into the wind.

Friday, April 24, 2015

The Teaching Pen

Writing can be a corrective force in society. When writers connect, magic happens. Life is often much like poetry for that reason. When we allow ourselves freedom, we begin to observe our emotional connection to poetry, an observation without walls, an observation peculiar to oneself, a "permit" if you will, to experience the writer and the writer's external world of creativity. As we observe life, peculiar to our emotions, we tap into eternal truths about God, the universe and the self...all of which we so passionately flee.

Life viewed from the outskirts tend to stage events not for the living but for the onlookers to life. Life then becomes a series of events camouflaged by the theater of sensationalism. This activity numbs the mind and spirit to the greater reality, the point where the observer experiences life peculiar to oneself, untainted by sensation. We might call this experience, "freedom."

This writer is often reminded of Eccliasiates 9:"14 in the Holy Bible. I wrote,  extensively, about this subject in my recent book, Ascend to The Secret Place. The passage reads, "There was a small city with a few men in it; and there came a great king against it, and besieged it, and built bulwarks against it. (15) Now there was found in it, a poor wise man, and he, by his wisdom delivered the city, but no one remembered the poor wise man. (16) Then said I, Wisdom is better than strength: nevertheless, the poor man's wisdom is despised, and his words not heard."

I truly enjoyed writing within the parameters of this subject and found the process  intensively eye-opening.

The poor wise man in the passage above, as well as the writer of the passage, were corrective forces. The wise man was labeled, poor, not because he was bereft of finances but because he was unpopular and sized up a popular king. The hand of the writer was certainly moved by the infallible hand of God as the word "poor" was effectively used to present this wise man in a spirit of humility, otherwise the rich, besieging king would have destryoed the man before the wise man was able to free the city.

"There are few things in battle as effective as the element of surprise."

If life is a battle for the mind and spirit, then notice the stratagems of the king.  Those bulwarks are walls and walls are thoughts and beliefs. After all, one cannot enter the house of a strong man and rob him unless he somehow bound the strong man. We are bounded by unbelief and a poor set of false beliefs about who we are. If you believe yourself royal, you should walk with a royal stride, speak with a royal tongue, and command with the confidence and charge of royalty. Re-consider your beliefs and observe to see if there are walls or freedom. I urge my fellow writers to use the pen to help set people free.

Wednesday, April 8, 2015

Writing Creative Non-Fiction

I have heard many good speakers who serve the public well from a platform. I have been touched by these speakers. Some are social activist who dedicate themselves to leaving the world in a better condition  (safe, healthier, more peaceful) than they found it. Hooray to those individuals who understand their purpose in life.

 As much as I admire them, I have noticed, many of these speakers are terrible writers. Let's fix that, here and now.

If you have a platform where you are influencing people to live a better life, as I have defined, above, then perfect your writing skills so that the information you convey may be also effective in print. Here's how. Focus upon one valuable idea at a time, poco-a-poco.

Reflect upon the genuine value that you bring to the table. For example, you may be an activist who warns us of the dangers of consuming improper foods. You may focus upon one of the adverse results of eating such foods. For example, some foods actually contribute to the creation of tumors in the body that leads to cancer. Such an activist might open a short essay with a form of the following question.

 "What have you eaten lately to create cancer or prevent cancer in your body?"

Now, go ahead and present your material.

A body building activist might open a short missive with the following question, "Which exercise will you practice today to prolong your life?"

Now, present your material.

An inspirational speaker, like this writer, might ask, "Which afflictive words have you eliminated from your vocabulary, recently?" Or, "Which non-afflictive emotions are you using this week to advance your life?"

Now, I will present my material: Let us view human emotion beneath a spiritual microscope..........

All of the above listed open ended questions tend to set the stage for the information you are about to deliver. It creates curiosity. Remember, due to your passion for life, you have something to say. We want to hear it. Don't underestimate your value. Don' t make the mistake of assuming that people already know what you are designed to teach. You are a unique snowflake and the manner in which you present information is unique. Do not lose impact by failing to  properly set the stage.

When you open up with a life changing theme in the way of a questions, minds open to you, allowing the essence of "you" to connect.

You only need do one thing: reflect upon a single value that you are offering the world. Think of one thing a listener can do (based upon your teaching) to improve life, today. Now, that being said, build a question around that idea.

I hope that these simple hints will help. Be blessed, be fruitful and multiply your teachings as an aid to all mankind/woman kind...people.

People may hear your words, but they feel your attitude. - John C. Maxwell