by Dusty Grein
As writers, we can use real magic to cure many of the issues and challenges we face.
If you don’t believe it, take my hand and follow me as I explain not only why I believe in this ultimate magic, but how it can help you—and anyone who reads the words you write—at some point in their lives.
Since the dawn of time, mankind has had to deal with a somewhat unique problem. We possess not only a powerful analytical mind, but a very highly developed emotional sophistication as well. These attributes often end up at war inside us, with the stronger of the two deciding our actions.
The times when our emotional side is in charge can lead to some of the best, and worst, decisions of our lives. The problem is that most of us try very hard to make sure our analytical side leads the way, and quite often that means we must bottle up and shut down our emotional selves. We also sometimes need to suppress the strength of our emotions, in order to survive the heights and depths they can take us to.
When we lock our emotions away, we tend to hide them from ourselves as much as the rest of the world. This repression of emotions can lead to many different mental, and even physical conditions, so it becomes beneficial to find a way to release them.
Fortunately, we humans also have a unique ability, that no other animal has. We can communicate abstract concepts to others, in ways that leave indelible imprints on the world around us.
When we express ourselves in a way that conveys not just thoughts but emotions as well, we call this art. The source of our inspiration to create art—whether it is through speaking, creative writing, sculpture, painting, music, or whatever other outlets we choose—is, if we look deeply, the wellspring of feelings inside us.
It has been my observation that the most powerful of these bottled up emotions can be released through artistic expression, and for many of us, that means the written word.
Some writers love to use one of the languages we share, in short clips and bursts of audible and/or visual imagery to express themselves. These communication artists may write in rhymes, metered forms, or free verse, but their poems and/or songs make connections and touch others; this writing often helps them not only heal themselves, but their audiences as well.
Others may find that writing poetry and/or songs just isn’t enough to satisfy their need to create images, characters, and worlds. Their written creations, in whatever length they work in—flash fiction, micro tales, short stories, novels—can transport others into worlds of their imagination. There, others get to share and experience a wide variety of emotional and mental images, sensations, and expressions. This is yet another way for a creative person to release the feelings in their hearts and souls, and help others do the same.
One of the best results of this process, is that writers can craft unique pieces of permanent communication, allowing them to transmit and share their thoughts, feelings, and ideas across generations. They can touch people who need to know they aren’t alone, who need to escape into a world of imagination, or who need to release their own pent-up emotions in one way or another.
This makes writing both the ultimate catharsis and the ulltimate form of telepathy; writers may, in their own way, become healers and magically transform the lives of others, by sending their thoughts, emotions and ideas out to other people beyond the limits of time and space.
We have all experienced a work of art at some point—written, drawn, sculpted, or played—that has touched our hearts, moved our souls and/or healed our troubled minds. This art may have been created today, or hundreds of years ago, and it may have been created by anyone at all. Someday, you yourself may share your thoughts and feelings with someone, somewhere, and help improve their lives.
You just can’t get much more magic than that.
Dusty Grein is the Director of Production and Design and a Managing Editor for RhetAskew Publishing. He is also a novelist, ACP accredited poet, and regular writer for the Society of Classical Poets website. Some of his favorite messages can also be found on his personal blog, From Grandpa’s Heart…