What Wants to be Written

It seems to me that those songs that have been any good, I have nothing much to do with the writing of them. The words have just crawled down my sleeve and come out on the page. –Joan Baez

When I started this blog (I hate that word!), I had numerous reasons for starting it, but I think what I mostly wanted was a place to share what “crawls down my sleeve” in a very direct way. I have played numerous parts in my life, some of them “official,” professional, and some hidden, and I’ve always had this feeling that unless one serve in a very direct, hands-on way, there’s not much point in serving, i.e., if I work with people directly, then I get to know them, and thus practice the fundamental spiritual lesson, which is relationship.

That said, I suppose that after being given all this esoteric training for so many years, what ability I’ve gained to work through inspiration–which seems even more direct, to me–has become very important to me. I remember one of James Hillman’s wonderful books, where the first chapter–preface, maybe?–repeated, again and again, “this book wants to be written because….” and that’s the way it generally feels to me. I’m writing a book at the moment, and it isn’t easy for me, due to my FEAR OF PUBLISHING, heretofore referenced under “Writer’s Block,” but I have no doubt whatsoever that it will all work out, simply because this book WANTS to be written. C.G. Jung wrote again and again of how each of us comes here to serve a unique purpose, something no one else can do, in answer to questions that didn’t get answered before we came. Given this impulse I feel–and it does come from me, or rather through me–I believe this to be true, but I have to guard against identifying too much with it. As Dr. Jung would say, each of us has a share of the collective being of humanity that we take responsibility for, and I don’t know what happens if we don’t take that responsibility (I certainly feel I’ve fallen down on my duty on many occasions), but it is what we are made for, what we come for. That sounds suspiciously like work, but I’ve noticed that when I do MY work, it is a joy. When I do work that isn’t truly my own to do, it’s relatively miserable. Obviously, most of us are in the position of having to pay the bills, and are frequently in that situation, but still….what would happen if we lived in a world where we did what we felt called to do?

Sooner or later something seems to call us onto a particular path… this is what I must do, this is what I’ve got to have. This is who I am. –James Hillman

The soul may be responsible to a calling that is not only biological–your parents–or environmental. –James Hillman

Dr. Hillman theorizes that each of us has our own unique daemon that connects us with the divine impulse that wants to come through, driving us to perceive and act on that impulse. It occurs to me that we screw that process up when we identify with it to the extent that we think it’s ours, and subject to individual control. The ego wants to rebel about that: hey, I’m an individual and I am full of my own impulses! But what does it mean to be an individual? The older I get–on this plane, anyway–the more I realize the truth of what Hazrat Inayat Khan says (paraphrasing wildly here), that when death comes, what dies is one’s sense of oneself as an individual; life itself lives forever. So we have a real conundrum here: on the one hand, we have to cling to our egos, to our sense of individuality, in order to stay on the planet. On the other–well, for me, anyway–it begins to occur to us that, as we have always been and will always be, nevertheless, forms are always changing, and the purpose of the planet is always evolving.

The purpose is like the horizon; the further we advance, the further it recedes. –Pir Vilayat Inayat Khan

In other words, there are no boundaries when I give up all will and ownership of accomplishment. I’m still working on it!

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