It numbs your mind. It gives you false confidence. It makes an alien chemical reaction. Combined with complicated, tiresome processes, it allows you to function differently.
Without it, your mind wakes up in a new way, with a new pathway built. Another type of living experienced.
I ran a twelve week creative writing workshop and halfway through I forgot to take my Prozac. The people who came to the classes were astonishing. All in all twenty five women and men dipped in and out as and when they were able. From the beginning there was weirdness. There was a synchronicity that could not be explained which permeated the entire twelve weeks, and indeed continues to this day.
One of the strongest coincidental commonalities the group experienced was the rather bizarre fact that everyone had worked with indigenous tribes or first nations across the globe. I didn’t even tell them to begin with. They would email their typed-up free-writes for me to suggest something and I would be shocked. At first I wondered if I was hypnotising them into a common theme and I changed my own patter to see if that helped. In the guided meditation part, I would invite them to see, write and sigh love into their own names. That was it.
So, why the feckitty feck feck did they each write constantly and consistently about ways in which Mother Earth needed love and help? They wrote from the point of view of trees or whales. They wrote instructions in stories about how to save our planet. They are animal whisperers, shamans, seanchais. That first four sessions I let the sweat roll off me. None of the prescribed heavy duty chemical warfare anti sweat stuff worked. We met once a fortnight in the village hall by the shore. In the main room the exercise class thumped the floor. They sat at desks and I showed them a technique I had developed for myself over the years. It’s a simple brain balance meditation,nothing fancy. It’s almost just mindfulness and a simple way to access the creative side of your lived experiences.
They wrote and wrote and wrote. They forgot how to spell and just let everything free-flow. Then I showed them tricks on how to shape and develop some of it. They drank it in, celebrated with summer strawberries. They each found their voice! (NO, not everyone, it did not work for everyone.)
One woman gave me her copy of The Malahat Review at her last session with me. I took it with me the next time the group met. There was a new man that next session. A local man, a used car salesman, who had worked and lived in The Malahat. Both had worked with the same indigenous tribes there. Bizarrely another woman joined a few sessions when she was in the area. She works with indigenous tribes in Ontario. And then there’s another man who lived with the Aborigines in Australia. And the woman who ran away to Oz with the wrong clothes…
All I did was show them how to listen to the creative stillness in order to start writing. They were already extraordinarily talented writers. Over the next few months I hope to showcase some of their writings. They are also now trying to build on line author pages. If you wish to support them I shall post links when I can.
I totally forgot to take the Prozac because I had to sit and read, absorb and try and improve on the writings of my students. I had to stand up, sweat and teach week on week and it was so hard. Last month I also offered a few free workshops to the Moray Feelgood festival. One night no one turned up. Another night I nearly broke down when the Elgin Library staff had no knowledge of any booking. Last weekend, at yet another event, the space was double-booked and the organiser offered me the area beside the toilets to work from. I nearly collapsed. But I didn’t. I held out my cool steady palm, looked him in the eye and said, next time pay me and organise workshop space please. Even though my tongue wanted to stutter, my scalp wanted to run water and my belly thought about lurching I smiled as sweetly as I could and suggested he speak to Scottish Book Trust about funding and events.
I suppose this is a very Irish way of saying thank you to the poets, empaths, shamans and artists who joined the wee workshops in Findhorn village.
Next, I am going to Inverness with this course. It’ll just be four weeks, once a week and although it isn’t for everyone, please get in touch if you think it could work for you.
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Tagged Elgin Library, Findhorn village, Inverness, Irish, Mindfulness, Moray Feelgood festival, Mother Earth, Prozac, Scottish Book Trust, The Malahat Review, writing workshop
Saoirse Canon hails from north west Donegal between Dunfanaghy and Falcarragh. She is a Witch and Seannchai as were her ancestors. She has come to Scotland to learn new ways….
Rooting yourself to Earth for the tale to emerge from deep within. Finding a conduit for your voice, a narrator for your legends. So that you can echo the ancestors’ wisdoms. I invite and show you how to begin to write from the still place of only love you have inside of you. I teach you how to reach inside for the geography of where love began, for you. Go to the place, town or river which can stir a longing in you. Bathe and glorify in that feeling of place then allow the free-flow of all that can be access to the blank page. Let your words be written as a river from your gut to the world. Write your vulnerability but do not display it raw, I can show you a few tricks to shape your tale, I can show you the art of crafting your voice. Playing with words, to word a scene, to show a moment, to shine a light, into, onto, around a piece of time in a place somewhere. Naturally.
Friday and Saturday – see you there!
This morning one of my creative writing students from the Moray Feelgood festival sent me this, as his morning ‘free-write’. I asked my teenage daughter to read it aloud to me while I did dishes and laundry. She researched the topic online as she read, stopping to look up words like ‘redemption’. She found the #metoo and looked for sites offering redemption to perpetrators of abuse.
“We need a ‘Dear Harvey’ movement all over the planet” she said. “We need an amnesty and a way forward.”
I love my daughter. Indeed,let us begin with love. Here’s a letter to Harvey Weinstein from John Hyslop. John Hyslop is the heart of all Earthlings…..
John Hyslop is a big blue whale
I wish you the depth of healing that your psyche has called you to.
You might think WTF, and quite rightly so. I feel you squirming like a trapped rat. Death and suicide are easy options. There’s no way out. Your expensive top end lawyers will be adding a new till roll to their calculators many times a week as they TRY to do damage limitation.
Please know that I understand the place you are in personally and I honestly say that I love you; the soul of you, that wants to unburden.
I THANK YOU.
I ask you to choose life everyday, no, every second of each day, until you are on your knees brought to the very edge of sanity. So that the gunk in your system is purged and purged again, until your inside world is clean.
I will and can, if you choose, stand with you as you unravel.
Please start reading and watching anything you can get your hands on regarding redemption as this is firmly where you’re at !
Here in this hell of yours, there is an opportunity.
You finding your soul centre will let you look at a career way beyond what you’ve been. You may even yet be an advocate for the end of human trafficking !
Why not secretly open a trust while you still have some money with maybe Ashton Kutcher as a Trustee, this money protected and only for this purpose, not yours.
There’s no way we can save you from this call of your soul. I, as a man, wish to thank you for the Karma that you have helped to awaken on this planet. Nobody else has yet been outed in such a spectacular fashion.
I mean that sincerely as you have done an amazing job in your movie business and now you are firmly on your own ‘Stage of Life’.
It’s happening all the time all over the world.
Please know that all your biological children have your genes in them. Please stay alive to show them your true worth. You have the ability to do your time for the actions and face honourably your wrong doing. You have the business acumen to turn this to serve others.
Thor’s hammer has fallen on your identity. It has cracked open those pieces to be brought to the light. You will be humbled to begin your next chapter.
If you want to meet me you will find me,
blessings of deep Grace to you Dear Harvey.
ps. and one last thing, this is no quick fix in some expensive facility, this is for the rest of your life.Your broken parts will never reform the old you.
“We have never met anyone who had low self-esteem at the moment of orgasm.” –
Dossie Easton and Janet W. Hardy, The Ethical Slut, Crown Publishing, 2009.
When you write, are you asexual? Are you unable to write sex? Is your writing non-binary? Is your writing homogenised to perfect politeness? If you would care to contribute to a writing workshop dedicated to writing sexuality, whatever that may mean to you.
How would you like the reader to perceive you as a sexual being? Are you free, bigoted, twisted, angelic? How do you portray this?
Writing sex scenes