The Alchemy of Writing
Alchemy is a process of change. If you study the Hermetic principles, you discover that there are stages of change that are present in all levels of life. This process of change is found in the natural world, in the social world, in the world of our relationships, in our financial and political worlds, and within our selves. As we become more aware of the process of change, we become more able to participate in that process in creative and self-affirming ways.
I have found writing to be, for myself, a means to both self-awareness & also a way to create change in my own life. The first such time came while I was in a painful and entrenched relationship. I was in the midst of deciding that I needed to deal in a more direct way with my significant other. I needed to involve him, to tell him that things weren't right for me. So I was coming to the knowledge (and the courage) to act in some way to change the way things were.
That process of change took a long time. It took a long time to open up to him, to tell him I wasn't happy with how things were, to ask him to face things with me. And it took a long time to find my way out of a deep ditch of tolerated discomfort and relinquished autonomy. But I had to start by seeing clearly before I could get to the business of moving on. I had previously been using writing to create an escape, not to explore something about myself or about my life in a real way. But at this particular time, I had felt a need to write about one increasingly uncomfortable part of our relationship. It was almost more an exercise in observation than anything, but in observing, I came to more than I had expected.
The brief story, "Polo's Place", that follows, holds within it a transformative moment of self-understanding. The clear sight that came out of that writing was a watershed for me. What follows, then, is both a personal expression and, also, more than a personal expression. The process of transformative writing moves through the personal. The event of transformation is held in that personal moment, taking it all to another level of meaning. This is part of the power, the grace, the magic of writing.
Link here to read Polo's Place