Recently I read something that resonated with me. It explained a problem in my life that I didn’t have a name for, providing a solution that I knew I had. In reading, I discover lots of information. Occasionally, I receive insight, and I’m working to develop my ability to read for understanding so to increase the frequency of insight.
“Outcomes have replaced insights as the yardstick of learning.”
With all the reading though, much of that information is funneled into my conscious mind, but quickly sneaks back out. Besides this, there’s also a disconnection between the information and it serving immediate function. In other words, the information I consume doesn’t always have an immediate practical application.
For this reason, the letters and words that give my life such deep meaning are fragmented – all floating around in seeming disarray, without tangible connection to one another.
What I mentioned above that I recently read, spoke to resolving this fragmentation through creative work. This woman wrote about her creative process – how she starts with raw materials and combines them; how she gives them form through movement; how she finishes with something that’s not only uniquely original, but whole and complete. Metaphorically rich, it immediately resonated with me as I’ve illuminated above already, further validating the need for me to write.
I write anyway, so it wasn’t a call to do something new, per se. But what it did was give my writing deeper purpose, and gave this style of writing – blogging – new function.
I used to dabble on Medium.com a couple years ago. I recall being impressed by one particular writer’s little two-sentence blurb about himself, visible at the top of his posts just below his picture. Everybody had catchy little writing-related aphorisms that made them seem worldly – at least to me. I can’t recall exactly what his was, but it was something to do with walking through life and trying to write his way through it.
Anyway, I thought it sounded really clever, and so I adopted it into my vernacular repertoire of witticisms, but I didn’t really get it. What writing allows me – among many other things – is the ability to take an idea or question or concept, and really dissect it. Perhaps at first this is only superficially, but with inventorying anything, I can really take it apart piece by piece. At the time it was over my head, but that’s the point. I don’t need to have all the answers. In writing in and around something, I can discover truth, insight, understanding. I can create bridges, connecting seemingly unrelated ideas or information, giving meaning to a new combination of notions – a new train of thought.
I’m able to bring it all together, perpetually cultivating deeper and deeper meaning in my life. Reading feeds the writing, and writing feeds the reading – a cycle I look forward to residing in indefinitely.