Puddles of Light
September 1, 2011 § 2 Comments
Over the past few months I have had the opportunity to help plan and facilitate several retreats and workshops that my friend Sharon, a retired therapist, has organized. My focus was primarily on providing visual-art activities for these events, but during the planning stages Sharon had me listen to a number of guided meditations. Some of them I listened to multiple times, and, a bit skeptical though I was–I mean, could just hearing a guided meditation really have any effect on a person?–I found that I really enjoyed visualizing standing in a flowing river or preparing to go through a doorway. I liked creating these visions, refining, changing, embellishing the places I was seeing with my mind’s eye, and I overcame my skepticism and started to see that there was something very beneficial about the experience. I always felt more creative after these exercises.
So, I wondered, who writes these guided meditations? What are the necessary qualifications for the job? If someone’s life can be altered even a little bit by having them listen receptively to words that someone else has written, then the writer holds a bit of power over his listeners, and would hopefully bear in mind the potential effect of his words on them. I’m imagining a classified ad in the newspaper with the heading “Guided Meditation Writer,” that reads: “Writer of guided meditations needed by October 1st, must have cell phone, reliable vehicle, access to email; benign intentions a plus.”
Which brings me to today’s assemblage of words, which sounds like a guided meditation:
A rug curls up at the edges.
Clinging to the rug like soapy water,
Puddles of light scatter between the large nails.
Take off your shoes.
Fall into a freely-chosen puddle,
Your safety zone.
A word of caution:
If your floor is old, attempt no improvements.
Dive into fuzzy frayed linen.
Plunge into manholes.
So another character, nameless as of yet, is emerging in this still nearly amorphous story I want to tell, and he/she is the writer of strange guided meditations. Which leaves me to ponder: who is his intended audience, and what effect is he aiming for? How is he trying to change his listeners’ lives? Are his intentions benign?