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?

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§ 2 Responses to Puddles of Light

  • Joanne Thomas says:

    I am guessing that a guided-meditation writer would be describing a ‘scene’ that he/she herself would imagine and wish to travel on.
    If I were asked to write one, I would not be thinking what the listener would need to hear, but what I would want to hear.
    What may have meaning for myself, may likely have meaning to others.

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