Friday, September 19, 2014


How Writing and Transcending Differ
In an earlier posting called “Reflective Writing and the Experience of Transcending,” I talked about some similarities between writing and transcending, namely that both processes begin with an inward turn of awareness, both processes allow the experience of moving to deeper levels of thought, and both processes result in more creative expression. In my conclusion to that posting, however, I pointed out that the parallel shouldn't be drawn too tightly.

Writing is an avenue for expressing our creativity, our imagination, even our logic. It does not, however, by itself, create enlightenment. To create enlightenment, an individual must be able to transcend the thinking process, to go beyond the level of the intellect and experience pure consciousness, the state of Transcendental Consciousness. Writing, by its own nature, must remain on the level of the intellect if a person is to produce words on paper or on a screen.

This major difference between writing and transcending leads us to consider what is the value of writing on the path to enlightenment. I’m using the term enlightenment here as defined by Maharishi's Science of Consciousness–enlightenment means to possess the totality of pure consciousness and to be at home with all the laws of nature. When we practice the Transcendental Meditation® technique and experience pure consciousness, our awareness brings that experience of pure consciousness or creative intelligence back to the surface level of our awareness on the outward stroke. If we have this experience twice a day every day, each time we bring more of that pure consciousness to the surface level of our awareness and we have more creative intelligence to operate with, whether we are writing, playing music, or practicing accounting.

In fact, Maharishi explains in his commentary on the Bhagavad Gita[1] that we can stabilize that increased level of creative intelligence and consciousness by performing action that is life-supporting and hastens evolution. Writing is just such a purposeful activity. To my mind, what makes writing particularly enjoyable is that it does have those parallels with transcending discussed earlier. We write and we are reminded of that inward and outward stroke of meditation, but we also are learning or practicing the craft of writing.

So,we practice the Transcendental Meditation technique to transcend and experience pure consciousness, and then we can write and stabilize that new influx of total intelligence that meditating has produced. We can grow toward enlightenment, and we can become good writers along the way.

Image: © Hxdylzj | - Lotus Flower Photo

[1] See Chapter III, Verse 19 for a discussion of stabilizing Transcendental Consciousness through activity in daily life in Maharishi Mahesh Yogi. Bhagavad Gita: A New Translation and Commentary, Chapters 1-6. Fairfield, IA: MIU Press, 1976 (1967), p. 155. 


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