Let's Help Each Other Out!

This is a place for creative writing teachers to share idea to be come better teachers.

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Going Mystical on Ya'

I work at a state institution, and in the US we have separation of church and state. I like that. Putting church and state together creates one institution with too much power, a theocracy as in Iran.

Still, no question there is a spiritual dimension to creative writing. There is a spritiual dimension to everything, even feeding the cat.

Pirsig, the other of Zen and the Art of Motorcyle Maintenance, seemed to argue, if I remember right, that striving for quality, the good, is a striving for God.  Attempting to do anything the best you can is a spiritual exercise.  So work on that poem. Work on that story. Strive toward greatness. It's a spiritual thing. You may be carrying on a converstation with energies above the human, with the ground of being, the mysterium--whatever you wish to call it.  In indirect ways I try to imply that striving for good work is good for them, my students, without bringing in too much of the spiritual stuff.

I don't see writing as a career primarily, or as a means to make money, although I'm glad to make money.  I encourage my students to write in order to understand themselves better, to explore their emotions, and when they share their work with others, they could be helping others and doing spiritual work.

I see writing as a calling.  How many of your students do you see called to it?  More than we might know. Even a student not planning to publish may continue to write and put out good energy into the universe by that writing. The student can continue to develop and become a better person through the practice of writing.


  1. So here is my take on the latest blog: Thank you Chuck, not only is it a spiritual connection, we become a chanel for something outside ourselves, we are in a sense, vessels for the "mysterious muse" to transmit through. a student taking creative writing has already made this discovery, in my opinion, and is ready to manifest that concept. It becomes something that one cannot, not do; in order to be happy, even content, it becomes an imperative, a necessary part of ones interaction with life. If we are creators, then we must creat, or the restless spirit will reign chaos and supreme dominion over our souls. That's my take at least -- Connie L. Williams"

  2. Connie Williams wrote the above, not me.