Several people who had a mark on who I am journeyed on to summerland this week. There was Maurice Sendak (Where the Wild Things Are), Jean Craighead George (Julie of the Wolves), Walter Wink (peacemaker), Donna Summers (a singer I danced to in high school and college), and my first creative writing instructor Nettie Morse.
Nettie taught a Sunday afternoon journaling class at Sage Sisters. She was animate that all people are creative. She felt many people thought they had to have a painting hanging in a museum or be listed on the NY Times Best Sellers to be creative. As she explained it each week, creativity comes in all shapes and forms. One could be creative by trying out a new recipe, planting a vegetable garden or solving a problem at work that danced around the office politics. It was showing up daily and using your “God-given” talents to help humanity that was being creative.
Nettie was also a firm believer in journaling. She came from the Julia Cameron camp with her own spin. She believed that journals were actually journalogues for the soul. Nettie felt they were comparable to travelogues. Instead of describing your vacation trip to Europe or in the case of Che Guevara’s a trip down the west coast North and South Americas (The Motorcycle Diaries), a journalogue the writer describes their soul’s experience on the road of life. A journaloges intent is to act as a GPS devise and help monitor where your soul is.
What I have learned from her, journalogues are a self reflective or contemplative process. They are a safe place to exam what is really going on in my life. They are a place to ask tough questions of myself: why haven't I finished.... or why did I sound like my mother yelling at my son... or a place I can dump everything that is on my mind that I would never say out loud. And, they are a place where I can begin again allowing Motherfather Spirit to take charge again. They are a place to discover new possibilities in my life - often leading me down a path that is true to my soul's song.
Nettie Journal Activities
The God’s Message through the Red Pen.Journal or blank pages
Be in a quiet space and ground yourself. Using the blue pen begin writing all your problems or unsolved issues onto the page. Next, pick up the red pen and listen to your inner voice tell you how you should solve this. Begin a dialogue between the blue pen personality and the red pen personality.
Name your Different VoicesNettie had us name the different characters within us: Doubting Susie, Wild Annie, Scared Lucy. She would have us write out dialogues with these characters.
Eg: Doubting Susie: I don’t think you should do this, you aren’t going to make it.
Myself: And why do you think that way?
Doubting Susie: Because, you have heard what people think.
Myself: How do people think?