For those of you who don’t know, in addition to writing, I teach meditation. So in honor of the letter M, I came up with a meditation/visualization exercise for writers, called Meet Your Muse.
In Ancient Greece, the muses were goddesses of poetry, literature, sciences and the arts. Considered responsible for inspiration, they were sought out. In this article, I have written a meditation on how to meet your archetypal muse. It’s a way for your mind to inspire and assist you in your creative pursuits.
However this muse appears will be very specific to you. It should be something that makes you feel good, a positive thing. Remember how as a child, you or someone you knew, had an imaginary friend. This muse is designed to be a writer’s imaginary friend that you access only through meditation. (i.e., if you take your muse out to dinner and converse with him or her in a restaurant, you might seem slightly more than eccentric, if you know what I mean!)
So, this article is going to explain how to do the meditation so you can try this yourself. Later, if people are interested, I may script it out and even include a recording. If you would like one, please comment below, or send an email to lisa_voisin at hotmail dot com with ‘Meditation’ in the subject line.
For this meditation, make sure you are sitting somewhere comfortable where you won’t be disturbed. Making space for ourselves in our busy lives is sometimes the hardest part of meditation itself. That, and quieting the mind. To assist with the latter, this meditation includes a visualization exercise that should give it something to do.
Meditation: Meet Your Muse
So, first, sit back and get yourself comfortable, however that is for you.
Next, take a few deep breaths, just focusing on your breath. Inhale and exhale a few times. Try to focus on inhaling relaxation, or peace, and exhaling any tension or uncertainty. Do this a few times.
If you find yourself losing focus, be patient with yourself. This takes practice, so simply refocus on inhaling and exhaling.
Once you’ve done this, it’s good to close your eyes. [Of course, while you’re reading this, you can’t close your eyes (which is why I’ll offer a recording).]
With your eyes closed, I want to to visualize yourself relaxing. Starting with the head, feel that relaxation pouring into you like warm sunlight streaming in through the top of your head, through your skull, your brain, your forehead, and all the way through your face… your nose, mouth, jaw muscles, relax them all. Unclench your teeth if they are tight. Breathe into any areas of tension, and focus on actively releasing it with your exhale.
Now, feel that warm relaxation through your neck and shoulders, let go of any tension. Then down through the torso and back. if you have any tense areas, breathe into them, and actively let them go. Just let that feeling of relaxation flow through your chest, your back–between your shoulder blades, your stomach, abdomen, middle and lower back, right down to your sit bones. Breathing and releasing any tension, so that you can relax. If any worries, thoughts or concerns crop up, juet let them go. If you need to remember them, they will still be there when you are finished.
Now, let that relaxation seep into your arms, just allow it to seep right down your arms… all the way down your elbows, your forearms, your hands and then your fingers. Let them all relax. And then your legs, feel it in your thighs, then your knees. Release any tension in your calves, your ankles, right into your feet. Feel your feet comfortably on the ground, rooting you.
Imagine there are roots growing from the base of your feet. Not the small roots your see in weeds, but the huge expansive roots of a great tree, like an oak. See or imagine those roots going right into the earth, connecting you to the earth.
Just take a few more deep breaths here and just allow yourself to relax and revel in this comfortable feeling.
Now, you are going to visualize a beautiful place in nature in the middle of a beautiful forest. You are sitting beside a small pond. Sunlight streams through the trees and glimmers off the water. You can hear the sounds of this wonderful place… birds are singing. A gentle breeze whispers through the leaves. It is here that you will meet your muse.
Focus on the light sparkling off the water, it grows brighter, more brilliant, until you begin to see the outline of someone coming toward you from the light, as though he or she were walking on the water, or emerging from it. For this is a magical being, it is connected to your creative self.
And now, meet your muse. This magical being is filled with inspiration for you. As this being comes closer, I want you to greet your muse. See what your muse has to say. Ask him or her any questions. Take a few moments to do this….
Now, ask your muse what to work on next. If you are writing a story, ask where you need to go with it. If you don’t know where to start, ask the muse that. Your muse is here to help you, so relax and ask.
In response, your muse presents a scroll. It’s a magical scroll. So you open it, and on the scroll is a picture, or words, you may hear your muse explain what is on the scroll. You may even have a feeling of what to do next, where to go with your story, like an instinct of something new to try with your project… whatever it is you’re working on.
Receive this scroll, and spend a few moments here to ask your muse for any clarifications.
When you are done, thank your muse and say goodbye, knowing you can come back here at any time to communicate with your muse.
Now, watch as the light brightens again and the muse returns to the light over the pond.
Breathing deeply, remember what you have learned from your muse. And now, tune to your body. Take a few deep breaths and feel your feet rooted in the earth. Wiggle your toes and wiggle your fingers. And when you feel ready open your eyes.
I would love your feedback if you try this. Please let me know how it works for you. And, again, if you’d like a recording, please send me your contact info: lisa_voisin at hotmail dot com, AND to be sure I get it, please leave a comment below.