“A problem cannot be solved with the same level of awareness that created it”
– Albert Einstein
We often have an idea of the direction our story is going, and sometimes we discover that, in fact, it does head in that direction, but not in the way we had anticipated. To some degree, we are our hero’s journey. This is part of what makes this process so thrilling and meaningful, and also makes it feel so fraught with the potential for ‘failure’. On some level, we are exploring our own life, and making ‘supposed’ meaning out of what we discover. The urgent need that initially roused us to write our story seems to come up for review, and we are invited to question all of our beliefs.
Fears arise, and our challenge is to remain curious, while not making meaning out of these fears, as we may have in the past. We understand, in some fundamental way, that what we had made meaning of was not the whole truth. It did not include the possibility for something greater, for something perhaps beyond our imagination. It did not include grace. This is the magic of story. Story structure is a wonder of the universe. As evolving creatures, this power eternally draws us in. A working relationship to story actually has the effect of stretching our imaginations, inviting us to explore areas that are actually beyond what we thought we knew.
It is one thing to talk about this process, but quite another to stand in its power. We can talk about the power of a tsunami, but being there is a different experience. The willingness to shepherd our hero through the crucible of surrender and awakening, with the clear brave eyes of a curious writer usually involves just a little more bravery than we currently possess. It does seem almost impossible at times, doesn’t it? In fact, I believe it is. I can’t do it. And the moment I realize this, everything shifts and I discover that I am merely a channel. If it was up to me, I would continue to circle the airport of my neurosis. It is my higher self that steers the ship.
All that I need is within. My job is simply to inquire.