As early as five hundred years ago and as late as a thousand or more years ago, the mystics we know of and whose writing survived lived special lives, for sure. Most of them were never noted as having spouses, children, or other obligations.
Many were secluded in monasteries or something similar. For sure, they did not have today’s version of nine-to-five jobs but relied on a religious organization or similar group for mutual support, each taking part in daily activities. In other words, they had time to pause, connect spiritually, and simply commune with God in whatever way they believed. And they had the time to do this constantly.
Running Around Faster Than a Merry-Go-Round
Today, things are quite different. Most people today are running around faster than a merry-go-round at a child’s amusement park. Not only do they have financial obligations, but they are singularly responsible for their own monetary affairs.
Stay-at-home moms and dads do not indeed stay at home anymore, but are shuffling obligations on a calendar whose days have very little space left for other things. Fast food is popular because people have to eat fast in order to fit everything into their busy days.
Rarely is family mealtime an event, with family members gathering at the end of the day to share nourishment and conversation. Instead, food has become a quick grab between teenagers’ activities, nightly meetings, household chores, schoolwork, and workloads too heavy to leave at the office. Often family members are like ships that pass in the night, too involved in their own path to notice one another.
Mystics: Those Who Pause, Reflect, Listen, and Connect Spiritually
It’s no wonder, then, that mysticism has become a history lesson of those who went before us. Most people today cannot relate to it at all, not even when it is described as an inner spiritual instinct.
For this reason, I prefer to call those who do pause and reflect, listen, and connect spiritually (and keep as their main focus at all times that special inner Divinity innate to us all) Modern Mystics. Each of us still must maintain our family obligations as best we can because sequestering ourselves from the outside world is inconvenient at best and, really, all but impossible.
The world is what it is, and unlike for the mystics of old, conversation today is usually a quick click on a cell phone and events of the world are all but instantaneously shoved at us through the media and Internet. And frankly, if we don’t work or earn money somewhere, it is going to be quite hard to find that roof over our heads and to put food on the table. Therefore, we have to learn to be Modern Mystics in spite of the pace of life around us, incorporating our Divine connection into the everyday tasks of living in a world too busy to pause.
Divinely Connected While Washing Dishes, Walking, Running, or House Cleaning
Did you realize that you can be quite Divinely connected when you wash dishes? Are you aware that meditation can be done when walking or running? Or gardening? Or cleaning a house? When you hold your child in your lap, or read a bedtime story, or simply listen with your heart, are you able to not only know the presence of God, but to actualize this connection in these everyday events? To look deeply into someone’s eyes when listening with your heart is a way of becoming a Modern Mystic.
Go beyond your five senses when in a garden, beside a lake or ocean, or even in the presence of woods or fields in order to listen with your heart, discovering that wonderful Divinity present in all things. In other words, Modern Mystics find a way to allow that inner, Divine connection to be active in all they do.
Letting Your Spirit Meander in Writing
What Modern Mystics can choose to have in common with mystics of old may come through writing. Even though not everyone can be a poet, an essayist, or even produce works of consumer value, each of us is able to pick up pen and paper to allow the meanderings of our hearts and spirits to flow unimpeded through our written words.
Something about seeing these types of spiritual meanderings allows our inner spiritual experience to deepen and facilitates the process of Spirit speaking with us in a new way—one we can easily read. It also makes us fully aware of our spiritual connections, for it literally moves God’s love, presence, and grace into the analytical part of our brain. From there, it journeys aware through our heart right into our actions; in other words, it’s life-enhancing. We heal, we recover, we re-connect, and we grow.
When writing in this fashion, the words do not have to all form sentences. Instead, they can be unsystematic, placed in random fashion anywhere on the paper you desire, in any way you like. The words can come fast as you scribble them out, or they can come slowly, trickling from your inner spirit like molasses dripping out of a crockery jug.
Spelling does not count. Punctuation is what you want it to be, indicating the pauses and the ends of thoughts, as well as the exclamations or questions as you need them to be. No teacher has the right to correct anything you write when writing for spiritual reasons. In fact, I recommend not showing this inner work to anyone at all. After all, it’s your soul that wishes to be heard, for you alone. There is no right or wrong in this exercise. It should be done sincerely and freely, with no internal editor.
Spirit Is Trying To Write For You, As You, With You
Approach this form of writing with an open mind, with no preconceived ideas of perfection, and with an attitude that it will happen just as you need it to happen. Remember, you are not trying to write something; the Spiritual is trying to write for you, as you, with you.
Start with one word, a word that lingers in your emotional realms instead of in your rationality. Write this word anywhere on the paper you wish it to be. Move it if you need to. Make it in the color you wish. Change your mind and make it another color. Write it as many times as you want to, or just write part of the word. Write it upside down. Write it in mirror image. Draw on the word. Enhance the word.
Remember, just connecting to your own word as creatively as you wish will create an important dynamic for you to follow. Allow this word full expression; believe me when I say that this word will indeed speak to you, move you, and guide you as you let it.
What emotions does it bring up? What questions? Why did this word appear? What is it about this word that is loving? What is this word connected to? How does this word make you feel? Or did your feelings make this word appear? Or did you feel like it was whispered to you from something holy?
If this word speaks to you in some of these ways, or in different ways, then create another word linked to this word through the present movement of your heart and mind. Put this new word, phrase, or sentence (or perhaps paragraph or paragraphs) onto your paper any way you wish.
Let Spirit Flow: Do Not Edit Spirit
Use your computer if you need to. Don’t edit at this point. Remember, this is a process, not a specific event. Let this dynamic begin to flow anyhow it needs to flow. It’s not something you’re doing; instead think of it as something that you’re participating in, something that you’re tapping into, or something that you are allowing to happen.
It’s entirely possible that the flow will be like the Mississippi River. If so, then let that happen. It’s also possible that your flow will be like a small stream of water moving down a slight incline, twisting and turning over leaves, sticks, and rocks as it makes a tiny muddy trail through the dirt. Both experiences are great. Perfect, actually. Don’t judge. Just let it come, as it needs to come.
If you get the urge to draw, then do so. If you get the urge to cut out specific pictures from magazines, then do so. If the need to pray comes, then for heaven’s sake do that. The point is to let yourself express in some form that you can return to later in order to witness your own progress.
Please be aware that this is not a process about someone else. This little exercise should not be a way to put down a classmate, to rage at your boss, or to complain about anything. That thwarts the purpose. This experience is not about sexuality either, not about specific body urges, and not about addictions of any kind.
If you find that is what’s expressing itself onto the paper, then it is not your soul and spirit that are speaking to you, but your ego through your psychology. It’s best to play those specifics out with professional counselors or the like.
The Divine Connection Happens with Divine Timing
Realization of a Divine connection through pen and paper may or may not happen all at once. Also, it may not happen exactly way you expect it to happen. But, believe me, if you surrender to becoming a Modern Mystic, then that particular intention will orchestrate a path of connection wider, deeper, and far beyond anything you could ever imagine. And it will happen in the way that utilizes your specific talents, pulls unneeded issues out of your psychological flower garden, and allows your spirit to bloom passionately.
After all, it is written in sacred texts that men and women were all created in the image of God. We were created through love, to recognize our true essence as loving, and to share this loving grace through our specific talents. Why would we be here, living and present, after all, with a Divine connection, if we were not supposed to be aware of our Divine connection?
Mysticism is not limited to just the experiences of ancients who were called to this. As Modern Mystics, each of us has an underutilized connection to God, unique to the individual. Be open to it. Be willing to accept it. And most of all, be appreciative and grateful for your own Divine connection. The heart always remembers.
Reprinted with permission. ©2015 by Patricia M. Fievet.
Published by Cloverhurst Publications.
Making of a Mystic: Writing as a Form of Spiritual Emergence
by Paddy Fievet, PhD.
About the Author
PADDY FIEVET loves the soul-enhancing connection that comes from writing. Making of a Mystic is her second book; her first, When Life Cried Out, was also published in 2014. She still utilizes the methods described in this book, for they are a foremost way of connecting to God’s loving Spirit on a daily basis. They are also for her a method of cultivating silence and allowing Spirit to move and guide her in whatever she does—a prayer through pen and paper. Currently, Paddy enjoys speaking to groups, telling meaningful stories, facilitating writing groups, and assisting others in discovering their own specific versions of life as a Sacred Story. Visit Paddy Fievet online at www.paddyfievet.com.