Tuesday, August 3, 2010

Blogging as Practice

Instead of just responding in the comments section, I thought I would write a little about this whole blogging thing for me, as it has been lately.

I know I've been picking a bone with the separateness narratives in my life lately. In many ways, it is a response to "things falling apart," as Pema Chodron would say. What's falling apart, you might ask? Good question. What is there to fall apart?

So, part of blogging for me lately has been to present what's coming up for me, while also watching how I am experiencing the act of writing it itself. There is some editing going on, but not as much as I usually do.

In the post I wrote yesterday, I actually felt the shifting that occurred between talking about myself and making more generalized observations. I think sometimes this is the natural, appropriate shift - an offering to those in the world who are reading what I have written. Other times, such shifts are mostly about skipping over something in my own life that I'm either not sure how to write about, or am not ready to write about.

Putting writing like this into the world isn't always easy. I can feel the resistance, the desire to withhold certain intimate, messy details or observations, and also the desire to offer something useful or at least interesting to my readers.
When I can let go of all of this, and just write and edit as is called for, the post that appears tends to do it's work. People comment. Or not. But there's a certain flow to it all which I can't quite explain.

When clinging is present, and I'm trying to "do something" or not talk about certain things, then other dynamics occur. Sometimes dead silence. Sometimes a lot of comments with mixed responses. People poking at the edges I didn't want to speak about.

Regardless of clinging or not clinging, polished or sloppy, presenting a post on a regular basis is a practice in just showing up. It helps reinforce the same thing in my daily life. Doing it here help me do it at work. Or at the zen center. Or with my family. Or while standing on the bus stop.

Writing has always came easily for me. Before learning yoga, zazen, kinhin, and chanting, writing was often the one activity I could turn to for grounding, releasing, reflecting, and burning through. So this blog is an attempt to bring all of these activities together, as well as others - it's a practice in breaking down divisions, even though sometimes I end creating or enhancing them.


Unknown said...

hi nathan! i featured you on my blog here: http://bookbirdwrites.blogspot.com/2010/08/twelve-buddhist-blogs-worth-getting-out.html

Nathan said...

Thanks much.