(I recently taught a writing workshop at Adams State University entitled Guts, Ground and Gaia: Writing From the Body. I’m curious to see if there is resonance out there with these ideas, or if there’s any interest in taking this workshop.)
Writing deeply from the body not only gives power and resonance to our writing, but more importantly it connects us to our visceral experience, the ground upon which we stand, and the planet that supports us.
Writing from the body takes on special importance in our digital age because many predict that the body will soon be declared obsolete. The fool’s gold of technology, shimmering and glinting in the shallows, seduces us away from our physical experience. We risk being exiled from our bodies, estranged and disembodied.
The repercussions of disembodiment ripple wide. Art, music, and theater have already been eviscerated from many public schools. So has physical education. Are the humanities next? If we lose our connection to our bodies, how easy will it be to lose our connection to place, and to planet? Will the collective wisdom of our bodies disappear like the vanishing song birds, the pollinating bees, the long-tusked elephant, the wide-eyed whale? Will the body be declared obsolete?
These are some of the ideas and issues I’ve been exploring for quite some time in my writing, my art, and in my life. I plan to post more excerpts from my Aikido memoir manuscript that explore embodiment, and I welcome comments about these ideas. What does embodied writing feel like, sound like, look like, to you?