I am putting in this funny little post because I have some dear friends who are really curious about automatic writing. I thought it would be helpful for them to get the same inner help that I received, if I could explain it a little. I arrived at automatic writing when I was about thirty two and in a major crisis of my life. At this period I seemed to go into emotional overload every time there was a bit of pressure and I would blow, a bit like letting the monster out of the bag. It seemed like I had reached a threshold and anything could tip me over. I was unhappy and scared of myself. I even thought I was going mad, because I couldn’t control myself. My imaginings became so real I was sort of hallucinating. I probably could have done with a therapist, but I wanted to believe I could fix myself.
At the same the time, I was taking classes in dream workshops, as my dreams were really vivid and I wanted to discover their meanings. The way we were taught, was to imagine yourself as every part of the dream, every person, to take on the persona of each character and to act out the part. We were also taught to find out where that dream person resided in your body eg. head, heart, tummy, bowel… I learnt a lot about myself by allowing myself to act out these different entities within me and I did it through writing once the workshops were over and I had no partner to act out to.
In the meantime, my feeling of crisis was growing and I was running to religion, to yoga, to anything and anyone who seemed to have an answer for my out of controlness. But I think it was the dream workshop writing that instigated the automatic writing that would help me. One day, another out of control day, I just started to write to myself. I started by pretending I was really wise, that I was a magician, like Gandalf in Lord of the Rings. I was very calm and I felt all knowing and deeply beautiful. I wrote to myself, what’s the matter, Shona Lee. And I responded quickly, blurting out my problem. And my Gandalf character gently wrote, how old are you Shona Lee, and I wrote fast, three, I am three and really really sad and I am scared. And my Gandalf character asked me where my three year old lived in Shona, and she told me, in her stomach where all the emotions were churning. My wise self asked the child where the problem had originated from and the child explained the drama that had hurt her at that age, that she had closed off inside herself. When I was writing, I was writing without judgement, and I didn’t think about what I was saying, just letting it all go, whatever it was. My writing also became really childish, I was talking the language of a child and my writing was big an open – I also felt very connected to the time I was writing about, so felt really emotional. I know I could have stopped at any moment, I still had an awareness, after all I was acting, so I felt safe. The lovely thing was, that after I had confessed the ‘terrible’ thing that had happened to me (in the eyes of my child) my wise self was so kind and lovely and explained things as they truly were, opening my eyes to the injustice, that it reflected the perpetrator, not me. The shame was not mine. My wise person cuddled me and we were able to look inside the parcel I had left behind in a dark room of my stomach, that had left me scared for my life, growing larger and larger as it wanted to come out, as it became too heavy to carry. Once I was able to see it for what it was, the relief was enormous and I could see how it reflected in my adult life. Every time a similar situation came up, for example, rejection, or being left out, the child in the adult reacted, thrashing out, tantrumming or sulking or yelling and the feeling was over the top. Dear little hurt child. And there are so many hurt children in our selves, creating blockages, stopping the flow to our lives, making us react strangely to all the social dramas of life, even attracting ourselves to the same situation time and again. After that session of writing and all the sessions that followed I was always careful to close down the connection to that past. I would say, thank you to my wise one and thank you to my child for opening the door, and then I would say good bye. I think this part is important so that you don’t keep that subconscious door open. We did this in our dream workshops also and also when we meditated. Its a bit like coming back to our full consciousness.
After that first time, and my joy at discovering peace and seeing a situation for what it truly was, I found I had many, many sessions unravelling many blocks from that period of time. I hardly do it now, as the child is now mostly joyful, but when I am extremely hurt or don’t understand my reaction or behaviour, I write to myself and the answer comes from my wise self.
Recently I read a book called Eat, Love, Pray by Elizabeth Gilbert and I was astonished to find she also did automatic writing, creating a line of communication with her spiritual wisdom. I never really shared my experiences with automatic writing before as I thought I had created a bit of homespun help that was just my peculiarity. However, it seems it is a way to unblock parts in our lives going backwards, and it really does work.