Ok so have you ever read a line or a passage and it really moved you, more than the actual words on the page should have? I don’t know about you but when this happens it usually takes me by surprise. You are reading, immersed in the story, there is often an underlying tension that might be building and then you read this one sentence and wam you are hit with the emotion or the insight, like a damn was building up behind the words Buhner would say. That emotion or that deeper meaning was there under the surface, threaded along with the words and then all of a sudden it is on the surface. It’s pretty magical how that happens really. I’ve stopped and really analysed the words but it’s something underneath them that’s doing it.
ENSOULING LANGUAGE by Stephen H Buhner steps into this realm of writing and leads us through how it works and how any writing or art that is alive is a product of this process either consciously or unconsciously/intuitively.
Here are some samples from the book, they use writing but the same principles apply with other forms of art.
What he’s talking about in this snippet is the ability to write something while concurrently describing how it looks in the world but also how it feels in the world. And to do that as a writer you need to be in the feeling and the seeing of what you are writing about, in order to to express it. And when you are in that state it forms a kinesthetic dimension.
“Our capacity for nonphysically touching of the world opens up to us a different dimension of things beyond height, width and depth. A feeling dimension. And this feeling dimension of things will lead, if followed with focus and diligence, very deeply into the meaning of things in the world. Artists take this natural human capacity and go much further with it than most do; they do it as a profession. They begin to follow the touch of meaning upon them, follow their sensate perceptions of a golden thread, into the depths of the thing itself, into the meaning that underlie its surface form, its image.They then work to capture that in language.” ( or in music or photography or painting…)
Here’s another one about what happens when you write from this combined state of visually feeling it:
“A visual description then, in the writer’s hands, becomes infused with feeling. Simply by reading the visual description you have written, the reader feels the secret kinesis of the thing being described. Visual sensing, inside the writer ( and subsequently inside the writing), has taken on kinesthetic dimensions. And simultaneously, feeling has taken on a visual dimension. Simply by reading a line filled with feeling, a visual image or series of images unfolds within the reader.”
Buhner goes on to lead us through many other elements what layer into this process and consequently take us deeper and deeper into the process of enlivening our expression.
Anyway check out ENSOULING LANGUAGE it’s a pretty impressive read.