We are living in a time of amazing opportunities and great discomfort. As our pace of life slows and we wear through the distractions within our own homes, there is a great deal of our deeper life that is bubbling up to the surface. There are the places of mystery and wound which we have kept hidden away, which are now seeking to emerge into light to find love and compassion. There are interesting ideas and possibilities which we have not had time to consider. There are the life stories – ours or those of people we love, which have never been told.
One response to this upwelling is to write the letters we have always intended to write. These come in several forms.
There are letters from and to our earlier selves. This opens the flow of all that is arising from the past that needs our attention. We have been living such busy lives, rarely free to listen to our deepest desires and true needs. There may be old wounds and limiting thought habits that form barriers to finding joy in our lives. There may be wonderful energizing dreams and latent talents that want to surface and become part of our lives. Our present compassionate self can bring healing to the wounds and fears of the young ones within us lovingly listening to their words. Those youngsters, in return can give us the gift of imagination, creativity and playfulness that opens new doors for our future.
There are letters from and to our future selves. These open us to the resource of wisdom and perspective from one who has passed through this immediate crisis and emerged into a new way of living. Imagine a future self who knows everything about you and is delighted to help you find the most fulfilling path for your life. Letters from a future self can show us current strengths and skills to develop that can move us toward this future image of confidence and peace. To imagine that there is one who can look back at all of this as an important adventure that opened our life to new possibilities can lift us out of our feelings of isolation and limitation.
Then there are the letters you have always meant to write to other people in your life. These open us to share the important things that we do not want to leave unsaid in times of uncertainty. Their function is not to thrash or punish or push others ways. Instead these are letters from our highest and most compassionate being that create new connections with others. They are the admission that we have not understood one another as deeply as we want to. They ask to hear the inside story of the lives of those who we love, even as we share our inner story with them.
One of the wonderful things about letters is that they allow us time and freedom. We can let things pour out onto the page and decide what is for our eyes only and what is meant for others. As we write, things come to light that we did not know were in our heart and mind.
Those who receive our letters have the ability to digest them at their own pace. There is no immediate response needed as our words and images flow to them. They have time to consider what they are ready to share with us and then write their own letter, or decide that they need to do some writing to themselves first.
I have begun this process, writing to one of the most important people in my life, my sister. As other people come to mind, I will be writing to them. In the meantime, I am having fun listening to the exuberance of a very young self who thinks that the best response to all of this is to go outside to dance, spin and sing.