- Posted September 6, 2013 by
This iReport is part of an assignment:
The written word: Your personal essays
- The brat prima donna, the Good Guy and the Resilience of the Filipino People Part II
- The brat prima donna, the Good Guy and the Resilience of the Filipino People Part I
- Insensitivity, arrogance and an act unworthy of being a president Part II
- Insensitivity, arrogance and an act unworthy of being a president Part I
- An Open Letter to President Vladimir Putin Part II
The Path and Necessity of Writing
In the same vein, we can also say with certainty that the apathetic and pessimistic voices that trying to stop and silence us to write can only be subdued and be defeated, if we ourselves will begin to hold the pen and commence to write.
It is on this great sense that Voltaire is correct when he stated that to “hold the pen is to be in a state of war.”
In doing so, we will give justice to Franz Kafka’s admonition:
“Don't bend; don't water it down; don't try to make it logical; don't edit your own soul according to the fashion. Rather, follow your most intense obsessions mercilessly.”
I concur with the Meg Manzano (“The write path”, PDI, August 24th) that the task of “assembling words to orchestrate an idea and momentarily hold a reader captive to one’s thoughts is quite daunting…”
However, I certainly believe that we humans write not simply to impress, but more importantly to express. The former is merely to persuade, while the latter’s aim is to convince and to enlighten.
Man’s duty is to discover the truth and to highlight the natural beauty of virtue base on our material human condition.
Part and parcel of discovering the truth is by writing about it.
As Graham Green told us “writing is a form of therapy”. Indeed, I often “wonder how all those who do not write, compose or paint can manage to escape the madness, melancholia, the panic and fear which is inherent in a human situation.”
There is no iota of doubt that writing is a human necessity!
It is my contention that we have no choice but to write. It is on this inescapable sense that writing is also a curse or a disease (call it what you will)!
Writing is both a gift and a curse, and as I already noted; it is also a disease. It is my contention that such is the fact by virtue of the undeniable truth that the only thing that can make one at ease is only when one is writing or precisely the very moment when said individual lose oneself in the act and process of writing his or her thoughts!
The only cure or the sole antidote for the “itch” is for us to keep on scratching it! We have no choice and there is nothing we can do about it, because we are constituted as such!
To write is to be human and to be truly human is to write as truly and as completely as possible with regard to the overall human condition!
Writing is also a gift, by virtue of that fact that the said process or exercise heals our deepest wounds, calm our nerves and regularly restore our sanity.
Nonetheless, I also admit the indisputable fact that, writing is also a curse, because no matter how many times one writes or no matter how often one scribble one’s thoughts and ideas; the need, the hunger and the burning desire to write and to express oneself is always there.
The urge to write never goes away, there’s no dissipation, no let up, for the thirst for words and the will to express --- remains, no matter what!
Yes, I concur with Manzano’s words that:
“People will tell you that writing is commonplace and that if it possesses any incredible substance, it is reserved for professors, scholars, and literature students. Let me tell you differently. Get lost in the whimsical swirls and sways of words, marry rhyme and reason with your phrases. Re-imagine the believed nature of a story and how, if it isn’t only good for bedtime, then it’s too complicated to bother with.
“Fall in love with writing and revel in your ability to tell a story that can make others feel, that can disturb their previously still surfaces and provoke their curiosities. Spur their creativity by allowing them entrance to your own mind, and let them see a woman the way you’d see her (do her brown eyes startle you or perhaps leave you with coupled breaths?), offer them careful adjectives that may aid them to grasp her flesh the way you celebrate it.
“Create a world, allow others to briefly take residence as their eyes scan your work, and finally, leave them heavily compelled to build one of their own.”
It is beyond dispute that in the process of writing and putting into paper our ideas and feelings, we lose ourselves; yet it is also undeniable that it is also by scribbling our thoughts and it is only through writing that we find ourselves, realize our existence and internalize the true meaning of our lives.
“We write to taste life twice, in the moment and in retrospect”, hence Anais Nin is absolutely correct in reminding us.
Writing gives us our identity and concretizes our autonomy. Needless to state, the exercise and process of writing gives our lives its meaning and significance and more importantly, it consequently improves and completes our humanity, in the final analysis!
Jose Mario Dolor De Vega
College of Arts and Letters
Polytechnic University of the Philippines