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Musings on the Muse

by Lisa Avnet

A few words about the Muse to clarify the concept.  Our "Muse" is an inner force residing in our subconscious mind.  It's that wellspring of creativity, imagination, and intuition which informs our unique writer's voice.  The Muse resides in the entire field of your subconscious mind - and thus, in hypnosis may assume many forms - it may be formless, or may appear in your Mind’s Eye as a ball of light, a human, an animal, or plant – however it appears is just right for you.  Many creatives enjoy  naming their Muse to enhance their relationship with it. Connection with this force is like connecting to a river of images, feelings and if you’re a writer, words. Here at the Haven, we court the Muse and the inspiration that comes with the connection.  I offer a hypnosis session which will connect you to your current inner Muse to writers on retreat here as well as those who want to come to the office just for this purpose.   

A view of our extensive gardens here at the Haven, providing much inspiration!

Why hypnosis?   Our minds are way more open to the Muse, to the flow of images, words, and ideas when we’re in a non-ordinary state of consciousness such as hypnotic trance.  What I love about hypnotic trance: it’s a natural human state experienced every day, that you can learn to access yourself with practice once you've experienced a professional session. 

Your brainwaves in hypnotic trance are similar to the brain waves seen in meditation and prayer. All three practices help you to access Deeper Mind.  What I enjoy about hypnosis is that it's a virtually instant connection to the Muse.

How does it work?  The goal of hypnosis is to quiet the critical factor of your mind – the "monkey mind", the voice of the inner critic.  Quieting the critical factor allows your Subconscious mind (thus your Muse, creative intelligence, intuition, etc.) to communicate with you much more easily and fully.  Essentially, hypnosis creates a doorway.

Why do we need trance to access this level?  We're socialized, enculturated and educated, to act a certain way.  These forces create very strong filters and beliefs that affect our behavior, shape our perceptions and thinking and thus support and maintain the cultural status quo.  The huge price we pay for this is that many of us are essentially cut off from our own creativity.  Heartbreakingly, many children are told they can't sing, can't do art and this prevents them from pursuing those natural, artistic forms of expression.  Creative expression through music, art, movement, and writing, is meant for everyone, and is a vital source of mental and emotional health that is our birthright.

I've been gathering quotes and researching the idea of the Muse for some time and will leave you with a quote from one of my favorite poets, Denise Levertov, taken from a letter to a young poet who asked her how to devote himself to the art of poetry:

“The important thing is to keep yourself receptive to the muse, to language & impressions, so that when your time is free to write you are ready to do so — or if not to write (because there’s no virtue in simply writing a lot) then to read, look at nature, record your dreams (not to make poems out of them but because the habit of recalling them — which can be developed — & the act of recording them seems to function as a stimulating experience for the creative imagination."

And a more pragmatic quote attributed to writer Steven King. I get a kick out of this one since the idea of the Muse has more traditionally been feminine:

“There is a muse, but he’s not going to come fluttering down into your writing room and scatter creative fairy-dust all over your typewriter…Your job is to make sure the muse knows where you’re going to be every day from nine ’til noon or seven ’til three. If he does know, I assure you that sooner or later he’ll start showing up, chomping his cigar and making his magic.”
~ Stephen King

To book a session, call Lisa at 860-985-1682