Sunday, 4 January 2015

'Note-taking is fundamental in achieving a powerful existence.'

If you haven't already guessed from the name of this blog, or my peculiar habit of breathlessly writing about words, I am completely enamoured by words. And, stemming from this simple, undeterred compassion as a word-smith - a dealer of letters and words - I have a penchant for outputting these thoughts and derailed emotions into a physical substance, usually, a notebook of some sorts. Though just as equally scribbled on the back of a receipt, typed on my type-writer, hastily scrawled in a journal, a scrapbook, a screwed-up bus ticket or an old cinema ticket discovered by luck at the bottom of my bag. Quite frankly, anything within a close proximity that I can stain my thoughts with. This web space in its entirety of chaos and personal essays, is for me, and potentially you, a metaphorical notebook. A place to collate, collect and share boundless thoughts and ideas. 

I believe in the act of note-taking. I believe in documenting our consciousness. I believe in the notion that humans possess a fated, sincere power to recollect and reminisce, a power planned and considered as an act of fate. If else, what is the purpose of memory? I believe in self-preservation and self-documentation regardless of circumstance.

Note-taking is important for many reasons. First of all, the thoughts in our heads are imperceivable in the deepest realms of dark magic possessed by humanity: it is the kind of mundane dark magic held responsible for personal secrecy - a continuously disguised torrent of unique brain activity that cumulates into the thought sequences at the base of your current existence: YOU. And we only ever share the tiniest portion of all of this behind the scenes activity. Dark magic exists in our heads as a powerful force of thoughts. Our personal voice and personal secrets are the force of this dark magic. 

-Shel Silverstein 

This voice of your running mental commentary is an act of your dark magic, because you cannot describe it on command. It becomes distant and blurry. Magic. 

Which is why note taking is an extraordinary act. It allows us to exert our thoughts and tie these threads of thought into tangible means - the voice becomes a written reality. The physicality of thoughts of paper is the thread that ties together reality and consciousness. 

Which is precisely the beauty in notebooks. Notebooks themselves offer up solace and comfort. In our heads, our thoughts are often so tangled and knotted and often so fleeting that they represent no real substance. But to write down your thoughts, your brain combs through these knots and untangles the tangles. You consider what you are actually thinking, rather than fleetingly thinking about thinking. It's a physical and in-depth form of meta-cognition: questioning your own thoughts and philosophies through understanding and controlling your mind.

The special thing about a notebook is that it is exactly that: a book of notes. Notes do not have to conform or possess an archaic structure but notes can blossom over the page and bloom into chaos and disfigurement, existing. They are real. Your thoughts are a real and live thing, ready to jump off the page and into somebody else's mind with one glance. 

You created that.

You have the power to transfer compassion and love and despair and hatred and kindness and selfishness through these pages of words: emotions entwined so deep into our souls that we do not question their origin, but by creating emotions out of thoughts, you create an origin. You turn these inner emotions into powerful lines and symbols to comfort, to inspire and to consolidate. To enthral, to hurt, to kill. 

Softly spoken, lonesome words are a powerful substance when emitted into the atmosphere from the touch of your lips. But, when acting as a parasite to blank paper, these words are inevitable. They will cling to the lifetime of that paper. Written notes are incredibly powerful.

Yet note-taking does not have to belong to a physical format. Experiment with all forms of note-taking: absorb and employ all methods required to savour and document your thoughts. Create a physical notebook or a metaphorical notebook, an online journal, a flurry of mental notes or restlessly spoken notes. 

Appreciate the variation of this power you have as a human. These notes are your thoughts, regardless of their form: on paper or in your head. Private, personal mental notes are just as valuable as hastily scribbled notes.

Think, and have thoughts. Noteworthy thoughts. To be able to do so is a gift, if only delivered by the possession of dark magic.

And you have this power, this gift, this force, at your very fingertips.

So create. Do good with it. Trace your fingers over a completed spiral of thoughts. Share these thoughts - share them wide and far, or only with your fulsome being, for you, you, are powerful, and you have the power to have an impact, if only on the solace you find within yourself. 

Use it wisely.


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