“Absolute vulnerability means opening yourself up. Perhaps a better way of phrasing it is letting things go. You let your masks go. Your suits of armor. Your persona of who you think you ought to be, or who you think others believe you to be” (The Writing Warrior: Discovering the Courage to Free Your True Voice by Laraine Herring, p.128).
Absolute vulnerability. How about relative vulnerability? Or only revealing certain of your inner relatives’ secrets?
In Jungian theory everybody has complexes which are basically subpersonalities. The interesting thing about complexes is that they are autonomous which means they talk and act as they please. So if you want to actualize the concept of absolute vulnerability, you let each of your complexes have its own true voice. Sound impossible? Let’s find out.
Each person who populates your dreams is a part of you. Each person is one of your subpersonalities. It’s actually not quite this simple; it’s a bit more complex. However, for practical purposes the following equation is true: your dream people = your subpersonalities.
Have a written or spoken dialogue with each person in your dream. Let the dream figure have his or her true voice by allowing that voice to make a spontaneous and autonomous reply. Write down the uncensored reply. Get to know each dream character as you would a person in your outer life. Write down each dream figure’s attitudes, preferences, beliefs, values or anti-values, expectations and life story.
You can get characters for your novel or short story from your dreams. You can let each dream character write his or her unique poems. Find out what each dream figure wants to write and give that figure the freedom to write it. You can’t get any more authentic than that.
“Your vulnerability, your willingness to be naked, connects others to your work” (ibid. p. 125).
And working with your dream figures connects you to yourself. Absolute vulnerability. Depends who’s talking.
Photo Credit: Photo by Bart Everson at Flickr Creative Commons
Linked with Thought-Provoking Thursday.