Writing as Meditation with Ruth Ozeki

January 27, 2022 | 1

At the New York Times, Ruth Ozeki speaks to Ezra Klein about her latest novel, The Book of Form and Emptiness, and how she used meditation practices to get into the mind of her characters. “Very often meditation is something that we think of as being done with the mind,” Ozeki explains. “And I actually experience it somewhat differently. I experience it as something that starts in the body and is really rooted in the body.And I think that’s true for writing too. That certainly when I’m writing fictional characters, one of the most important things is that I get out of my head and into the felt experience, the physical somatic experience of my characters. And I need to find interesting ways to do that, ways that will communicate in an authentic way that will evoke physical feelings, emotional feelings, rather than simply being clichés.”

is a writer and illustrator. She is the author of two illustrated books, Last Night's Reading (Penguin Books, 2015) and Sanpaku (Archaia 2018).

One comment:

  1. A part of my evening routine is a journaling meditation that takes about 15 minutes. Incorporating writing in this way is one of the things that made meditation accessible for me since I’m neurodivergent. Having that outlet for my thinking as I’m trying to sit still was an absolute game-changer for me.

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