Friday, October 08, 2010

The Power of a Storytelling

Stories have enormous power, unfortunately the very essence of that power is often crippled in the telling. True storytellers simply know how to communicate old stories in new ways. And, even when they use the same plot as before, it always seems to take on new life. This life flows not from some new fabrication of the events at hand, rather the outworking of a life that's actually been there. The aliveness comes from the life the story has within them, it just simply can't be contained.

Martin Buber once commented about the power of stories:

"A story must be told in such a way that it constitutes help in itself.

My grandfather was lame. Once they asked him to tell a story about his teacher. And he related how his teacher used to hop and dance while he prayed. My grandfather rose as he spoke, and he was so swept away by his story that he began to hop and dance to show how the master had done. From that hour he was cured of his lameness.

That's how to tell a story."
I'm fascinated not only how our very lives have been shaped by stories, but how powerful stories become in the authentic creative telling. Creativity is often simply pausing long enough to allow new ways to emerge for telling an old story. It is the very pause of contemplation that becomes the path that simply takes one deeper into the story itself.

The following is a short video by Storyteller Jay O'Callahan talking and demonstrating the power of stories.

1 comment:

Lucas Barrientes said...

Language matters.