Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Tuning forks

It's been awhile since I've written an entry. Life has been busy and mine is no exception as I made a decision to leave an institution I had been with for 12 years. Why would I do such a thing in the economic climate that we are in? Well, it had more to do with the calling of my heart than security in money, homes or things.

A few years ago I was introduced to community singing in the aural tradition. No music reading ability needed as songs were taught by rote, line by line. Once we were secure in the 4-6 lines we were invited to sink deeply into beautiful poems and melodies and to play with harmonies in old spirituals. After so many years of singing in choirs and doing what the page and the director had in mind, I was ready to go out on a limb and try something new.

One of the first chants I learned was a blessing that many faith traditions call their own. It's pretty universal: When you were born, you cried and the world rejoiced. Live your life so, that when you die the world cries and you rejoice. I don't know what was more influential, the words, the pseudo-Native American tune or the marriage of the two, but this song has become a personal tuning fork. Each time I sing it, it goes straight to my core and asks me: Are you living the life that will bring the most possible joy to the world? Like a tuning fork, singing it helps me remember my life's purpose and helps me recalibrate my actions so they resonate more fully, less dissonantly, with myself, with others.

So, I'm in the process of recalibrating my life. Over the last five years I have been releasing the hold certain activities had on my schedule and I just let go of the biggest one, a full-time job with benefits. What's next, my thoughtful and concerned friends ask? I'm hoping to develop more community development programs that incorporate singing and dancing. More details to come. J

Before I sign off, I want to ask you, dear reader and friend, what is your tuning fork? Is there a song or a painting or person in your life that has the effect of clearing the distractions and helps you focus on what's true in your world? Please feel free to share.

2 comments:

  1. I potentially have thousands of answers to this questions. You might want something more specific. I will assume you don't want to hear all of them. :) One of those many answers is just the experience of community singing. Community singing for me centers me, draws me into my heart and asks me to consider...am I adding my voice, my energy to the circle, the world? Am I listening to other voices? Am bringing my actions into harmony with the world, with the Spirit, with love?

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  2. I offer a quote from Eleanor Roosevelt: "The future belongs to those who believe in the beauty of their dreams" You are courageously following a path from your heart, embracing your intuition and your talent. You will vibrate as one in tune with the universe. I'm delighted to be in your sphere! With love, Ann Melrose

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