For everyone with nothing better to do, I’ve created this, my blog. Now, you can know everything you don’t really need to know about why I do the things I do – and how! These threads will discuss not only all things relating to creativity, innovation, music, poetry, spirituality, and singing, but also all the ways that these qualities interact with each other and why they must in the new world.
Wait! I know what you’re thinking – You’re wondering why I chose the title that I have for the blog. Well, to illustrate that, I need to point out somewhat of a built in irony first. And like all good things, this one starts with a story…
Just before we jumped into a lesson yesterday (I teach singing – more on that later), I had a student say to me “It sounds easy when you do it, but this speech level singing thing sure doesn’t seem easy to ME!” She was not happy that she wasn’t getting the perfect co-ordination she was after. This particular singer had never experienced singing from a naturally connected, speech level chest voice; so for a singer who has sung all her life in an light, breathy vocal production that was completely contrary to her speaking voice, this was anything but “natural”. And it certainly wasn’t effortless!
So, we all have our challenges – no matter what skill we are mastering. Lest we forget there was a time when riding a 2 wheel bike, or even doing up our shoe laces seemed like an impossible task never to be mastered. But in the end, we worked it out; through perserverence, we figured out what needed to be done, and we found the way to do it. And eventually, low and behold, it became effortless.
Which brings me to this: Even effortlessness though, requires a presence of mind of SOME kind. Without some kind of presence, then you might be effortless, sure, but you’re not really all there are you? You’re probably off in the clouds lazily shooting non-existent stars. Stay there if you want, but if you want to stay sane, you need to stay grounded. In Buddhism, that presence might be called, simply, “being“. Sounds easy right?
Try this simple exercise: notice the things in your immediate environment, and see how long you last before your mental chatter takes over and takes you away on a fantasy. The experience of noticing in the moment itself is effortless, but to have an active awareness of the experience, requires your full, uncompromising attention and commitment. So if at first, you find yourself struggling with “effortlessly being“, don’t fret; you’re no different than anyone else – and that’s what this whole blog is about. Besides, you can always head to the mountains to finally be alone and meditate. But if your like me, or like pretty much anybody else in the real world, that isn’t really a possibility. We have careers. We live in the city. We lead modern lives.
So this is where my blog begins.