OFFERING OURSELVES UP TO THE BEASTS OF OUR OWN MAKING


I hadn’t sung for over a month; the corner where the synthesizer, my tabla machine and music books are kept was strung with spider webs; ants had gotten into the honey I keep in a jar to moisten and sweeten my throat. I wasn’t good enough, never would be, so might as give the whole thing up. Never mind that my broken and rough voice that often sounds like a broken drum had given me years, and years of joy. Twenty years, in fact. How I got started is another long story. Suffice it to say, that a harmonium was given to me miraculously by someone after Donald died, and it is one of things that saved me. I taught myself to find a melody on the keys, I taught myself how to compose music for the lovely, healing, enlightening words from the Sikh holy text, The Granth Sahib; in my stupid arrogance I even sang a bit for tiny audiences. But the more I learn of music the more I know for certain how rudimentary my talent is; how the best musicians spend lifetimes on finding, then perfecting their voice.

But let me get back on track. The mind tends to digress over and over. I stopped singing. I let the thought that ‘I was not good enough’ destroy something so precious, so heart opening, so capable of changing the colors of my day (the word raga also means color). Stupid as this may sound, this is how stupid we all can be. We can let the brutes of brutal thoughts destroy that which is dearest to us. We don’t only let the brutes get it, but we actually, in our ignorance, offer it to them. We say, here chew it to bits. My happiness and joy and peace doesn’t matter to me in the least bit!

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