Singing in Your Mind

Posted: August 7, 2010 in Overcoming Delusion

Everyone has a “practice” that re-connects them to their soul.  Whether it’s meditation or yoga, writing or sharing with another human being — doing that THING, brings them back to themselves. Brings me back to me. How many times have you found yourself avoiding the one thing that seems to cleanse your spirit? It seems like such a contradiction to know in your brain that you feel so much BETTER when you just go with that little voice inside.  Instead we second-guess ourselves, we question the instinct of giving into that whim.  We get caught up in the mundane bullshit REASONABLENESS of status quo bare-minimum existing.  We actually tell ourselves that it’s okay to be ordinary.  It doesn’t do much good when dancing in your mind takes the place of letting the music flow through you and DOING it. It is the act and the permission and the abandon and connection that wakes your spirit.  Just as exercise is cathartic for getting those toxins out of your muscles, so too our soul needs release.

I danced and realized that fucking-hell, my inner-ear balance (from lack of spinning) was WAY off.  It’s amazing how quickly we forget, use-it-or-lose-it. Dancing isn’t only about going through the motions, it’s about staying proficient, staying sexy, staying SHARP. But mostly… we don’t mind going through life a dull-blade, do we? At what point does it just become too much trouble to keep our creativity honed? To let that goddess-inside come out to play? Stay in touch with ourselves by reaching out to others? We FOOL ourselves into thinking that we will step up to the plate if the situation calls for us to.  That if we don’t speak a second language, a foreign-language, for years — we’ll be able to call up that library whenever we want.  What in your life has ever confirmed that this is TRUE? That if the footprint-of-habit is not ingrained deeply, that we’ll be able to walk organically in those steps?  That we’re waiting for love to find us — THEN we’ll be prepared to reciprocate,… but what’s the first thing that runs through your mind when it actually happens?  Ohshit I am SO not-ready!  What about if you’re waiting for LIFE to find you? How can it possibly be productive to not be ready to be ME?!  The best of me, the most of me, the FULLNESS of me.

I lay in bed and dream of dancing.  I choreograph entire musicals with dialogue and scenes and backdrops and lighting,… and the plays are good.  And then, when I let go and danced in the kitchen, I found out the truth — that reality was not in-line with what I thought it was GOING to be.  And… it was my fault.

When I had my first car, it was a hand-me-down that I “hated”. It was an ugly, green, 1971 Plymouth Duster.  I trashed that car.  Didn’t take care of it, didn’t clean it, didn’t maintain the engine, didn’t give it attention.  That car just wasn’t COOL enough for me.  I remember talking to God about how if only He’d just give me a car worthy of me, THEN I’d take care of it.  THEN I’d keep it neat & clean, do all the things I was SUPPOSED to do.  And I recall distinctly putting myself in God’s shoes.  If I were God, would I believe me? Why in the world WOULD I believe me? Where was the PROOF?  I wasn’t proving that I could take care of what I HAD, no matter my low opinion of how unfair it was to get saddled with a beneath-me crappy car.  So I decided to change.  I made a decision to prove to God (and myself) that I could take care of what I had, then at least I could cover my ass that I was doing my part to BE worthy.  Worthy to receive a “good” car.  Or hell, a good life.  It’s all symbolic.  And relative.  I didn’t get a new car — but you know what?  When I look back on it, that car was awesome.  I burned out one engine, it got me across the United States (from Florida to California) SEVERAL times.  Down to Mexico.  Not to mention what it did BEFORE it ever got bequeathed to me.  My parents were the original owners, we drove all OVER.  From FL to Indiana many MANY times.  We had it in Germany and it took us to many COUNTRIES.  My brothers & I slept, played games, fought, didn’t wear our seatbelts, thousands of miles in the backseat of that car. I watched my dad work on that car, I learned how to not be scared to get under the hood on THAT car.  I got three flat tires in one WEEK on that car, I learned real fast how to change a tire (God obviously wanted me to check that one off.)  I changed a radiator, a carburator, a starter, fan belts, and batteries on that beauty. I didn’t know what I had.  I didn’t appreciate it.  I just… just… didn’t KNOW.

There’s a law-of-nature called entropy.  Essentially, it means that all things degrade from the moment that it comes into existence.  Things don’t get newer, or shiny-er, or less weedy left on its own.  Just as a practice doesn’t usually miraculously IMPROVE when not touching it. Buuuut maybe our ability to FANTASIZE that it will, does lol.

I think I always remember writing.  I have poems (or rather, attempts at poems) from when I was a kid.  It was a big secret — I wouldn’t let anyone read my poetry or words.  It took a moment of pure indifference and rejection for me to shift my protecting my work. Which was probably more representative of protecting me.  Or rather, my hiding.  I wrote a poem for someone who I thought was special.  When I unveiled my grand gesture of gifting them, no BLESSING them with a wondrous gift of a poem by me (insert genuflection here), I expected adoration and APPRECIATION dammit.  And what I got was “gheeezzeee this is so looonnng… do I have to read it all at one time?” What the fuck?!  Didn’t this person realize they were supposed to drop to their knees and worship the fact that I’d graced them with the rare treat of me sharing MySELF through my words?? Talk about laying my soul open and having someone wipe their feet on it.  It was a profound epiphany for me to immediately get the insight to respond with “fuck YOU. You don’t EVER have to read it, you ass-hat!”  It helped me, CURED me, to have that interruption to my ego-of-writing — a slap in the face to glorifying my secretiveness.  I had an attachment to associating my words with revealing a piece of my soul.  And I had an aversion to letting those pieces flow free into the universe.  I held them to myself tightly, horded them, thinking that would keep them safe — keep ME safe.  If I let you see into me you might reject me.  My words came from inside of me, if you rejected them, you were rejecting a part of me.  It took a knuckle-head insensitive dork to get me to see the light.  I thought I was bestowing something divine on him, when really he gave me the most precious RIGHTEOUS lesson to escape from a prison I was locking myself.  From that moment, I adopted a “fuckyou” attitude when it came to my writing.  I decided that I was no longer going to hurt myself by shying-away from the possibility of getting hurt.  REJECT ME PLEASE! Go ahead! I consciously shifted my perception from withholding, to making it more of a priority to look foolish and write badly and risk rejection, yet WRITE — rather than sneak furtively around a labyrinth-world of fear.  I started sharing my words and work with anyone and everyone.  The insecurity and anxiousness lessened with each foray.  Amazingly enough, so did it with regard to my talent and skill.  Talent is that thing you’re born with — skill is the extra effort and dedication you devote to it to make it something you can call up in an instant.  If you dedicate a few minutes a day to being physically flexible, it will improve and just BE THERE when you need it.

I started a regimen of writing poetry every morning.  It was a numbers game… if 2% of what I write is “good” and I only write one poem a week, the odds are shitty. If I write 10 poems every morning, 8 will be crap, but TWO… two will be “right.”  And that just means over the course of a week, the odds increase exponentially.  I got better.  I got faster.  I tapped-into that part within myself that breathes deep and channels the words from someplace that is not me,… someplace GREATER than me.  I wasn’t scared of it anymore.  I also learned the facets and limitations of my skill.  If you know a short-coming, you can eliminate it.  If you discover something new, you can capitalize on it.  I found I wrote better at different times of the day.  I found out that writing with a pen on paper produced different results than when I typed on a keyboard — the connection between my brain & the words just translated differently. I found I had difficulty trying to write songs, which I thought was just a poem that rhymed.  I found I could write in different voices depending on whether it was a story or screenplay or poem.

We use different sides of our brain for logic than creativity.  I use either side at will — I can write logical poems, I can write creative poems. How do I know these things?  By action.  By testing myself.

I also concentrated differently with noise than with quiet. Sometimes I purposely wrote with distraction which forces me to tune-out my surrounding and zero-in on my concentration.  (My dad could never understand how he’d find me in my room with the t.v. AND the radio on while I was studying haha.)   Have you ever seen someone concentrating and stick their tongue out or bite their lip?  I heard it somewhere that concentration and processing motor input use the same hemisphere of the brain, the two activities fight for the same piece of brain-computer, so by biting your tongue you suspend motor activity, reducing interference.  You have just freed up a stronger signal to certain parts of your brain to get the synapses firing — you hit that nitrous button.  The vehicle’s the same, you just added a little turbo-boost.  Like a white-noise machine to help you sleep.  If you knew these scientific considerations, would you consciously stop yourself from doing them? Of course not.  There’s a whole science called neurolinguistics — get this fancy sentence, it’s “focused on investigating how the brain can implement the processes that theoretical and psycholinguistics propose are necessary in producing and comprehending language.”  Pretty cool that I get to find a label to describe what I self-experimented on myself about.

The more I wrote & read my poems and was satisfied I knew the difference between regular and special, the more confidence I gained.  The more confidence I gained, the more I did it.

Security is a use-it-or-lose-it thing too.  If you don’t test yourself, put yourself OUT there, you’ll start to doubt the essence of you.  You will be intimidated at the prospect of not trusting that you COULD do it, could BE it.  A practice brings us back to ourselves. Not touching upon your practice numbs your mind to KNOWING the reality of the situation.  Denial is refusing to look in the mirror so you don’t see the wrinkles there.  Wishful thinking is believing you’re still that football athlete or cheerleader size you were in high-school as long as you don’t put on that letter-jacket or daisy-dukes shorts you USED to wear.

Dancing… writing…flexibility… moving through society — every man is the most patient person on an island.  And practicing singing in your mind, an opera-singer of you does not make.  You better find out the truth before you go signing-up to audition for American Idol.

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  1. Good stuff from you, man. Ive read your stuff just before and youre just too awesome. I like what youve got here, like what youre saying along with the way you say it. You make it entertaining and you nonetheless manage to keep it smart. I cant wait to read much more from you. This is really an incredible weblog.

  2. K says:

    Awesome…you took me on a journey, you made me think…you’ve inspired me

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