I have very clear recollections of my earliest experiences with music. Listening to music as a one, two and three year old baby, music was pure magic. It was an actual mystical experience, with no notes, voices, instruments etc’, unmatched by anything else that this baby knew. It wasn’t just about sounds. It transported me beyond and out of the physical dimension of our reality.
In fact, I can vividly remember myself siting in my parents’ living room, on the carpet, in front of the speaker, listening to music. At some later point in time, I suddenly saw the speaker in front me. In between the first and second time of my noticing the speaker, I wasn’t there. I have no idea where I’ve been. But I do remember that I was fascinated and not at all asleep.
At the age of five, I picked up my first musical instrument. In the years that followed I practiced almost every day, learned music theory, listened to an increasingly larger and more diverse body of music, composed music, got an undergraduate degree in music and worked as a professional musician for many years.
In all these years and with all this hard work, I tried to become better as a musician. With every bit of progress that I’ve made, I was unknowingly losing something. I was coming closer to one thing, at the expense of getting farther away from something else.
What I was losing was the magic. The mystery and the mystical experience were no longer there. By the time I realized this, they were not there for already a very long time. The word remained the same – that is: Music – but it was transformed from a non-physical experience that cannot be grasped, into a bunch of data that was easily understood and devoid of anything magical: names of notes, rhythms, instruments, styles, tempos, keys etc’.
I had to undergo an extreme personal crisis which involved the collapsing of much more than just music, and later on completely lose any interest in music for several years. It was only after years of being indifferent to music – not making and not even listening to music – before I began noticing something special: a spark – something magical.
I had to let go of control (being a musician means to be in control), in order to rediscover – at least partially – the mystical experience that I once knew through music.
But what I have discovered this time around – now as an adult – is far more amazing;
I’ve discovered that the magic and the mystical experience that I have found through music as a baby, does not exclusively belong in the realm of music. The magic and the mystical experience are an inseparable part of the present moment. When I allow everything to stop – the doing, the thinking, the feeling, the talking – in the silence and stillness which then unfolds, the magic and mystical reveals itself in a way that cannot be denied. It’s real and palpable – perhaps even more real than what we call ‘Reality’.
Why am I sharing all this with you?
We all belong in a society that from day one teaches us things. The first thing that it teaches us, is to trust it and its teachings, as being something of value and importance which in time, will serve us as a necessary tool. We believe the messages that we receive and after a while they become subconscious; we no longer see a separation between what has been within us from the beginning, and that which has been imposed on us later.
I studied music because society’s idea was that gaining control over music (which in all truth, is impossible to begin with), will benefit me. I believed in that and I followed this idea every day for thirty five years. Only when reality hit me in the face hard enough to wake me up, was I suddenly aware of how wrong was the teaching that I’ve embraced, and how far I have gone from the truth and from reality.
I bring up music because it is my own personal example. But every person has their own unique path. So many of us live severed from reality – unknowingly. Just as I believed that my ideas, thoughts and actions were good and right and were serving me in the best possible way, so do many of us. So many of us live rather automatically from one day to the next, with this nagging recognition somewhere in the background, that there’s something much better, much deeper. We know this intuitively and recognize its truth. Some of us actually venture out to actively seek it by a variety of means, while some of us dismiss their inner truth as daydreaming and nothing more than mare imagination.
This might leave us with some questions:
- Am I one of those people? Do I intuitively know that there’s something much vaster available to me than my day-to-day living?
- What’s my path and where is it taking me?
- In hindsight, do I see myself getting continuously closer to something, or continuously farther away?
And perhaps the ultimate question:
Am I even interested in asking myself any of these questions?