Monday, April 11, 2016

JK - 4/11/16

Monday.  Something feels different.  

I did ceremony this weekend with some close friends, and some not so close friends.  We took LSD (only a little bit, but it was enough) and played drums all night.  The close friends stayed quiet, and yes; they got carried into some of what I call 'the typical drug persona': doing strange things so everyone can see them feeling strange.  Seeking attention.  At least, that's how it felt/feels to me when people act in that way.

As for me, I was quiet.  [Yes, let me speak for myself.]  Though my drum was at times very loud.  My favorite moments were when I would hum the 'Oh' vowel and find the frequency of the drum I was playing.  When I matched perfectly with it (which happened and then faded and then happened and then faded) it felt as though the whole room was vibration in that frequency and amplified into a unison.  

The two drums I was playing were a small darbuka and a larger djembe.  Both have holes in the bottom with long, cylindrical bodies that narrow about 3/4 of the way up to the top, and then expand outwards to become the size of the actual drum head.  I got the idea to flip the darbuka and use it as a simulated megaphone to ask someone who was talking too much to talk less.  Then I started laughing because I was really enjoying the sound.  When I tried humming the 'Oh' vowel from underneath the drum, the head began to resonate when I found it's frequency and then the whole shell began to vibrate.

I didn't ask for feedback from the group to see if they were feeling this shift.  I just went to the djembe and flipped it over and found it's fundamental frequency with an 'Oh' sound, and that was a whole other experience.  The pitch was significantly lower so it was a bit more challenging to sustain the low tone with my voice (thank you vocal training!), but also the body of the darbuka was metal and the djembe was wood, so the djembe vibration seemed fuller and richer.  The metal bounced the note around the cylinder and the air from my voice activated the drum head, while the body of the djembe seemed to FEEL the note I played and both the body AND the drum skin picked up the vibration.  

If you ever go into a music store and you see they have a djembe or hand drum of any kind with the hole in the bottom, make sure the drum is in tune and then flip it over and place the hole right on your face, like a mask.  Then hum an 'Oh' sound and vary the pitch in your voice until you find the note the drum is tuned to.  You can gve the drum a gentle tap with your middle finger, right in the center, to hear the note and then practice unifying it with the voice.  It's quite pleasing.

I feel rested today.  Healed from the ceremony and the offering of time and space to the ancient ones.  Things like that don't happen often, so when they do I use my time and my energy wisely.  I meditated a lot after the drumming and sound activation was complete.  I shared silent space with my close friend and felt his gratitude for the spiritual existence, cased in skin and bone.  The experience that is us and everyone else.  

After about 2 1/2 hours of deep breathing and emotional reflection, I drove back home and snuggled with my lady for a bit, then we went to yoga, where I sat in meditation the whole 75 minutes.  My goal lately is to begin extending my sit times beyond the one hour mark.  I find my body releases so much tension when I pass that threshold; maybe because I have conditioned myself to feel when the hour is approaching and, in a way, I become eager to get up or accomplish the mission of sitting for one hour, and my bones and muscles begin to ache and my mind goes a little haywire.

Yesterday though, when I felt myself pass the one hour point I made a micro adjustment in my posture and felt my entire system slow down and sink down.  The last 15 minutes were so pleasant, even though the 20 minutes leading up to it I was sweating profusely in my sweatshirt and feeling immense anxiety and tension from physical discomfort.  One day I hope to be able to sit through anything and feel at peace, even my worst nightmares.  

Practice makes better, that's what my drum teacher used to say.  Practice, practice, practice... 

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