Archive for the ‘1’ Category

April 21, 2010

A year ago, I was counting the last days of working with a national bank. I had had a lot of fun on a program called “Transformation.” (I couldn’t make that up!) I was working with the IT Operations area of the bank — the folks who make sure your email works and your computer comes up every morning and all the checks are processed and the ATMs key in. They are the behind-the-scenes elbow oil that greased everything that worked. I had helped them communicate what they do with other areas of the bank, and it was impressive to see the results for everyone. Now, that was going away. I had no idea what I’d do next, or where my income would come from. But I’d been hearing “Do not be afraid. Do not be afraid. Trust.” for months. I was up to bat.

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April 8, 2010

As I come around to being in this adventure with the singing bowls for almost a year, I have started the process of writing a book. Well, I started the writing process last year. Now, I’m in the process of producing the book.

I’ve learned about Book Proposals and how non-fiction books are devveloped and sold. I’m working with a published author in this process, June Cotner, and using Michael Larsen’s book How to Write a Book Proposal. Since I’ve written for a living for 30 years, I don’t expect the Muse to jump on my shoulder. Writing is mostly about writing. Putting words on paper or electronic screens, zapping ’em out, trying others, letting them roll around on the tongue and seeing whether they’re worthy of the taste. This venture though has offered me some of the most fun writing. I’ve been taking some risks, trying new things out. (I didn’t get to write much dialog, except for video scripts in most of my business stints.) I’m mixing poetic lines in and portraying actions, “blocking” the characters (who is often me) with gesture and movement.

Playing the bowls hasn’t been like that at all. I just sit and listen and play. Well, that happens with writing too, but there are no re-writes with the bowls, except when I’m recording.

Playing the bowls is magic. In Cincinnati this past weekend, we had a bunch of bowls to experiment with and we did. Sounds that shouldn’t have sounded right together did, and harmonics that should have worked didn’t. These bowls are truly alchemical. The gems and metals that are incorporated in them as well as their notes have amazingly multi-dimensional influences.

I say to people these are soooo different than the quartz bowls, and until you hear them you may not believe me. Once you do though, it’s another story. And their sounds and combinations are like the sounds when I hear the bell tones. Nowadays though, I seem to get more of the atmospheric cloud of sound and the high-altitude foggy right ear. Funniest thing. I know it means “Pay attention. Listen.” but I wish they would come up with something more pleasant than feeling like I’ve just gone up 77 stories in an elevator and my right ear hasn’t popped yet. Well, it does make me pay attention.

So that’s what’s happening in my world. April is a month of private engagements, rather than public ones. Seems to be a time of deepening for us all.

March 18, 2010

Sometimes I get a bit stunned by what has happened over the last nine months. A year ago, nobody could have told me I’d be playing singing bowls for a living. I would have said they were insane. Maybe I’m the crazy one. And I couldn’t be happier.

This time last year, I owned one Crystal Tone bowl — the lovely Grandmother in F#, all 7 petite inches of her. Sweet, sweet, sweet. I had four Tibetan bowls. I now have 12 Crystal Tone bowls, and over 20 Tibetans in all shapes and sizes (including the elusive Lotus, 7 rare stem bowls, the singular Mani, and a Bodhi).

When I met the gem crystal bowls by Crystal Tones, I finally found something that replicated the bell-like tones I heard from the Universe. I discern that it is because the gem crystal bowls, combine quartz with a gemstone such as ruby, emerald or diamond or a metal such as indium or iron, to produce the multi-dimensional harmonics that quartz bowls cannot. In the same way that the combination of various metals in the Tibetan bowls each produce both a single pitch and blend with the others for new harmonics, so do these gem crystal bowls.

Of course, once I met these bowls, the sounds changed again. They became like a cloud or aura around me that I could sense. It’s led me to believe that we are more like dolphins and bats than we recognize.

I also hear chords now, which are gorgeous. And just the other day, I received a single note that appeared as a 3-inch vertical line of gold about 8 inches from my head.

In addition to how the sounds that I hear are different than they were, so too the bowls are changing in their sounds. They become more profound with each playing. I am also grateful to my audiences whose numbers are growing. 60 people came to the Beachwood library two weeks ago. This past Sunday, I was the main “speaker” at a Unity service where 92 people attended, some from my invitation — “a full house” the minister told me.

In addition, I have had a Book Concept Analysis completed by June Cotner http://www.junecotner.com/, who has encouraged me to move forward with the project. (I can highly recommend her services.) So I am putting together a formal Book Proposal on how I came to play the singing bowls and the sounds I have heard all my life.

Nine months. That’s all it’s been. Nine months of starting from a seed to all this blossoming. And here it is Spring!

March 4, 2010

“What is wonderful about music is that it helps man to concentrate or meditate independently of thought. Therefore music seems to be the bridge over the gulf between the form and the formless. If there is anything intelligent, effective, and at the same time formless, it is music. Poetry suggests form, line and color suggest form, but music suggests no form.

“Music also produces that resonance which vibrates through the whole being…

“… Music touches our innermost being, and in that way produces new life, a life that gives exaltation to the whole being, raising it to that perfection in which lies the fulfillment of man’s life.”  — Hazrat Inayat Khan, The Mysticism of Sound and Music

Hazrat Inayat Khan’s Chisti lineage of Sufism is worth getting to know more about, if you’re interested in sound. Zikr (dhzikr) is amazing chanting of God’s names and sacred phrases in group. In this way, one enters that beautiful gateway of the Divine.

Hello world!

February 17, 2010

I started actively exploring sound 10 years ago, because I have heard musical sounds all my life with no identifiable external source. The first sounds were a high pitch “ee” sound, very linear in nature.  I wanted to create a relationship with these sounds, so I began to listen more and look for ways to communicate with them. As a result, the sounds have changed over time, in shape, size and even musical range. This journey has also led me to ancient Tibetan singing bowls, gem crystal alchemy bowls and tuning forks. The harmonics created by these bowls are extremely relaxing and certainly relieve the stress of everyday life. So I have been taking these harmonies out into the world and playing for people in nursing homes, spiritual retreat centers, yoga studios, hospice, public libraries, etc.

Feb 23

As I re-read Hazrat Inayat Khan’s work, I am impressed with so much of his expression about how utterly central music is to our lives. In Chapter 3, he writes, “Music as we know in our everyday language is only a miniature: that which our intelligence has grasped from that music or harmony of the whole universe which is working behind us. The music of the universe is the background of the little picture we call music. ”

He could have ended the paragraph there, but he extends this. He says, “Our sense of music, our attraction to music, shows that music is in the depth of our being. Music is behind the working of the whole universe. Music is not only life’s greatest object, but music is life itself.” 

In addition to Hazrat Inayat Khan’s book, I have been reading Russill Paul’s The Yoga of Sound. His book is a wonderful in-depth study of sound and practices that I would highly recommend to anyone wanting to explore sound. As his subtitle states: “Tapping the Hidden Power of Music and Chant.”

Feb 17

I was very fortunate that Hazrat Inayat Khan (1882 – 1927) is in my direct Sufi lineage. Inayat Khan was a famous musician in India and was directed by his teacher to take Sufism’s message of “love, harmony and beauty” to the West in 1910. He even came to Cleveland, OH in his travels. His grandson Pir Zia Inayat Khan is now part of my lineage. Hazrat Inayat Khan (Hazrat is an honorific title I use for this master) wrote a book I note on my web site called The Mysticism of Sound and Music. Here are a few passages to offer some of the wonderful wisdom available in that book.

Chapter 1 offers: “The beauty of music is that it is the source of creation and the means of absorbing it. ”

Later: “The true use of music is to become musical in one’s thoughts, words and actions. One should be able to give the harmony for which the soul yearns and longs every moment. All the tragedy in the world, in the individual, and in the multitude, comes from lack of harmony, and harmony is best given by producing it in one’s own life.” 

I am grateful that Hazrat Inayat Khan talks of how we can manifest harmony in our lives. Whether we are trained in music or not, music’s importance lies in its beauty and harmony and what these qualities offer. He speaks later in the book about how carefully we must use our voice and language and even our thoughts to truly be harmonious. The influence of vibration is profound.

Chapter 2 begins: “According to the esoteric standpoint, music is the beginning and end of the universe. All actions and movements made in the visible and invisible world are musical. That is: they are made up of vibrations pertaining to a certain plane of existence.”

I don’t know that any comments I make do justice to this writing. He explores the esoteric aspects of this statement, and I will continue to provide some of these passages as thoughts to consider.

I started on these notes today, because I had opened the book to Chapter 17 – The Effect of Sound on the Physical Body and the statement: “Sound becomes visible in the form of radiance.”  Since I’ve been working with this sense of sonic aura, that statement leapt off the page. I do not see auras, but radiance is a form of energy we know from all living beings. I can feel the vibrant glow of living beings, even stones and crystals. Recently, I’ve been trying to tune into the feeling/vibration my arms, palms and dan tien achieve in certain Tai Chi/Qi Gong moves.  I have no doubt about feeling the chi, and the only way I can be doing so is through vibration. I am in awe that we live in a time when so many of us can link between the mastery of Tai Chi and Sufism for greater awareness.

Feb. 10

So, here’s a story. I’m playing at a hospice yesterday as a sort of interview, not long, a few minutes maybe. And this workman comes over to see what is making these sounds. He’s absolutely mesmerized. Then he tells me about how his brother would love this, his brother in a wheelchair and how he loves music. And I think all the stories we could never guess that people are traveling around with, right under their skin. We would treat people so much richer if we had even an inkling or could regard them in this way without the inkling.

My other observation is how my Tibetans love to play with the gem crystal bowls now. They pour their voices into them, literally like water and wait for it to rise out of the crystal bowl in a whole new way. And I am most enjoying the 5 stem bowls that love to play together. All sorts of combinations, and when I begin with them, they just want to go on and their resonance rises. They are making room for the 6th and the beautiful mending 7th. Ahhhh, the mending one. If you could see him, you would know why I love him so. Old, old, old and the work of an old monk or artisan. Thinner walled than the others I have and the shape elegant. Finely tapped all around the inside of the rim, and sanded clean, only to be mixed over the years by corrosion and patinas of all sorts. A small void occurs at the base where solder should have melded the joining, so now it rings sometimes when it should only hum. But each time I look or hold him, I couldn’t be happier or graced with a better bowl. I could describe each of my bowls in a similar way. They are such a relationship. The bowls have voices beyond the ones we hear.

Feb. 5

So for the past week since I posited this idea of the sonic body, which I doubt by the way is new, I have been listening and sensing.  Here’s what I’ve discovered so far. I seem to sense sound from my abdominal area — the dan tien, hara, around the solar plexus, but a bit below and above the navel. I am noticing a sense of pulse there, which is my pulse, but seems to radiate out from my body much stronger than I’ve noticed in the past. I’ll note here that I’ve been doing Tai Chi for the past 6-7 years and Qi Gong before that, so I have been aware of my dan tien for a while, but this sense of sound there as well as chi or perhaps as chi, is an interesting exploration. Of course the martial arts have worked with the power of sound for years. I may not be saying anything new here, but inviting you to explore this avenue. Since I initially had sounds come through my head, I thought I might find the transmitter or receiver there, and it may well be there. What this abdominal signal sense is telling me is that there may be more than one portal and this may simply be my strongest. In the same way some of our chakras have stronger senses than others, perhaps I am just experiencing sound the same way.  

Feb. 1

A great deal has been written about “light” in the metaphysical world and its connection with energy and its ability to inform us. Much valid information exists for that medium. Here, I would like to begin discussing the importance of sound in the arena of energy.  Many of us have read some of the writings of sound healers. Some of us have worked with chanting or toning or playing tuning forks or singing bowls. When we work with sound, we feel sound. We feel its physical manifestation, its incarnation into our world of being. To me this denotes a form of consciousness and a different experience from seeing light or image. Some people also feel light (warmth or presence), but often light is about seeing. So let’s go a step further and start considering that just as we have an auric body usually seen as light and colors that same body might be experienced as sound. What if we started focusing attention on the sonic body, and started to try to feel sound or use our own sonar the way dolphins and whales do?  I’ll leave you with that question and jump in with questions or comments if you like.

January 5, 2010

Jan. 24

I have decided to change content on this blog and provide articles on my thoughts about certain subjects, e.g. resonance, sonar, the possibility of a sonic aura, etc.  I intend to present the first article soon, and wanted to explain my absence from these pages. If you have topics you would like me to cover or if you have enjoyed the current format please let me know.  Thank you.

Jan. 9

I sit for a long time and just play one bowl. It is deep and melodic. I listen for the layers of sound. One bowl is all you need. However, when combined with other bowls, the layers and combinations meld, so you don’t know where they’re coming from or where they will emerge to.  

Jan. 7

More stem bowls arrive, with two for sale. These are amazing with their sound. C, F, A – a melodic combination.  

Jan. 6 Epiphany

What’s important to me in this journey may not be important to you. I often try to make sense of the differences between people, yet I return to the sense of connection.  Epiphany, a time of great insights. This is the day in the Church calendar when the Magi found the Christ child and honored him. After this Jesus is no longer anonymous and change is imminent as the family flees to Egypt to save the child’s life. Dreams, astrologers, irate kings — great story. I am sorting through what and how to develop things this year. Another CD to plan, work in hospitals, teaching, more work with resonance.  

Jan. 5

Need to go play the bowls.

Jan. 4

I arrive home in a snowstorm. Not too surprising for Cleveland at this time of year. The bowls are glad to be home. 

Jan. 3

We had a drumming circle last night and I played one of the bowls, a nice deep one (Androgynous Indium, G#). Gene plays his Kyanite/Citrine/Indium B bowl and they make a nice complement. I am introduced to Song Pods, hand-held metal shells that you rotate to make beautiful chime sounds. You can find them at http://tinyurl.com/y8lzxwa . Today, I played for our other host and did the session with my friend Barb, who put stones all around this woman and on her, etc.  The woman had made an intention as we began the session as I usually suggest, and it came in strongly, very strongly at one point– literally pushing it into her body. One new sequence which uses 5 bowls varies itself incredibly in this session and plays a long time and is so rich, I don’t know what to make of it except that I keep on playing. At the end, there is a point where it feels like the end, yet I get the sense to continue. I don’t know where that comes from either, but all the bowls wanted to play and had not yet. So I continued. I mention this and Barb said she had felt the energies leave and I had stoppped and then continued. She hadn’t been sure what to make of that, but at least I had confirmed that a shift did occur. Perhaps our recipient wanted more (I usually do!) and that’s why the session continued; perhaps all the bowls wanted to play. Interesting. What I do know is that the work is powerful.These two days confirm the importance of  individual work as well as the group sessions.

Jan. 2

We arrive at the retreat center, which is a beautiful horse farm in Kentucky. As I set out the bowls, one woman picks them up and asks which bowls are for which chakras or how do you pick a bowls. I say “The bowl picks you.” Which is usually the case. She selects a beauty — a warm, rich bowl. We do sessions throughout the day being givers and recipients. I am a recipient for a woman who works with tuning forks and another who works with inaudible sound, like the dolphins’ sonar. I can feel the dolphin frequencies from her, and the tuning forks are cool, b/c they are so clearly “felt”. I later play for one of our hosts, who goes very deep. She cannot believe how wonderful it is. I know too the bowls are blessing their land. Later I play for the group as the lasagna gets slightly burnt by our inattention to it when everybody zones out. The concert ends with the master bowl from the Bon monks and Rose Quartz/White Gold Alchemy — this combination is both shamanic and sweet. People are always amazed by the bowls. I am amazed. I hope to be always amazed.

January 1, 2010

Who would have thought I’d really be here! 2010! I play for these people I’ve known 30 years. One comes up later and says the crystal bowls were too sharp for her, but she liked the Tibetan bowls. I’ve heard this a couple of times before. I know I get sensitive to certain frequencies. I’d like to know more about this. The 20 year olds come up and are very interested. They play them, I tell my story how I got into them.  I had wondered if the one with the rock ‘n roll bands would find them interesting. It seems he does somewhat, but the one who’s been a musician much of his life is quite intrigued. Now an animator, perhaps they will be a point of inspiration. Another who is a statistician, but whose mother is into alternative therapies, is also intrigued. Then I’m off to Cincinnati to meet friends and leave for Kentucky.

December 31, 2009

Dec. 31

I get ready to go on adventures. I am taking the bowls to my annual New Year’s party and then on to Kentucky and a weekend with energy practitioners. I feel slightly sick, with a headache much of the day and what I want most to do is lie down and sleep (which is how I process information coming from other realms and emotional stuff too), but I can’t. Later, I will be reminded this was a “blue moon” and a partial eclipse (no wonder I was a bit overwhelmed with energy). At the New Year’s party, the daughter of a friend brings a man from Australia, whose father associates with aborigines. He talks about how they follow the song lines: they will be walking and stop and change direction abruptly. He has been out with them. I want to hear more, but other events intervene.  2009 has been a very good year for me. What will 2010 have in store? I see the bowls getting more well-known and traveling with the concerts. Another CD and perhaps some teaching.

Dec. 29

New sequences coming in. I can’t seem to memorize them tho. And the bowls are arranged in a new way since the Rose Quartz/White Gold Alchemy and Sunstone found places.  Yet this means I jump bowls and such at times. Perhaps they will have to change again. The Tibetans are finding their way into the pieces more and more. The stem Tibetans especially have created a magic. Earlier I mentioned they were creating portals when they are played together. Their roundness echoes within them and expands out. I have decided to order the last three from a vendor and see how they sell. They are pretty amazing. The Lotus bowls which were my most high-end bowls found homes, so people want to work with these beauties and discover their richness too.

Dec. 27

Some days the mornings are a blend of this reality and something else. I do not know what this other is, but it feels like another world or another version of this world. It is delicious and fluid. Dreamlike in ways and nothing at all. No hard edges, no confirmed ideas, perceptions. Trancelike I suppose. I often feel I have a foot in this world and one in another.  

Dec. 26

The sounds have been returning at times again. No particular reason it seems. I am delighted to hear them. Perhaps I need to make more time for them.

Dec. 24

My sister’s brother-in-law and I have a great conversation about the singing bowls and how everything we know is not between our ears. He’s never thought that he knew anything any other way. And I ask how can you know faith or trust or love? These are not things one thinks. These are not rational thoughts. These qualities are beyond thought, yet we know them. He asks me if I follow a religion. I talk of how I left Catholicism because I no longer needed or wanted an intermediary with my God, and I didn’t want to be part of a group that would not allow one of my gender to be a full participant. I continue to be a Sufi however. I talk about how Sufism is a tradition of the heart, it is not limited to a religion and is not, as some say, simply the mystic side of Islam. My brother-in-law’s brother is surprised that it has so many lineages (I can only name my Chisti lineage, Rumi and the whirling dervishes’ Medlevi, and the silent Naqshabandi), and how its  roots grow into Zoroasterianism and before.

Dec. 22

I am playing the bowls one at a time.  Just picking one up and playing to hear its voice. I get to see my friend Lucinda, who has all kinds of ideas of how I might integrate the bowls and music with healing work. The University of Florida is doing a lot in this area and she offers me new insights.

Dec. 21, Solstice

I feel like I have the flu all day. It is Solstice, and I can do nothing but sleep and dream. In some ways I feel Avatar is having some lingering effects. I play the bowls just to feel them.

Dec. 20

I go to see Avatar. I know this isn’t exactly about the bowls, yet I can tell they hear sounds too. Their way of life is so integrated and comprehensive. I get to see it wearing 3D glasses — way cool. It’s a wonderful blend of dream and reality.

Dec. 19

An incredibly successful Open House today, with lots of people coming to hear the bowls. Some are coming to buy bowls, some to try bowls out, which is so much fun. Many people from the Angel House show arrive. One woman buys 6 CDs. I’ve made over 160 CDs since August, and have sold or given away about 150 of them. We’ll make another in January. Some people come at the beginning of the show and more at the end. For the performance at 5 pm, I suggest we turn out the lights and everybody just listen. A little ambient light still came in the windows, and I know where all the bowls are anyway.  And I just played. Once again, I know when the bowls are done. There were no tuning forks in this concert, perhaps they will take on a new role rather than just bringing the faeries in and such. They are so joyous when they play. One woman comes late to the evening concert and isn’t sure of the house, b/c no lights are on, but she lets the sound of the bowls guide her and joins us.

Dec. 18

Had dinner with two friends tonight.  The three of us met because of poetry, and a love of language. A year ago, I never would have guessed I would be here with singing bowls (nor could they)! My world has compeltely changed with the addition of these beings who sing to me. We acknowledged the changes that have occurred for all of us in a relatively short time and vowed we would write a 1-year and 5-year plan projection about our lives.

I have decided to go to Mystik River Retreat Center in Kentucky in January to meet with other energy practitioners, along with my friends “The Crystal Guy” Jacksons and play the bowls. I get the feeling I’m not to worry about the weather. Everything will work out. This starts to expand the geographic range of the bowls. Feels very good, like way beyond this occurrence.

Dec. 17

Started reading Sounds of Healing by Mitchell Gaynor, MD. Turns out he learned of Hazrat Inayat Khan’s work with mysticism and sound and then worked with Inayat’s son, Pir Vilayat. I was surprised and delighted, since this is my Sufi lineage. And once when I was in great despair about my faith and my connection with Sufism a tone came in that I knew without a doubt was Hazrat Inayat’s tone. Even at the time, I didn’t know how I knew this new tone I’d never heard before was his, but there was no doubt in my heart or mind, so I hung on to my faith. Then one other time, and only once since, I heard his tone again. The circumstance was not a crisis, but his tone was a joy to me.

In Gaynor’s book there is a quote from Dr. Huston Smith, a world religions expert, I’ll place here: “For the object of the spiritual quest is precisely this: to experience life as replete with overtones that tell of a reality that can be sensed but not seen, sensed but not said, heard but not explicit.” The sense of the implicit vs. explicit and the immanence and transcendance of the tones are all matters to contemplate for writing.

Dec. 16

Had a great collaborative session with Harry Pepper of Common Ground last night mixing shamanic journeying with drum and crystal bowls. Group was very interested and felt the vibrations of both. New sequences with the bowls keep emerging. And I am feeling the opening of portals more with the work. I have had the chance to spend some time alone with the bowls again as some other activities slow with the approach of the holidays.  

Dec. 13

Both cat and man are bathed in pleasant
insignificance, their eyes fixed on birds and stars.

“Searchers” by Jim Harrison, from Saving Daylight. © Copper Canyon Press, 2006. 

I play for Angel House’s Holiday Open House last night. It was delightful. People were mesmerized by the bowls. A bit different venue as people were sitting and eating while I played, but it doesn’t really matter to me. I just let the bowls take me where they will. People ask me analytical questions of the bowls, and I of the supreme analytical mind have no such answers for them. It is the Universe’s joke on me that all of that goes away for me with the bowls. And it is the Universe’s gift to me. I suggest people just sit back and relax. I mention that resonance requires both absorption and reflection, and our very cells can do that for us.

 

Dec. 12

I find this quote on someone’s web site from the French Jesuit scientist Pierre Teilhard de Chardin and offer it for your contemplation: “The day will come when, after harnessing space, the winds, the tides, and gravitation, we shall harness for God the energies of love. And on that day, for the second time in the history of the world, we shall have discovered fire.” 

Dec. 11

I talk with Harry Pepper, a professional counselor and director at the Common Ground Center in Oberlin, today about the collaborative session we are going to do next week — shamanic journeying with the bowls and drumming. He has a great idea about talking of altered states of consciousness and why humans want to go there and ways we do so. Then we’ll introduce the drum and bowls. Then he will do a drumming journey and we’ll do some processing. Then do a bowl session and after that do a combination of bowls and the drum. Should be way cool.

At one point I was going to play for a gallery opening tonight, but called today and asked if it was okay to do it another time. The owner was fine with that. I have another playing time tomorrow, and wanted the time today to do the ordinary housekeeping of life. I’ve ordered two more bowls for selling, and still contemplating another Tibetan stemmed bowl. I really like the A and C I have in this form. They have amazing qualities alone and together. These shapes and forms have some incredible capacities.

A friend sends a link to Kryon, which is a channel I have heard before and respect. He speaks about the bowls! So if you like, try it:

Go to www.kryon.com.   

Click on Site favorites

Click on free MP3 downloads  (yes). A screen of choices will come up.

Click on the one at the very bottom titled “Laguna Hills 2009”

Dec. 10

This morning I play for a group at a Retreat and Healing Center run by nuns. The group is particularly interested. Great questions. One woman is concerned tho about what her task is with the bowls and hearing the bowls. I tell her it is to relax and enjoy, nothing more. I do suggest she think of an intention for the focus for this session for herself, and she can just let the bowls do their magic. She is so sweet and so earnest. I tell the group that people have reported “results” from the bowl as long as two weeks afterwards.

I use some of the new sequences I’m exploring with this group. Later a woman who heard me only two months ago tells me I need to make another CD. She and her husband still listen to mine every night before they go to sleep, because it helps them so much. She says tho that after hearing me today, the playing has more depth and is richer. I need to make a new CD she says. (The CD was made July 28 and debuted in August.) Others too have noted how the sounds have changed and I would agree.

Later, someone asks me if I consider the bowls therapeutic. Again, I am stumped by this question. I say, “You know how we’ve moved beyond a ‘cure’ when we speak of someone’s ‘healing’? Well, I believe these bowls are beyond healing. They are moving into the sacred, communing with the Divine. Yes, that’s therapeutic and so much more.”  Someone else says, “I think an hour of the bowls would be more beneficial than an hour with a shrink.” Another person asks what it’s like to play for someone with a lot of negative energy. Again, I am stumped. I wouldn’t play unless someone requested me to play or I was already playing and they came up to listen. While I would notice the difference, I don’t feel affected by it. It’s like noticing something is blue or green when I’m with the bowls. Judgment seems to leave me, so there isn’t positive or negative energy. I have begun to wonder what it would be like to play in a prison or a detention center. I would hope it would be soothing to the residents. I think I just rec’d an insight about how the psychologist Fred in Hawaii that’s in Zero Limits healed the psychiatric patients by focusing on himself with their folders. Deena says to play the bowls to the you inside, there is no out there. I feel I am in-corporating/incarnating/embodying this more, which means it makes sense to me.

So after all this, last night I get to play for the Junior League of Cleveland at their cocktail hour for their holiday meeting. Some have remarked that the idea reminds them of Sandra Bullock in Miss Congeniality. I find this amusing and not offensive. I loved playing the bowls. I was simply the background music and only a couple of people spoke to me or took a card, but I could feel I was playing to my heart’s content, and so their hearts. What a beautiful contrast to earlier in the day and what a sweet way to close.

Dec. 9

It is springlike in temperature and the way it smells this morning. That is totally unbelievable for Cleveland, OH for December. I like miracles, so I’ll accept this one!

“According to the esoteric standpoint, music is the beginning and end of the universe. All actions and movements made in the visible and invisible world are musical.” Hazrat Inayat Khan, in The Mysticism of Sound and Music

Hazrat Inayat Khan was a Sufi mystic who lived from 1882-1927. He had been an acclaimed professional musician in India and then was instructed by his spiritual teacher to travel throughout Europe and the U.S. to bring the Sufi message of the heart to all.  His grandson Pir Zia is now head of the Sufi Order International here in the States and resides at The Abode in New Lebanon, New York.

Dec. 8

I am exploring some new sequences with the bowls. Fascinating.

Dec. 7

The plumber comes and can’t figure out the hot water tank issue, so it’s good for now. He tells me to watch for certain things and gives me a price on a new one. He sees the crystal bowls and asks about them, so I play a couple. He finds them interesting, mentions the water glasses people play. I can tell he’s fascinated. He’s an independent contractor, and he understands how we all find many things to do as part of our living, our way of life.

Dec. 6

I have to leave the jewelry show to play a concert. A friend helps out by taking over. The concert is a small group, and portals definitely open as I play. I play two times. In the second session, for the first time, one of the stem Tibetan bowls opens it. Usually a crystal bowl opens. However, all of the bowls were glad they were going to get a second time to play. I wasn’t sure I could play 40 minutes and another 50 minutes after that, but it all worked out. The one sequence that involves 5 bowls is evolving in ways that begin with 3 bowls moving to 2 or 3 others and then incorporates all 5 bowls of the sequence. I believe some other sequences are emerging too. Fascinating. When I return to pack up the jewelry shows and Tibetan bowls it turns out that someone has come by who is very interested in the Tibetan bowls and leaves a card. Who knows what will happen next!

This is St. Nicholas Day. In my own family, St. Nicholas would always leave a package for us on the front step — a family gift, like a board game (I think Monopoly showed up one year) or who could forget the Mickey Mouse rhythm band with tambourine and triangle. There would be a knock on the door and we would run down the stairs to find the package. Years later, I asked my Dad how he’d managed it. He said  he had to dive into the bushes one year, so after that he just knocked a broomstick on the basement ceiling and it worked just as well. I wish everyone a happy holiday season.

Dec. 5

Life gets more interesting. I am running out of cards as people come around to listen when I start to play the crystal bowls. Then when I stop I have to pull them with a tarp under a table to protect them. I see friends who are long-time writers who are interested and may help with some publicity of this. Several kids come by and I let them try their hand at it. Two girls who are the daughters of one of the artists I show how sound is a vibration and a wave. They think that is pretty cool. People wonder where the sound is coming from and gravitate toward it. Then we have what could have been a run-in with the bowls, and afterwards becomes a beautiful reconciliation. Amazing what happens. I feel great for all the work and what’s been happening. Usually these shows are draining, but not this time. I credit the Tai Chi, good eating and restful sleep. And I wonder how to credit the bowls. Cool.   

Dec. 4

The day is almost comical. After a day at the jewelry show, where I also play the crystal bowls and sell the Tibetans, I have to go pick up CDs of the singing bowls from my vendor on one side of town, to drive to the concert on the far end of the other side. More than 20 people have signed up! It’s a great group, many new faces. People want to purchase the Tibetan bowls I bring (which had self-selected themselves from those at the other show). Most people lay down with blankets and pillows and go deep. There is one young boy there, perhaps 11 or so, with his grandmother. He seems truly interested and connected. Playing was beautiful, very sensuous in movement, effortless. One section kept repeating a long time, and the bowls played loudly/strongly, more so than usual. Afterwards, people ask if we can make this a regular thing. I say “Yes!”

Dec. 3

I have been heads down getting ready for this jewelry show and loving the creation of new things. Then I get an email from someone who wants crystal bowls that are affordable. I would like to assist this person, and they offer me a paradox. The last thing these gem crystal bowls are is “affordable” unless you’re Oprah or Bill Gates, then they’re just pocket change. So there is an aspect associated with their purchase that is about faith or letting go and seeing what happens, what transpires and what is transformed. I can only speak of my own experience, but since I bought three bowls when I had no known income and then came home and knew I had to play them wherever whenever, the whole picture has changed. These gem crystal bowls are utter magic. I have witnessed hundreds of people’s repsonses to them and to the Tibetan bowls. No words suffice. Just say yes. And see what happens.

I get the lesson of finding dried water marks around the hot water tank. The plumber can come four days from now,which is as soon as I could do anything with the shows coming up. I believe everything will be fine for now. How interesting.

Dec. 1

I am putting stress on myself, getting ready for a jewelry show, accommodating other clients and knowing there are bowl concerts and sales to be done. I have to step back into that place of awareness, not fear or worry (which is simply a low-grade fever of fear).  However many necklaces and earrings I have made, that’s what’s made. Likewise, whatever I determine with the bowls is what is.

I have a conversation with a friend about how difficult it was a few years ago for me, many losses, many troubles and pain. It came down in the end to believing in a thread that connected me to God (or whatever one calls Source) and a belief (or perhaps only a hope) that God would have mercy and compassion for me, that I would not lose that thread and it would hold. I was pretty desperate in my feelings of loss, but I believed that much, and it was enough. It hardly seemed enough at the time. And all I could do was to ask that it be kept. My friend wonders if we all have to be taken to Ground Zero. I don’t know. I don’t even know if that was Ground Zero. But having moved through that crisis, I am glad to be on the other side. Perhaps it is a confirmation of what one is capable of. It does diminish some fear. I do not wish it for anyone. However, if you find yourself somewhere dark or you’re scared, believe there is mercy and compassion for all of us, for each of us. There is enough.

November 11, 2009

Nov. 30

I never know how these days will turn out now. I move through fear these days by staying aware and letting it be part of the process. Oh, I’m not always successful, but changes have occurred, no doubt of it.

Someone comes by to buy a bowl they had put on reserve. New bowls have arrived though, and they decide to try some out. Usually I am the one playing the Tibetan bowls or teaching people how to play them. This person has the technique tho and it is wonderful to hear the sound move out from her in a circle maybe three feet away from her and surrounding her. This is the way sound can move and encompass us and shift in the world, even the material world. The warmth with the one bowl is terrific too. She’s concerned that the bowl she is falling for is not the one she put on reserve. I tell her not to worry, just to release it. So she does. All’s well. 

Nov. 29

I receive a comment from someone watching the video who found it peaceful. I am so glad. I don’t know technically how to respond to YouTube comments, but I’ll try posting one. All I want to offer is some peace, joy, relief from whatever currently plagues someone and an opportunity to receive guidance from their own direct exerience. We should always get to live in beauty, know joy, peace and delight in the day and our lives.

Nov. 28

Some people come for the morning concert. Since most people experience the bowls in the evening/night, they find the comparison of daylight of interest.  They feel they don’t go as deep, because they aren’t as moved toward sleep. Perhaps, but they have sunlight, instead of star and moon light for influence. One of the people later tells me, she thought she heard someone outside the house speaking, but wasn’t listening enough to try to understand them. I had had the sense of one of the Tibetan bowls really giving “voice” tho I couldn’t understand it. My friend’s experience confirms mine and so for her too. I find myself loving the stemmed Tibetan bowls more and more. Fascinating. Some people come for the evening concert, and since we have some time we try fountaining the bowls. One woman gets grandfather (one of my oldest bowls) going wonderfully. She mentions the “snake” that goes round and round with the vibration. I sell three crystal bowlsto someone I’ve met through all this magic. (The first time to someone not a close friends to begin with, so all of this just continues to evolve and change. ) The concert then is magic as always.

 

Nov. 27

I can’t seem to settle today. Such a contrast to my feelings yesterday. Can’t tell if I’m being influenced by the crazed sense of shopping and those who feel they can’t spend, or if it’s the sugar and such I ate yesterday. I need to get ready for the Open House tomorrow. I am excited as it seems the Tibetan bowls debut. Tonight I play with fountaining the shallow bowls. I tried this years ago, but have set it aside. Still the one bowl has some interesting marks. One of my oldest bowls is the most cooperative, fascinating to watch the water take on a pattern. Feels like one could scrye with such an activity.

Nov. 26

For several years in a row, I’ve noticed the energies on the morning of Thanksgiving Day are calm and beautiful. They bespeak gratefulness. It is a joy to be in their presence.  

Nov. 25

It’s time to tell good friends that I have been accepted to present the singing bowls at the Universal Light Expo in October 2010 in Columbus, Ohio. This is a wonderful metaphysical show that I have participated in the last few years helping out The Crystal Guy from Cincinnati www.thecrystalguy.com who has amazing stones — call him.  I have known for a few days now, and have allowed it to mellow. To know something and hold it is a mystical practice that was presented to me a number of years ago. I am not always sure about it, as I love the joy of the initial excitement. I do see the merit however of letting good news permeate us so that perhaps less ego “Look at me. Look at me.” is involved and more of us participates in sharing.   More practice.

Nov. 24

Today, someone comes by who is interested in the crystal bowls. We start by playing them, then it seems we need to work on tecchnique. Nothing is better for that than the Tibetans! They have their own personalities and learning to play them is the way to become comfortable playing any bowl. Luckily, I have a few who are easy to play. So she gets skillful with one, then I give her another and finally, one of my more “temperamental” ones. Then we return to the crystal bowls. The crystal bowls are easy to play, but you can get the technique down with the Tibetans. She has a great sense of the sound, and it is fun to be part of someone’s exploration.

She asks if I’ve considered playing with someone else. I actually had a kid ask the same question at my first concert in a public library. What the kid really wanted to know was would she be allowed to play the bowls. When I told her she could, she pulled her fists and elbows down toward her body in that victory way, exclaiming “Yes!!” Now, I ponder it again. My response this time is that most people can’t play the variety of Tibetans, so I would need to play the Tibetans, and I love playing the crystal bowls so much that it would be hard not to do that as well. But it sounds really nice this idea. So maybe I will. It’s all possible.

 

Nov. 23

These days are filled. I receive new soudn files for some bowls, and two are definite “yesses.” With confirmation of shipments, possibilities of new opportunities, getting ready for shows/sales, the days speed by. I am grateful for all of this new enterprise.

 

Nov. 22

I cannot pass this day without thinking of President Kennedy’s assassination. Some of you reading this were not born yet, but those of you who remember, we remember. So I always take a pause and remember how we had great hopes and dreams, and how some of them have come to pass and others are still coming into being.

This afternoon, I play at a nursing home. A group of nine gathers, and they are interested and animated. I play and they enjoy it. I take a crystal bowl around for them to feel the vibration and then I place a Tibetan on their hands and play. I love this interaction. One resident rewards me with a whirlygig he makes out of pop cans. It is pick and gold and just the kind of thing I enjoy.  At the end, another man asks me if the bowls help those with autism. I don’t know. It is clear this has touched his life, so I sit down and ask him. He tells me his story about a “goddaughter” with two such children. He is close to tears, but a man of his generation would not cry. I let him pause. I can listen. All he needs is someone to listen. Just someone to listen.

I  am buying more bowls with someone sending me sound files. One is not for my clients and yet is on my wavelength. I don’t need another bowl, so I ask if there are others. I get fearful as I make the request, b/c I don’t want to create bad feelings nor diminsh the effort that has been made. I am still learning how to let people know my feelings about things without getting scared about doing it. Definitely not comfortable.  

Nov. 21

I play for another meditation group as a private session. One woman starts crying as I play a few introductory notes with the bowls. She is surprised by her response. Emotional response is one I have seen with others. It seems so cleansing to me. The hostess had put out tissues, because she was sure she would cry. Several people lay down, which I believe is the best way to experience the bowls — totally relaxed. I play for almost an hour. The bowls just keep going, but always when they are done, they finish. Some people are surprised that I regard these as living beings. One person has a real “ah ha” moment about that in this group. Up until now that person had not understood the livingness in so-called inanimate objects, now they got it. These bowls are truly amazing. Their voices give me voice. Me, who has written most of my life, has often been outspoken, who does presentations, etc. I get to have a real voice with these bowls. Three of the Tibetan bowls go to new homes. Wow, how lovely is that!

 

Nov. 20

I have tea and homemade scones with a wonderful older woman. We exchange stories — me about the bowls and her about angels and other metaphysical phenonema that she can’t tell most people about or they’ll think she’s crazy. We’re both grateful to have been introduced by a mutual friend. She sends me off with the leftover scones and an herbal potpurri she’s made. The scones feel so nourishing, made as they have been, with care and love.

A woman contacts me who’ was at a concert has fallen in love with the crystal bowls as much as I did. She wants to buy some and maybe even become a distributor. She hasn’t really gotten the chance to play them tho. So I invite her over to explore and experience.

Tonight I go play for a yacht club! I never know where the bowls will take me. It’s fun. A group of both sailors and power boaters, and in Cleveland, this is a pretty middle class group. I only get to play for 10 minutes what with all the questions to answer, but they enjoy it. For the third time, someone remarks on how watching me play looks like I’m in a dance.

Nov. 19

A new sequence with the bowls comes. They are becoming more complex. Whereas before there might be two or three bowls in harmony and repeats. Now it’s five bowls or, as in this one , five bowls but repeats within the pattern before it starts again.

Also another set of bowls have arrived with a sweet little one for me. They are nice bowls and will sell well. I am grateful to have found such wonderful suppliers.

I have a session with Matt of www.truedivinenature.com . I highly recommend his work. We move into a state of awareness, where a great sense of freedom occurs. I watch as some part of my being resists, probably my ego b/c with this freedom no sense of control exists. Everything is available as a choice – oh look isn’t that lovely, oh that too – not a judgment or constraint.  It’s as if all consequences will continue to unfold as more choices and more spaciousness. The spaciousness is unbelievable. Matt and I have worked together over the past four years or so, and this session concludes a six-session “retreat.” He is a gifted guide with a sense of humor that I enjoy. I am grateful to have made his acquaintance on this path.

Nov. 18

I have nothing new for the developmentally disabled adults I work with on Weds.  at a local adult activty center. I bring materials to make rattles again and the Tibetan bowls willing to come. I am not sure I am doing any good for these people. When I first played the crystal bowls, they did not respond like others. Bev says the wavelength isn’t wide enough. They do enjoy playing the Tibetans tho. It’s clear they want to be a part of something, not just spectators.  I’ve come to accept when I don’t know whether what I do benefits people in other situations, so that lesson returns in another form here as well.  Interestingly, it’s like being on the other side of the equation. I’ve wanted to let “the tones” know that I receive them,  and now I’m like “the tones.” I want to communicate with these folks and am not sure if I am. The tones weren’t worried about it tho. They came anyway.

These days are full. I hold my second public concert where I pay for the space. The first was this summer where I split the entrance fee with Loganberry Books. Three people come tonight, and three who thought they might don’t make it. I wasn’t sure what to expect in terms of turnout. It’s still great. It’s clear to me that I am willing to play to any number of people. All three tell of wonderful experiences and how relaxing it is. Two of them brought sleeping bags.

Nov. 17

Why am I exploring sound? The question returns to me since I am such a visual person and a word person. Because sound found me. I didn’t ask for it. It arrived. And I believe you make a guest welcome, even if it is a stranger. You never know who it is. So this exploration is a time to become familiar with what I do not know and to ask others to join me or help in whatever ways they know.

I play tonight at a private party that is very receptive to the bowls. People feel fairies, the vibrations, the joy that can come from this music.

Nov. 16

I go to Terra Vista Studio to scope out space for me and the bowls for the Holiday Sale — Dec 4-6. We figure out a way to be near the entrance. I play a little for them, but these are smaller bowls and then the blower kicks in! Still they could hear them just before that and agree they are beautiful.

The kyeezee arrives! This is a metal gong from Burma, sort of in the shape of a triangle and looking like either a hat or a seated Buddha (reminds me of the Little Prince’s picture of a snake that ate an elephant, not a hat after all). It has amazing sound whirling around as it does.

Later, one of my old familiar sounds occurs as I get ready for bed. It sounds similar to the “everything’s fine. all safe.” tone, but doesn’t come in at an angle. I have stayed up late and am somewhat dissatisfied with some things. I ask what it has to tell me. Then just get quiet for a while. As I drift off to sleep I have visions of being eye level and very small with amazing Hindu or Buddhist brass sculptures. I have been listening to Krishna Das kirtans as well as playing with the bowls and now the kyeezee. Have they brought me this vision?

Nov. 15

The yoga studio session was amazing. People went deep into their postures and selves. I speak with one woman later who resonated with the Tibetan bowls but not the crystal bowls. I will continue to listen for more information on this. She said she does well with going into silence, so it certainly doesn’t seem to be the need for a busy mind. The Tibetans were clearly made with intention, so she may be matching up with that. Interesting.

In the afternoon I played in Oberlin at an art gallery show. People enjoyed it. The sound moved through the rooms and people tried to locate it. Spoke with various people about the bowls. Some had fun trying their hand at. One young man in particular was captured by it. Gave out lots of business cards. In these settings I sometimes lose myself for short periods, but I must stay more aware so that people don’t bump into the bowls, since they and I are all on the floor. Also people want to talk, and I enjoy sharing the information. It does always seem to bless a place. Like incense.

Nov. 14

Last night I play a couple of bowls for friends who are not into all things metaphysical. They are surprised by how relaxing and beautiful the sounds are. They can understand why I have been captivated. Tonight, I play at a yoga studio.

Nov. 13

I spent most of yesterday building a mailing list. All part of the work. Then I deleted it with one click. Rebuilt it and finally found where it had landed in my Inbox! Technology. Did get a gig with the Senior Center for Valentine’s Day. Fun. Today I receive this

Guidance for the Day

Trust my little one. The world is not so big or complex, but its wonder is. Big or little, what does it matter? You flow through on the river or in it. Fly or swim. Feel yourself carried. You know a body floats, not sink. This is you. Spread your arms. What is there to fall to? You are supported. Always. The cosmos is so vast. Your breath is just as everlasting.  No worries, sweet one. Wipe the lines from your brow. Widen your smile. Join us. Our arms too are open. Come.

Nov. 12

The bowls arrive this afternoon! Now, I have some less expensive ones. I am pleased, but one is lacquered shiny. I will ask to be told if any are lacquered beforehand. A couple have also been lathed clean. I am always sorry to see the bowls treated this way, even though it is done with the intention to make them more presentable I wish they would allow them their birth voice. And who am I to say that is ever lost? So I shift gears and tell them how beautiful they are and make them feel welcome. They all want a bath! So I start bathing them. I want to prepare some for my friend who’s requested a less expensive bowl and now I have three to offer her. I meet her for dinner and she is pleased with the bowls and finds one that chooses her. It was my first hit for her and then another presented itself, and I took the third just for a selection, although we both knew it wasn’t that one.

 

Nov. 11

I wait all day for the bowls and when I go to the Post Office to mail something I realize it is Veterans Day and there will be no delivery. Tonight though Catherine and I do a yoga session with the bowls as a sort of rehearsal and tuning for us. It’s amazing. I do an opening meditation with the bowls, then join the class. I can feel my body breathe and elongate. The bowls seem to enhance it even tho they are no longer playing. I can also tell I am not fully balanced as I do warrior pose. I don’t yoga much, usually Tai Chi and Qi Gong, so it is fun to try this stretching and flexibility. I return to the bowls at the end. As usual people don’t want to move when the bowls start playing. They remain in these wonderful open-heart postures, well-supported. One of the Tibetans is the last to play, not usual, but they are blending more and more with the crystal bowls.

Nov. 10

I’m very excited. New bowls will be arriving for sale soon.

Nov. 8

I decide to try the skills I learned with Deena on one of my Tibetan bowls that sounds ring-ey and high. It’s one I intend to sell. I generally unpack them and make them comfortable, but try not to get too involved with them as I am afraid of falling in love with them and not being able to sell them. I had also wished not to influence them before handing them on. All nonsense. The bowls will know where to go and I don’t need to hold such beliefs. This is sort of taking down veils to see what’s behind that? what’s behind that? what’s behind that?   Itry my hand at tuning this one, and it works. It sounds more mellow and rounded and warm. (I think it can get even better, but I am content for right now.)

I also find another site on the web www.sacredsingingbowls.com and end up talking to the owner Gordon Kuhne about the kyeezee he has on the site. When I hear it, I know it from somewhere. So I order one. He has some beautiful bowls too. We get to talk about consciousness and sound and again I feel connected in an entirely different geographic place with another who is pursuing this mystery and miracle.

Nov. 7

Last night I did a private home session with the bowls and I am asked again if I consider this healing work. I say that healings both physical and emotional have been ascribed to the work. However, I feel the word “healing” is limited, and the bowls are anything but limited. I believe we are comingling with the Divine with the bowls. I am in love with the bowls and when people hear the bowls they enter love as well. To be in love is to be in connection with the Divine or Oneness, there is no separation. We are transformed from the individual to the unity.

Healing implies something was wrong or broken or wounded — insufficient in some manner. We are none of those things. Even when we don’t feel well or relationships are “off,” we are not limited. So we need to continue to re-attune to that limitless-ness. These bowls provide an attunement to that potent potentiality in all of us.  

Nov. 6

A friend asks if I can find some less expensive bowls as they would like to begin with one and trust my selection, but can’t afford a $100+ bowl. I had not found a source I liked that was consistent, but the next night I go online and discover a new vendor with bowls that are affordable. I buy several and then discuss a few others with him and buy some more. I am pretty amazed that it happens like this, but it does. The Universe does want to answer our intentions.

 We have been given spirit engaged in a body in the heart of each of us. We have incarnated. Christ, Buddha and many others show us that we are divine embodiment. They realized it and could “show”. We too have that ability. No limits. No limits. Only freedom.

Nov. 5

I asked for Guidance for the Day, one that I could post. Here’s the  guidance:

It’s easy to get bogged down in the details of the day. Try to step back at various times. Maybe when you sit down for lunch or before or after a phone call, and reflect on something beautiful or wonderful to you — your child or partner, a piece of art, the Divine, a tree or flower. Consider it a moment of inspiration and expansion.

You are no longer limited to circumstances or things, you are integral to the rest of Creation to all of Creation — a pretty magnificent role. Think of kaleidoscopes, how when one piece shifts as you turn the viewer, everything changes in design and color. You are just like that, shifting the pattern of the Universe and you are just as beautiful.

Nov. 4

The web site is up! Yay! It’s very odd, I can feel I am  public now. I can actually feel other people “touching” — how interesting. I’m curious to see whether people have questions, are interested, etc.  On to new adventures. In the meantime, the bowls have asked for a new configuration in how they are placed together. The rose quartz/white gold alchemy bowl and the sunstone are more integrated as a result and some new sequences are emerging. Prior to this, the rose quartz/white gold and sunstone bowls were more removed, playing only with emerald really. They are both of a more refined vibration than the other bowls so that we had to find our way into integration and harmony.  They’re mixing things up more now.

Nov. 3

Here’s how things have been working out. I went to Angel House today to meet Carol and discuss the event on Dec 12 there. I brought all the crystal bowls and some of the Tibetans to give her an intro to them. As I drove up, I thought I should have asked her to invite a few people to hear them. I bring the bowls in to meet her, and she listens and then says, “We have a group coming tonight, would you be willing to play for them, as part of a guided visualization. I say sure. It’s 5 pm, and they’ll come around 7. So we get some Chinese takeout. Tina arrives, who is going to do the meditation and shamanic journey with Carol. Carol explains about the bowls.  Tina’s game for it, so we go ahead. The group arrives and Tina does the guided meditation while I play the bowls. We end that and when it’s time to do the shamanic journey, Carol asks the group if they would like to do it to the bowls or drums. The group requests the bowls and off we go again. People talked about seeing colors, taking a journey, meeting a guide, and seeming to go to sleep, but not be asleep. We all had a great time, with the willingness to be spontaneous. Who knows what adventure is next for the bowls?!

Nov. 2 – All Soul’s Day

I continue to be given lots of confirmation to move forward with this work. People express to me what they receive from the sessions. People refer me to others. They join my mailing list. A bus driver gives me testimony to have heart and trust when I am the only passenger late at night. One engagment doesn’t work out and within minutes (literally 30 minutes one day) I am gifted with another opportunity. Unexpected venues arise — a Rotary luncheon that was great fun, a yacht club(?!). Who knows what will arrive next. I am given new insights when I play. So much feels guided and right. I have never felt like this in my work before. Most would say I am taking risks. When I stop and think about it, look at it from a certain perspective I would agree. But when I am in the flow of it, it seems so well-guided and supported that I have no worries at all. Financially even, this enterprise is developing. I am being en-couraged by many. I have all of you to thank. Thank you. Thank you truly and deeply. You make this possible as much as I do.  I am no stranger to work in many forms. I have been employed by businesses and then doing my own communications consulting for corporations for 17 years. I have also been a professional metalsmith, a poet, artist, mystic and dreamer. Somehow the sounds and bowls have created something different for me. They have coalesced my spiritual, artistic/poetic side with harmonies I would never have dreamed could be so beautiful and moving. I am offered: “Don’tstruggle so much with yourself. Take what you learn from the bowls. Harmonize. Joy, joy, joy.

November 11, 2009

Oct. 31

I play the bowls for my Sufi group as part of opening the day of Retreat. I am honored and humbled. The bowls are clearly singing and enjoying themselves, yet not all of them play, which is a surprise, nor do the tuning forks. The sounds do transport one. People later tell me how much they enjoyed it. They ask me, if it’s scripted or improvised. I say “it’s guided.” Totally guided. I usually know the first bowl I’m going to play and only the first bowl. And then it unfolds from there. Certain sequences will come up that are known to me, but in what order or when in the program is all a mystery and exploration. The programs evolve because of both me and the group I’m playing for — where we are on all levels and dimensions. I was asked to play again after lunch for 10-15 minutes. The bowls always seem willing to accommodate time when the request is made. So I asked them. As I played this second time, a new and complex sequence involving 6 bowls came through, and then a single Tibetan stepped forth and at the end that’s all I played. Later, people told me that the second time, even though shorter, was more profound than the first. I believe it was the state we had all entered into by that time in the Retreat. The bowls were just re-sounding it for us. As one person noted to me about me, “you’re just in love.”  True enough.

 

Oct. 30

I play the bowls for a wonderful event at the Optimal Wellness Center. I get lost in the sounds. A new sequence (or old) of Grandfather, Grandmother and Indium shows up. One participant was doing yoga poses at times, felt compelled to do so. Fine by me, the bowls guide me. Nicole Tuzzio of the Good ‘N Raw Cafe  prepares some delicious juices for us before we begin. Then after the program, she has these delectable little treats of all different kinds — fig, cacao, and one red/orange one, I’m still trying to discern. On another note, I’ve also placed another order for antique singing bowls, which will arrive next week. They are truly magical.

Oct. 29

Last night as I did some tuning with an imaginary bowl, sound came to me like an atmosphere, a breeze you might say. I’ve never had that happen before — sound arriving, “showing up” because I was playing. I was making no sound with the imaginary bowl, simply playing it in my “mind” and feeling it deeply in my heart, when the sound came to me. I wasn’t sending any physical sound, yet it wanted to come and be present. The tone was like one the crystal bowls would play — that expansive quality, not a single note per se.

The experience is similar to when I used to just sit and wait and listen for the tones to come. Now, it seems I may be calling to them in a new way. Perhaps they’re being more responsive as I become more active withthem. I’ll continue to listen.

October 25

For the first time, I hear a musical chord. Or at least that’s what I think it is. The tone is different than others. Richer, fuller and seems composed of more than one note, yet all sounding together. I hear it as though it’s far away. It may be what woke me up. At first I think it may be a train, but it’s not that. Then I hope to hear it again, and there it is. Definitely not a train whistle, and so beautiful — one long velvety chord. And I see an electric purple line in my mind with two spheres at either end and it glows purple when the sound starts.   

October 24

We have the Artists Open House today and I play the bowls throughout. The gem crystal bowls are so beautiful in color and sound they catch everyone’s eye. One person came in and said that he had a Tibetan bowl that just sat on the shelf. I was playing one of the Tibetans at the time. It doesn’t matter to me what people think of the bowls or what they say. I am so in love with the relationship I have with them, people’s comments just bypass me. He sat down, and I continued playing gently. Suddenly he looked startled, “Oh, you just gave me a diagrammatic drawing of how they work. It comes from the heart.” I was glad he could see it since I don’t, but I just continued to play. People having foot massages had the additional benefit of the bowls.

October 19

Leaving Ithaca and a fantastic workshop with energy “tuner” Deena Spear. After playing the bowls yesterday I felt a confirmation for all that I’m doing. It is all possible, and I have no idea what that means. That I am to be based in Cleveland, Ohio for the time being is undeniable. That I may have more than one base is likely. To be in the countryside again has been so good. The sense of calm it offers with fields and trees. Not unlike where I grew up.

October 18

I go for a long walk first thing and all kinds of birds and deer are out. Then in the workshop, I get to play the bowls to tune the violins. First, I play the beautiful Tibetan dharma. I think the intention became a healing for me rather than the violin, because as I played my heart opened and then my consciousness opened into a completely new space. The violin sounded better too. Then I played the gem crystal Grandfather bowl, which was beautiful and deep but did not sustain like it can. Then I played Grandmother. Each time the violin improved. I thought the violin was great. Then Deena said “You don’t have the bowl you need for this violin. You’ll have to imagine it. Play that one.” I didn’t hesitate. I could sense the bowl, held the intention and went around it about 5 times. I knew I was done in about 2-3 times around, I just wanted to play it a bit more. I noted that I had played it longer than necessary for the tuning and Deena said that was true. Then I asked if I had also been influencing the violinist. She said no, she maintained neutrality when a tuning was occurring.

Afterward, one person came up to tell me that he could hear and see it when I began with the imaginary bowl and when I ended. Another told me how a pillar of light had occurred. Someone else said she could tell it had blessed/tuned the land. 

October 17

Our hostess Shirley at the B&B doesn’t know what to serve the 3 of us at Deena’s workshop. One can’t eat wheat, the other dairy, and none of us eat meat.  She is Chinese, but could be a Jewish or Italian mother — she wants us to eat. So, she gets up at 5 and makes this amazing vegan stew of black beans and potatoes and squash. Then she decides that is not enough, so she steams vegies with a ginger sauce and drapes them over rice. She also offers these special Chinese bakery delicacies of lotus seed and bean cake with a cooked egg-yolk like the moon in the center of one.

Turns out to be a good thing as we don’t eat until late in the afternoon. We learn about tuning and the Hebrew alphabet in a very full day of working with sound.

The portrait done in sepia that caught my attention is of Michael the Archangel. No wonder! The man who drew it in pixels is in the group. We also have a cellist who repairs violins and has worked with Deena on some. A pilot. A physician. Several vets. A retired podiatrist. A chiropractor or two. A woman studying for seminary. Another who taught design at a university and works with shamans in Peru. Another prof. Lots of diverse interests.

October 16

How exciting I’m at Deena’s workshop on sound. Fascinating group of people. Lots of warmth. I was energized just entering the room. My whole body was humming. That’s a good beginning.

October 14

I play for another library at noon. As I enter I follow a woman whose arms are filled with doughnut holes and cookies. I ask if these are for the singing bowls program. She says, “Yes. We have lots more coming than we expected.” I think about 30 people show up, which is what I would anticipate.

Lots of questions before I begin. I show them how sound has form and can be shifted with our hands. It’s an interested group with a fair amount of seniors and some folks I know. The playing is wonderful. Afterward, people come up, including a friend I haven’t seen in a long time. People buy CDs, sign up on the mailing list. Wow!

 October 13

I play at the Chagrin Falls library and we have 30 people. The library is thrilled by the turnout. It’s evening so I put the lights low so that people can sit back and relax. I play for them and afterwards some people want to try their hand at it. One woman starts to approach a crystal bowl with a wooden mallet. I almost shout “No!” (maybe I did shout). So I show her what to do with one of the suede mallets.  Others are playing the Tibetan ones for sale, and two people place reserves on bowls. A woman and her husband come up to hear the crystal bowls up close. I offer the bowl to the woman to play. She is too scared given the cost of them. I say, “That’s why they’re insured.” Her husband is willing to try and notes the sense of feeling the vibration to her. So she tries it, and smiles in recognition. What fun!

Sunday, October 11

Final day of Universal Light Expo in Columbus and selling stones for The Crystal Guy. I apply for a booth for next year to sell singing bowls. We see Elizabeth Tallman and she asks me to play for her meditation that day. So I do. The group is small and lovely. It’s a treat to hear Elizabeth talk of the stones. She once handed me a filmy clear Tibetan that turned out to be the consort for the smokey quartz Tibetan I had bought as my first crystal. He had always been a bit wild and powerful (very shamanic), and then he met his lady. They are a wonderful pair.

We have a great day. Gene and I play our crystal bowls for various people. We sell stones and eat some great vegan cookies. We live life large on the road.

October 10

My nephew Chris’s birthday. He’s 30, married, with a kid, a new home and farther away than when he was growing up. I always remember him as a baby on this day. He is a terrific young man. Me, his wacky aunt is at a metaphysical fair, selling crystals. My family doesn’t know what to make of all this, but they accept it, which is really gracious of them.

The day just rolls! We sell stones, stones, stones. Then we get to go out for one of our famous Lindy’s dinners. The food is delicious.

I talk with a woman about swimming with the dolphins in Bimini and Hawaii. Would love to do that again.

October 9 

 Lorna and I roll into Columbus and head for our favorite Zen Cha tea place. I get date and longan tea, which is sweet and delicious in a glass pot with its own little candle burner underneath. I have these rice rolled pyramids that are tasty and a ginger carrot soup. Our server is a woman from New Zealand with streaked red hair and brilliant green feathers she’s placed in it. I doubt I could pull that off, but it is so fun to see it in someone who can and enjoys it. 

We go to the expo hall and help set up for the show. Later, we head out to dinner and then I play my bowls for the group in Barb & Gene’s room. Gene plays his new bowl. And I think of how this all began in Tucson in January, when they were out there too. Circling, circling.

October 7

Played at Common Ground out in Oberlin tonight. Two-and- half-hour session. Longest program so far. We do a breathing exercise to get grounded and connect with the earth. I pass crystals around that the bowls are made of so people can feel the vibration and see if they can match it with the bowl of that gem. For that’s how I perceive the bowls. They give voice to the stones they are made of , their consciousness and more. I tell how I hear tones and how I came to the bowls. We talk about the musical notes associated with the chakras and howthe gem crystal bowls take that into another dimension. For example, my Emerald bowl is an E (solar plexus) yet it plays to the heart. The ruby bowl is a B (crown chakra). Ruby is a root chakra stone and the sound is very grounded in this bowl, so you can feel it throughout your body. We end and people want to talk. One person even buys a Tibetan bowl right then. People offer me opportunities and suggestions for venues. Wonderful night.

 October 6

If I truly believed I am Divine then I would invest each act, no matter how big or small, with the feeling and belief that this is a moment of Creation. Because it is.

At writing class today, I draw the card: “Treat writing as an act of reverence.”  Bharati Mukherjee   

There are no coincidences.

October 5

Guidance for the Day:  Don’t worry. It is a waste of time. It is a form of anticipatory fear. This is not an aspect of living that is helpful in any way. It simply draws the motive (intent) away from action and makes it lie fallow. It is deceptive, in that worry lets you think, even believe, that you are preparing for “the worst case scenario” or some thing. When, in fact, you are simply feeding delusions that may or may not occur. There is no reason to feed these delusions. You could just as well buy an ice cream for yourself.

October 2

Sometimes celestial beings grace me with insights that seem more universal than personal. I’ll share those. Here’s one:

Guidance for the Day – Beauty. Remember all the beauty in your day. See beauty everywhere. This is youur guidance. Never relenquish beauty for a safe substitute. Join with beauty. You are beauty. See yourself this way.

November 11, 2009

September 30

Playing the gem crystal bowls for the developmentally disabled adults doesn’t work the way it does with “regular” folks. They don’t relax and get calm.  Bev at the Crystal Room has told me it’s because the sine wave isn’t big enough. So I have come up with an alternative. Since is the intention is to provide an enjoyable time, I am going to let them play the Tibetans and see what happens.

They love it. They make all kinds of noise. Reggie gives up his red lunch bag to play percussion. Julius has a great sense of rhythm and gives me a big hug at the end. Florence just loves to play. She’s a good sport all around. Even Nicole who is in a motorized chair and can only wave one hand seems engaged and happy.

The next group comes in. Laura goes along with it and seems to trust me. Cynthia takes a chance, petite as she is. She’s timid at first, but can’t seem to help herself enjoying making noise. She surprises herself with how much she likes it. She kind of giggles and then plays some more. Lisa, more highly functional, experiments with techniques.

Clearly, these people have loved playing the bowls. These revered bowls that I honor seem liberated. I wasn’t sure how it would be to have people banging on them (I don’t let that happen usually, because they deserve respect.) However, no longer are they only sacred, they incorporate the joy from these people. The bowls have opened.

 

Sept 9

Guidance for the Day:

Music for you is your entrance; just as silence is. You have known stillness a long time. It is always within you. A thread, a column from you to the divine and rooted in earth. It is a life force — this vibration of a refined magnitude.

We rejoice in your access of it. For stillness is a vehicle to assist you in your journey.

Listening requires awareness. It requires receiving and allowing; processing but no judgment for ultimate freedom.

Processing from listening can also lead to action and that requires choices, but not necessarily judgments. For choices can change.

Do you see how one becomes less anxious with such realizations? Choices are mutable, not fixed, not concrete hard. You are learning flow and flexibility in this silence and in this music.

 

Sept 5

The message comes: “It is the space between the notes that makes the music. ”

In a workshop at LilyDale the woman sitting next to me lives in Cleveland too and may be a great contact for programs with the bowls!

Sept 4

I play for the yoga and chakra workshop at LilyDale. I play a beginning intro meditation with my bowls that the group loves and I play again over some of the lunch hour. I sell 6 CDS. During the workshop, I play both the big quartz bowls Jan has brought that relate specifically to chakra points and mine when it seems appropriate. The gem crystal bowls are more multi-dimensional in tone than the single quartz bowls. As a result, sometimes the gem crystal in the bowl relates more to the chakra than its musical note. 

Sept 3

I’ve ordered a Lotus bowl from Bodhisattva. They are becoming so rare. Yet, I feel another bowl is to accompany it. I talk with Shakti. I have seen one on their site, but it is not quite right for some reason, although it sounds beautifully. She finds another one and then a third which I can tell she thinks is lovely. I can tell it is not mine. Then she realizes it will complete a set she has been working on and starts getting apologetic. No need I say, it wasn’t mine. The next day she finds one more, which is it. She has also assembled some bowls for me to sell. So now I am a retailer!

Today too, Jan and Judi and I drive to LilyDale where they will hold a workshop tomorrow. LilyDale, a spiritualist community, is looking better these days. Maybe the last few years have been good to it.

Sept. 2

Concert at Loganberry Books tonight. We had 25+ people. My first concert with ticket sales! I play for 40 minutes, when I offer a break for people, few want to move. They want to stay with the sound, the energy. So I play again. The Tibetan bowls are starting to change with how they relate to the crystal bowls, integrating more, less differentiation.

A two-part tone comes in, almost pulse-like. Daaaaahhhhhh-dooooo. Comes in, goes out. Like the breath, a pulse. Seems wider then more narrow, wider again then narrow. They’re always changing.