This week was amazing – a memorable one in my life. I must have done something pretty good in previous lifetimes! – I got to see Pt. Ravi Shankar play live in concert. and not just see and hear him, but do so sitting in the front row. It was something I would never have imagined to happen.
Seeing him play was witnessing the intimacy between a musician and his music. the intimacy, the connection, the joy. Rumi says in his poem called ‘fierce courtesy’:
‘The connection to the Friend
is secret and very fragile.
The image of that friendship
is how you love, the grace
and delicacy, the subtle talking
together, in full prostration,
outside of time.’
Witnessing this friendship is a gift that softens the heart. and time stops. in certain moments of his playing Khamaj, something happened in my heart for which there are no words. There seemed to be such joy in his being as if he was but an element through which divine grace in the form of music was happening. you knew there were no words to describe the experience, when a 7 year old behind me came out in the front and clapped voraciously 🙂 there are no words to describe music!
intimacy is such a gift. this intimacy with ourselves, with what passes through us, from us, to us…it is a beautiful thing worth practicing for. when we can know our thoughts, our ideas, our physical sensations, our emotions first-hand, when we can sit there on the front seat and be with our experiences in life, we go beyond being present. therein is grace and beauty. compassion. creation. As a wonderful friend of mine reminded me, we create in every moment, when we participate and connect to our experience. we may not create like Pt. Ravi Shankar, but we can experience that joy nevertheless 🙂
may we have the profound compassion needed to show up for what is, accept and embrace things as they are.
with metta, S.