It’s about the singing, and it’s not about the singing…

We are in a new era of awareness, a new way of being that is slowly coming to light and part of this new way I feel is for us to come to understand sound and singing in a whole new way.  We need to wake up to the potential of the voice and it’s powerful healing capacity. Period.  We know it’s good to sing in a choir and there are lots of great benefits that our bodies get from that but what, sing in a choir?  Yoga has introduced some people to toning, and having taught singing to yogis in training, the same beliefs and fears are also in this world, only more hidden.

Singing has been about how well you can sing, or not sing and not about the simple fact that everyone has a voice that can access the whole body in a very healing way through the voice.  The belief seems to be that some people can sing and some people can’t and if I don’t think I can then I’d better leave it to those who can.  There are the inner and outer critics in and around us which closes down our ability to access a profound beauty and vulnerability that our voice has access to.  This inner criticizing has also shut down the natural expression of the voice and its free and playful healing nature.

“Oh you teach people to sing, how nice for you. That’s so sweet.” Singing is something you get to do if you are a child or retired or if you are really special you sing in front of people and get to offer your ‘gift’.   Hearing a powerful singer connect to their emotions through their voice is incredibly beautiful and moving for anyone who hears it, noone can deny the power of this expression of the voice.  However it has simply been the only point of singing for most of us in this part of the world and not the prayer of love that is standing before us all.

Even if you are singing the critic’s, the pleaser’s and the tyrants inside of us stop any enjoyment form going on anyway. Apparently enjoying our voices is some kind of crime that is punishable by well, us and it seems everyone has an opinion about your voice. The simple idea of enjoying the sound of my voice and how it feels inside of my body has not been embraced.  The benefits of how the voice moves the energy inside of us and causes us to feel and to connect with ourselves are bountiful.  Over the years yoga has really been established for its healing benefits and immense importance in our well being.  I believe that in the near future sound and singing will lead the way in the well being movement as the ultimate way to connect to mind, body and spirit.

The disconnection and judgement that we have on our voices along with the old paradigm of ‘I can sing so the only option I have is to sing publicly or join a choir’,  has got to change because we are MISSING THE POINT ENTIRELY!! The healing and penetrative powers of your voice, and I mean everyone’s voice is unmatched.  It has the potential in one note to connect you to your wholeness in a way that seems too easy for it to be real.  The power of your attention and your mind has this capacity yes, but most often we don’t have the awareness of what it actually feels like to connect this deeply with ourselves and singing is the direct experience of ourselves and the love and beauty that we actually are. It is this inner joy reflected outwards.

Singing is about our ability to receive.  To be able to allow something to penetrate us and move and shake us, and singing does this if we allow it.  To be able to receive this joy and beauty our voice reveals for ourselves, and not think that our voices are to impress others or to make your parents proud, finally.  It is for my overall well being that I sing and enjoy the benefits that it brings me.

Singing in the way I am speaking can bring about an instant connection of well being if we could allow it.  And what it can do to our nervous systems in bringing a whole new concept of what rest means inside is again, unmatched.  Your healing voice in one note acts like an authority inside of you that sends ripples throughout your whole being that say’s, ‘REST’.  Not unlike a ripple on water it continues to ripple out a healing affect of rest and relaxation throughout your whole body that you did! Not a massage therapist or another sort of guru but you, the healing sound of your own voice along with an intention of trusting something greater.  With the deep rest also comes an aliveness in the form of a subtle vibration that is the life force playing inside of you.  Intentional singing strengthens this field that is alive in and around us and we can play it with the sound of our voice. If you sing it, it will come.  (sorry I had to :o)

The voice is indeed powerful but it also needs to be revealed to itself and taken seriously because it has so many old beliefs on it that stops it from being touched at all.  It’s all that ‘I hate the sound of my own voice stuff’, that again completely misses the mark!

Your Authentic Voice, uncovered to reveal the beauty of who you are.  In one note you can connect to your wholeness like never before.  It’s not about singing, and it is about singing.  It’s about the impact and the resonating affect of this one note that changes everything about what you believe.  It brings a whole new paradigm of what is possible not only with the sound of your voice and its potential but your own capacity to grow and let go of what you have come to believe about yourself, which is false.  So false.  We are terrified of the sound of our own voice for reasons that don’t make sense anymore and cannot hold up to the light of our awareness anymore.  It’s not our voices we are really afraid of, it’s who we are and what we are capable of.  That’s what we are afraid of and our voices tap into this potential so powerfully that we put it away and hide it from the light of day.  Because it will CHANGE YOU to touch this potential.

We need to develop a tolerance for our own light and this light can be accessed by the voice.  Like one pure drop of healing water, one drop of a note into your entire willing being can open you to who you are. For a moment.  We have grown so accustomed to deflecting ourselves that we need to begin to build this muscle of sound and vibration steadily and slowly for it to really work in us in a lasting way.  For us to really the receive the healing gifts of ourselves we must burn through what is in the way.  I believe that the power of the healing voice is a conduit and the authority that can access our potential in a instant and for an eternity.

 

Your First ‘Impression’

There's a wayYou are young, eager, impressionable and ready to learn!  You are excited to sing, to dance, to paint, to create something, anything! And you want to share this with everyone!  Enthusiasm is pouring out of you onto your parents and teachers.  ‘Look at what I did’, ‘look at what I can do!.’  Enter the Teachers, enter the adults.  Teachers and adults make huge impressions upon us when we are young and we hang on every word they say.  They are God.  Our early years in school is a time when impressions stick, so if your teacher said to you in music class, ‘could you stand at the back so we can’t hear you,’ or the deadly phrase ‘could you mouth the words?’, our First Impressions are born within us and take up permanent residency status, for-ever until we have an opportunity to change that initial First impression.  This can take many years or for the majority of people it will never get change to a healthy impression of enjoyment with our singing voice or our creativity.

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These First Impressions on our young, open creative bodies do what this suggests.  They impress upon you negative, destructive thoughts into your own psyche that will keep replaying over and over in your thoughts. Thoughts such as ‘I’m not good enough’, ‘My voice sounds terrible’, or, ‘I don’t have the confidence.’  The inner critic is alive and well and has made a home in you.  The inner critic does its job and keeps you far away from that First Impression that keeps popping up over the years to remind you yet again to ‘stand at the back’, or ‘mouth the words’.

This ‘popping up’ comes in the form of hearing about a new singing group, a choir or a musical opportunity which evokes a very strong feeling inside that seems quite conflicted.  First comes the excitement of wanting to jump in and the resounding YES! I want to do that!  Shortly following the YES count me in comes the vehement NO! A representative from our First Impression reminding us to stay away, danger!  This voice reminds us to stay away from anything that might expose those initial feelings and first impressions from ‘then’.

Over the years we forget the ‘First Impression’ altogether and carry on with life like nothing happened.  We stay away from anything creative but that’s what growing up is isn’t it?  Being responsible and mature, not having what we really want, it’s part of the sacrifice.  Singing is selfish after all and not for me.  That’s just crazy talk.

Enter ‘The Authentic Voice’.  Uncover your voice and all the critical voices that hide you from your voice, your light, your joy, your creativity.  Underneath this First Impression is a profound beauty, freedom and joy that, yes, is still there, waiting for you to turn towards it to pronounce an affirmative YES, that is for me!

Over the many years that I have been teaching singing and expression I have come across the countless many that tell me their story of their First Impression.  I am always so shocked first and foremost that they were told that and also of the impact this has had on their lives.  There is a split that happens at that time that is very painful and to go near this at first can feel impossible to say the least.

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“There’s a way back and there’s a way through that doesn’t leave behind any part of you.”  A line from one of my songs that really speaks to this critical First Impression.  Brave are those who walk towards this fire to claim their stolen power and take it back.  “Fly into the flames and let it burn, and give into the space that makes you yearn.”  Indeed.

 

 

 

Authenticity…

What is the Authentic Voice?

Your Authentic Voice is what is found when everything that you think you know about yourself gets stripped away and you find that you don’t know who you are.  It is when you feel lost and alone and like you don’t have any foundation under you. Your whole world feels upside down.  That’s good. That’s a start.  It is the beginning of something that is authentically you that is trying to be birthed.  But first we must cut away from our being that which is not real and cannot withstand the light of love.   Your voice is your instrument, your body the vessel, and your spirit is shining through with its powerful authenticity that feels at once vulnerable and strong at the same time.  There is something unshakable about being in the presence of someone in their authenticity.  The difference with someone being in their ‘power’ and one being in their ‘authenticity’ is the ‘authentic’ person brushes off on you and you want to be around them, the ‘powerful’ person makes you feel less than they are.

The sound of your voice will tell you everything you need to know about where you are now, which is all we need be concerned with or bear witness to.  Your voice represents your emotional inner landscape and is a barometer of moment to moment authenticity.  There are many voices inside all of us.  Voices from different ages that appear through our voice attempting to come home like lost children looking up at others for love and acceptance, finally.  There are the voices from certain archetypes that are working their way through us transforming and evolving us, and the voices that are there to protect us that also stand before us, like a storefront.  These voices represent us for the moment and speak on our behalf, the only thing to do is to develop the awareness that this is happening.  Underneath all of these voices somewhere, is your authentic voice.

The authentic voice when it is open and free from any physical trappings or hindrances has a way to transport us for a moment out of this world and into the other.  It has the power to mediate between worlds and touches an authority from the invisible world which at first can be quite unsettling.  It can feel unsettling because who we are and what we are in those moments brings many unanswered questions with it.  It is the mystical realm that our voices visit and come back from all the wiser. Rumi say’s ‘people are going back and forth across the door sill, where the two worlds touch.’

Your authenticity is your true essence, its you with nothing of the past or the present in front of you.  It is from this place that we can truly create from but this authenticity is not for sale and has no need for productivity and placement.  If your creativity naturally flows from this state then it is in alignment with who you are, however, authenticity is not interested. At. All. In success.

We say we want this, to be authentic and to experience what its like to sing or live from this place but there are very few that are willing to go to the place that this authenticity demands.  There is too much at stake.  Our attachments to our identities of who we think we are have a huge investment in them and to say after all this time that this is not who we are is a death of sorts, and can feel like a huge failure.  This failure is also good and necessary.

Rumi say’s ‘Love comes with a knife and not some shy question, and not with fear for its reputation, I say these things dis-interestingly accept them in kind that Love is a Madman working his wild schemes.”  Indeed.