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October 5, 2008 / alunatunes

October 05- Toxic Introspection


 

Chris Brackett and Steve the Roadie at Sloss Furnance

Chris Brackett and Steve the Roadie at Sloss Furnance

“These fears that fell to my lot out of everyday stirred a hundred other fears and they stood up in me, against me and agreed among themselves, and i coundn’t get beyond them. In striving to form them, I came to work creatively on them; instead of making them into things of my will, i only gave them a life of their own which they turned against me. ” Rilke

Meditation, relaxation, Bible study, angelic understanding- whatever you wish to tag it, we are all looking for “something”.  We falsely believe the something we seek lies in outside sources; a better relationship, a more productive work day, a finer instrument, more competent bandmates, a different management company.  Not realizing we always have the answers close at hand, we shoot around like orbs in a pinball machine, constantly seeking answers in control, consumption and caustic habits. We think ONLY of ourselves. As players of instruments and writers of songs, we spend hours in introspection, turning phrases, writing melodies, crafting our particular works of art. In solitude we create, and in solitude, often, we crash.

It is good to seek answers. It is right that we should be curious and seeking individuals. The answers to our questions, after all, are all inside us.  Remarkably, if we simply quiet ourselves, we can connect the dots, quell the fear and  fill in the blanks, relaxing into a blissful state of being human. Introspection is part of our creative process, but so is relating to other humans.

Ranier Maria Rilke created his fears and those fears took on lives of their own. Often, in introspection, we stumble upon our shadow selves, our true natures and it’s hard to like every facet of our personalities. When we find ourselves on this dark path, it pays to stop, look and listen to the children playing, to soft music, to the voices of loved ones, the purr and hum of a cat.

Introspection can be toxic. Allow yourself to look inside, but recognize within the darkness you may find there, is a light like no other. Avoid hours of analysis, and self reproach and limit the hours you work in solitude. While you may not miss yourself, others do and welcome your presence in their lives and work and home.  Think outside yourself and discover the joy you bring to others, and they bring to you.

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