A word of encouragement (or not?)
September 9, 2019 at 4:08 AM #76354
Well I was contemplating the meaning of life and listening to heavy metal the other day… ok just kidding. But I was thinking (that’s dangerous, last time I thought someone almost lost a hand… jk) I was thinking about musicianship and came to an encouraging, or discouraging, realization; you will never “get there” cuz the moment you get “there” you’ll look over the hill you just climbed and realize that the next one is where “there” is. This could be discouraging, but I would look at it as encouraging. Because if you hadn’t climbed that metaphorical hill you’re currently standing on, you would have never even seen the next one. And remember, you can’t travel between one hill and the next without walking through the valley in the middle. Your knowledge is like a candle; the bigger the circle of your knowledge gets (the brighter your candle) the bigger the circle of what you don’t know gets outside it. Each new thing you learn will bring to your attention at least two things you have yet to learn. This is actually a good thing, as it means you’re learning, though it may not feel like it. So keep at it, you’ll get there, even though you’ll never get there, cuz whenever you get where the icecream truck was, it’ll already be to the next block. But even professionals, I believe, never “get there” cuz they are always learning too. The moment you decide that you’ve “made it” you’ll stop trying to learn, so just don’t. If you’ve made it this far, you’re either really bored or you’ve been reading Greek philosophy and needed to clear your head anyway, I hope this was more encouraging than discouraging, I think maybe I should start a blogSeptember 9, 2019 at 4:40 AM #76355
Encouraging!…but, maybe not in the way you might think…because it is so rewarding to see folks from the younger generation thinking and contemplating. In this case, this is not only about you as a musician, but you as a person (inseparable) , contemplating the meaning and philosophy of your life. The world needs young people like you, and young people like you give us older folks encouragement and strength! You will go far my new young friend, and your life will have meaning and be rewarding. Young people like you give us older folks hope that there is a bright future for your generation. Never stop searching for the meaning of life…your life. Thank you for sharing that, Gunnar.
September 9, 2019 at 4:43 AM #76357
- This reply was modified 11 months ago by MoonShadows.
One more thought…nothing in life is about “getting there”; it’s about the journey, IMHO. All we have is the moment, and we can only make the most of that moment in the journey.September 9, 2019 at 6:45 AM #76358
What Jim said, about what Gunnar said…and what Gunnar said. Very well put…yes, all true, guys.
There are many roads to take in life, and the ones you choose will be unending. Yet, at times you will get his with sudden realization that you have advanced beyond where you ever thought you would, but in the same second, you’ll realize you have so much further to go, further than you ever thought even existed.
Then there’s burnout…you work, work, work, struggle, try, try…then there comes a time when you’re just burnt out. But that’s kinda good for you…a time to take a break for a while. After the burn out, you usually get more enthusiastic than ever for the next round, next adventure.
Life is amazing, for those of us who aren’t engulfed in some kinda war or captivity, faced with starvation, etc. We can choose our meaningful paths and have many adventures. If I ever saw a musician, amateur or professional, who said s/ he was satisfied with his/her stage in musicianship, I would think there was something wrong with their thinking…lol. I would seriously think they just didn’t get it.September 9, 2019 at 7:23 AM #76359FrederickParticipant
“The Journey is the Destination”. A story about a Monarch Butterfly.
When I was in my late thirties I was very “spiritual”. Not “religious”, spiritual. It was a time in my life when I read lots of self-help books and was trying to get in touch with my “inner self”. One book told of “observing the observer”. The “observer” was a part of me that was in back and above me and would watch me as I hiked through the forest. There was another aspect to this in which there was yet another observer that watched the first observer. In order to sense this relationship within one’s self, a great deal of time was spent in banishing as many thoughts (the running dialogue that goes on constantly in one’s own mind) as you could, to just “still” the mind.
After countless hours and attempts at this, I finally had an experience one day while hiking on a forest trail that I knew no one else would be on. About three hours had gone by when my mind became completely quiet and the observer observing the observer caught this very spiritual moment that I will never forget. As I walked the trail a Monarch butterfly flew in front of me and directly in front of my nose. As I slowed my pace, it hovered inches away from me and flew to my nose and I swear it “kissed” me. It then hovered a little while more and flew off.
I was so grateful to have had the inner dialogue silenced enough to witness the inner peace associated with our connection in the woods that day. Those moments in life are so rare and to have actually experienced this to the level that I could understand the loving presence of such a beautiful butterfly was pure love.
The most beautiful violin music created by the world’s most creative composers pales by comparison with that very brief moment that is indelibly stamped in my “spirit”.September 9, 2019 at 7:26 AM #76360
Thanks Jim, you can thank my parents a lot for who I am today. I also have some opinions about the current American school system and kids these days, but it’s definitely not productive for me to talk about that if I can’t do anything about it. I wish there were more kids out there who were like me (I don’t mean that in a prideful way) and I think there probably is, you just don’t hear from/about them cuz they’re as sheltered as me (or more) I do enjoy contemplating deep meaningful things (especially about music) especially when I’m supposed to be doing something else ??
Yep Cricket, I think I might be slightly burnt out, but burnout for me is another person’s on fire. Ultimately, you have to either accept that you’ll never know everything you want to know or go insane trying to learn it all, but you can accept that you’ll never be perfect but still try to be, cuz if we strive for perfection, we can attain excellence! I’m not this deep and thoughtful in person lol, but most of my siblings are gone right now so I have time and mental space to pontificate on my destiny ?September 9, 2019 at 12:25 PM #76368
Mental space is a great thing….I thought that was my word…lol. I’m always saying to my husband…” I just need some mental space…” and I thought it was just my fumbling about for words. It’s a great thing and a rare thing. Especially with a houseful, hey?
Fred, I’m glad you were kissed by a monarch in the woods…lol. That’s a beautiful story.
Speaking of monarchs…I think they are having a great year, for a change. My daughter and her son are filming some that they have “brewing” on their porch and we have caterpillars galore on the milkweed out in front…we cry when we see them leave for their long journey to Mexico…part of our community, making a long trip they have to do.
Makes me cry when the hummingbirds go too…I worry about them…they have to do what they have to do.September 9, 2019 at 12:59 PM #76370FrederickParticipant
Thank you very much, Cricket. It truly was a wonderful experience. I wouldn’t ordinarily share such an inner feeling type story with anyone on a forum but I figure at my age and after all I’ve been through, it’s really a small price to pay for being thought of as crazy. 🙂September 9, 2019 at 1:06 PM #76372
Fred…for some reason, BGD is a very personable forum. Seems people here are so supportive and understanding it’s not too terrifying to say stuff…lol. I’m glad you shared it. Something about being on whatever leg of the fiddle journey ties us all together pretty well, doesn’t it? All roads lead to the same destination, possibly? The monarchs, the fiddlers, just us humans and butterflies…pushing onward together through life.September 9, 2019 at 2:15 PM #76374
Oh wow, I totally missed Fred’s post, it wasn’t there when I posted. That’s cool Fred! I don’t know anything about butterflies but it’s cool one kissed you.
Cricket my mom says mental space all the time, and I got it from her I guess (the word, not the space) I think it’s cuz BGD has so few regular forum contributors that you get to know the other people pretty well?September 9, 2019 at 4:24 PM #76383
Gunnar said: “I think it’s cuz BGD has so few regular forum contributors that you get to know the other people pretty well?”
Yes, I think that is a big part of it. I belong to a few forums, and the smaller ones….smaller amount of contributors…makes the forum more intimate, folks are more open, and you get to know one another much better.September 9, 2019 at 6:57 PM #76392JBoundsParticipant
Nobody has got there yet. Some think they do though. I don’t wanna ever stop learning. I’d be bored to tears if I did. I think , most younger people are not thinking in your way. Meaning they never stop to reflect on where they are at in the moment.
I think you are a unique person and already have some wisdom.September 10, 2019 at 4:31 AM #76405
Thanks John. I too would be bored silly if I stopped learning, actually, I don’t think it possible to stop learning whether you like it or not it’s something your brain doesSeptember 10, 2019 at 9:12 AM #76419KaeleighParticipant
Which is why you better make sure you’re learning something good ?September 10, 2019 at 9:19 AM #76420KaeleighParticipant
About there always being something else to learn, I think that’s endlessly exciting! I love the fact that I can’t exhaust the difficulties of the fiddle ?
I remember hearing Jerry Douglas (you know, the dobro player who does the transatlantic sessions) say that he practiced for eight hours a day! I I can think of very few people who are more expert on their instrument!
I’m not quite willing (or able) to do that, but it is proof that learning is somewhat endless!September 10, 2019 at 11:38 AM #76432
Yep! That’s also why parents should watch what their kids are exposed to cuz they’ll learn bad stuff if you let them. I know I’ll never uncover the deepest depths of any instrument cuz I play several and hope to learn more. I’m a Jerry Douglas fan (major fan) and I think it’s funny that you introduced him as the dobro on the transatlantic sessions, I’ve recently discovered the sessions and have been watching them on YouTube and listening on my mom’s Amazon music, they’re so tasteful in the arrangements and it all sounds so good! And Jerry could be introduced in a hundred ways (multiple times IBMA dobro player of the year, played with AKUS, played with new grass revival I think, who knows what else). I used to practice that much, when I was thirteen, and had nothing else to do. I still have nothing better but I have other possibilities. And back then I improved more quickly than I do nowSeptember 10, 2019 at 10:06 PM #76456AngelaParticipant
Great conversation…and very insightful. I needed to hear this as a positive. Sometimes, it’s so frustrating to see where I want to be and always have that unobtainable carrot in front of my nose. :^) Your take on it reminds me of the saying, “I may not be where I want to be, but thank goodness I’m not where I was. “September 11, 2019 at 7:07 AM #76468
Yes, good point, Angela…if we get discouraged we can usually look back and be reminded of where we’ve gotten to by this time.
I’d love it so much if people would stop by and we’d all sit and play, not any kinda formal jam, but just play what we could together, for a long time. Those little people who reside in the Presonus are pretty boring to hang out with…and they drink way too much of my coffee.September 12, 2019 at 11:39 PM #76593Great ScottModerator
Gunnar, your post had me quite discouraged at first. Then as I read further, I became very ENcouraged. Then, a little further on, I became very discouraged. But, as I kept reading and reading, I became more and more ENCOURAGED. Thank you for posting your thoughts and helping to encourage us.
I guess, in a way, it’s a lot like all those people who, believing that there is a pot of gold at the end of a rainbow, spend their whole life searching for it without realizing that there is actually NO pot of gold waiting for them, simply because a rainbow has no end. (Drat those dastardly Leprechauns!!!) But the journey to find that elusive pot of gold often provides an adventure that they would have otherwise missed had they not journeyed forth.
ADVENTURE IS OUT THERE!
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