All posts tagged: Music

Floral Notes and Bardo: Explore Bananas

By Travis Newbill Floral Notes and Bardo: The Creative Chronicles of a Shambhala Mountain Resident is a daily feature on the SMC blog in which a member of our staff/community shares his experience of existing as part of Shambhala Mountain Center. Cody is beaming, going to Rainbow gathering. Last week sitting on a bench in the sun, with Heather, a few days after I’d decided not to attend Kasung Encampment, Cody approached and introduced the idea of me going along with him to the Gathering. “Hippe Encampment,” Heather remarked. Exactly. The idea appealed to me because it was so funny, but what I really need to is settle. “The seasons are not theoretical here.” Acharya Lyon said that a while ago, and it haunts me, in a funny way.  Summer is bananas.  There are so many people here and so much going on.  It’s really impossible to keep track, challenging to keep in touch.  It’s a buzzing hive. ~~~ I slept a bit last night, after spending beautiful time with Heather.  This morning, rainbows on our …

Floral Notes and Bardo: Until I Sing

By Travis Newbill Floral Notes and Bardo: The Creative Chronicles of a Shambhala Mountain Resident is a daily feature on the SMC blog in which a member of our staff/community shares his experience of existing as part of Shambhala Mountain Center. Mental combustion in the middle of the night, fuming while the mist hung cool over the peaks in the morning.  Soft, and myself, dense — until I sang. Last night a mime appeared at dinner.  Then we held a Sukhavati ceremony for distant friend.  As the ceremony was beginning, a tremendous thunderstorm rolled in.  Hail came pouring down onto the shrine tent.  Acharya couldn’t speak over the noise, so we paused.  We sat while the storm raged.  Then, continued the ceremony. Afterwards, I realized that my shoes were soaked.  I walked barefoot on little balls of hail and dirt trail beside Acharya and we enjoyed how the whole thing had unfolded. I woke up the in middle of the night, angry, resentful of my commitment to Kasungship. Basically: I have to devote hours of my …

Floral Notes and Bardo: Musical Self, Peachy

By Travis Newbill Floral Notes and Bardo: The Creative Chronicles of a Shambhala Mountain Resident is a daily feature on the SMC blog in which a member of our staff/community shares his experience of existing as part of Shambhala Mountain Center. Heavy clouds, a bit of rain — like sitting on a bench and reading dharma.  Then, cooler and calm. ~~~ I like to sit in this chair, in “my” “front yard” (yurt yard). I felt so dense yesterday, edgy.  Almost vicious.  Critical.  Arrogant.  Even with reminders all around me that gentleness is the way… how to shift?  Finally before dinner, I walked into the Japanese garden behind Sacred Studies Hall and read some teachings — reminder.  The result was that I felt less vicious. The world became almost entertaining.  Non-threatening.  I’ve noticed myself comparing myself to others recently, and feeling less-together, less-clean, less-vibrant. I sat down at the dinner table and Heather asked: “How’s your head?” “Stuffy.” “How’s your heart?” “…” “How’s your heart?” “…soft.” “Like a marshmallow?” “Like a peach.” And Kate, across the table, …

Floral Notes and Bardo: Good-life Immersion

  Floral Notes and Bardo: The Creative Chronicles of a Shambhala Mountain Resident is a daily feature on the SMC blog in which a member of our staff/community shares his experience of existing as part of Shambhala Mountain Center. A week of staff retreat–so, so good… Meditation in the mornings, talks from our teachers, a beautiful lahsang on day one, cooking meals for each other.  In the afternoons–activities: music group, art, nature, physical movement, study… So, peeps chose a track, grouped up, and got deep into those activities.  Some of us peeps got into music.  I facilitated the group and encouraged deep listening, space exploration, improvisation…  edgy spots, sweet spots, unexpected things.   And after we bravely improvised together, becoming braver as the days went on, we’d spend some time just hanging out with some tunes–Irish tunes, Brazilian jazz tunes…  everyone in the group was coming from a different place, musically, and so the improv was interesting and also the hangout section was lots of fun and varied. The first night of the retreat we held …

Floral Notes and Bardo: All Textures, Musical

  Floral Notes and Bardo: The Creative Chronicles of a Shambhala Mountain Resident is a daily feature on the SMC blog in which a member of our staff/community shares his experience of existing as part of Shambhala Mountain Center. Jump–out of my body Be–in my body Shuffle Grasp, oh, leggo Pop, shine into a room Crystal-air fingers sweeping across body–floor, air waiting for nothing, all textures holy Storytelling, all the time. The story of my weekend: Friday evening–long journey through the snow to Elkhorn house, jamming and arts and crafts. A fun scene. Beautiful free-music and glitter all over the place culminating in a multi-person hula hoop molecule moving to the sounds of ragtime piano music (funky old out of tune piano at Elkhorn house). Slumber party in Heather’s room. In the morning, Dorje Kasung color-guard, hoisting the flags. We stood in our pajamas and saluted out the window, joined them in singing the anthem, then: “As you were!” Back into bed giggling. Chores at the Stupa, deep cleaning. Felt great. Some practice afterwards. Later group …

Finding Your Rhythm

By Christine Stevens Christine Stevens leads Healing Sound Retreat, along with Silvia Nakkach, August 29–September 1  The following is an excerpt from Music Medicine, the Science and Spirit of Healing Yourself with Sound (Sounds True, 2012) We use the language of rhythm all the time. I feel “off-beat.” Happiness is called “up-beat.” We talk about feeling like “we got our groove back.” But dive deeper into this rhythm metaphor to the deep pulsing heartbeat that defines life itself, and you’ll discover that rhythm exists within and all around you. Playing drums and percussion can become a sacred invocation of this healing life force. Four Rhythms of Life We all have rhythm within us. This rhythm is so natural that we hardly notice the drum of who we are. The following are just a few examples of four rhythms we know from being alive that define the movement of life. 1. Heartbeat. The heartbeat rhythm is primal—the mother of all rhythms and the rhythm we first heard inside our mother’s womb. The groove of life ranges …

Floral Notes and Bardo: Nine Minutes Well Spent

  Floral Notes and Bardo: The Creative Chronicles of a Shambhala Mountain Resident is a daily feature on the SMC blog in which a member of our staff/community shares his experience of existing as part of Shambhala Mountain Center. Squealing demon racing through rib-cage forest care and when I’m scared care when I’m scared of the dissolution of my constructed character-dude care care about more than my story (Characters; care-actors) I’m not able to be the way I was. I’m growing suspicious of the effort to find the right way to be Care less about it turning out right care more so I’m not so uptight Care about others Amen. The Mahayana is sneaking up on me, maybe. Last night we danced–“open to others” Nathaniel is an amazing dancer, teacher, and he has exquisite taste in music. So glad for his existence and friendship… We have a lovely shrine room with a great sound system. Last night–blues dance class. I love it. Nathanial teaches along with Kaleigh (my boss). Kaleigh is teaching me a lot, including how to …