Music of Life

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Aphritha
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Music of Life

Postby Aphritha » 10 Oct 2014, 16:56

Upon doing a meditation the other day, I decided simply to focus on the sounds around me. The concept was simple, and it was an easy meditation to carry out, but it got me thinking(a scary thing, I'm sorry). Most of what I heard were man made noises, and while I wouldn't call them negative, they had a less than vibrant feel. The SWISH of each car brought on a twinge of anxiety each time they'd go by. The noise of the heating/cooling system was deafening. The dribble of the fish tank filter wasn't exactly as soothing as a gentle stream.
We all know music affects our moods. What about the music of all the things going on around us? How could this positively or negatively influence us? How can we work with/around it?
Oddly enough, the TV in the other room was quite comforting.


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Branflakes
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Re: Music of Life

Postby Branflakes » 13 Oct 2014, 16:22

Interesting thought! Maybe the sounds evoked an emotional response based off of experience? Cars on the highway--I can hear them from my house--always reminds me of the work-a-day life most people live these days. And it's a stressful life: morning commute, meetings, not enough sleep, gotta go-go-go NOW! all the time. For me, the sound of cars represents this. Maybe on some level it's the same way with you?

Interestingly enough, I have a friend who is very much into the "gotta go NOW" lifestyle, always going, and usually for others' benefits. The off chance I've caught him just sitting around (which has happened once or twice!), I find he bounces anxiously--feeling like he needs to to SOMETHING. He thinks that things are "too quiet" when he's not up and moving and doing something 'important.' Just an observation.

The TV sounds, though...maybe it's because TV always offers that modern-day escapism that a lot of people rely on at the end of the day. It does offer comfort: you can sit back and relax while absorbing the latest episode of whatever reality program or drama you happen to be watching at the moment.

I do think we can use the sounds around us for positive interactions in meditation, though! I can't remember where I heard it, but it was a great anecdote about someone trying to meditate in a busy house. THey sit there, eyes closed, and concentrate on meditating. But the rest of the household would be running about and shouting. The meditator get upset and says "Will you be quiet? I'm trying to meditate!" While in reality the meditator should learn to block those obscurations and annoyances out while meditating. I think on some level we might be able to do the same with every day noises. Not necessarily "block them out," but maybe accept them as what they are--like you do with thoughts in meditation.

The sounds of our surroundings could also help us ground ourselves in the present. Focus on the symphony of fish tank filters and AC units and traffic as a way to help focus your mind and clear it of thoughts. Not sure...just my two cents!

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Aphritha
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Re: Music of Life

Postby Aphritha » 14 Oct 2014, 16:27

Interesting thought! Maybe the sounds evoked an emotional response based off of experience?
Maybe so! Seems to be believable to me. I'm not sure why cars evoke stress for me; I never liked the sound when I was a kid, either. Impermanence, maybe. A reminder things keep moving, even when I dislike it. A vague feeling of being...unsafe.
After thinking a bit on the TV, I can tell why I like it. I almost never watch TV. However, I am a social person often put into solitude. A sound of someone talking is soothing, even if they're not talking to me. It makes things feel more lively. And I think the fish tank is frustrating because it doesn't work well, and is something we're trying to get rid of being as we no longer have the room for it...
Your friend sounds like my grandmother! Move move move...it can make a slow paced person nauseous!
Sounds are certainly inescapable, meditation or no!



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