I taught a workshop not too long ago that was really liberating for me in many ways. I myself was enlightened by the revelations that came forth out of this session. Being that I have been in music and have had a love for music for so many years the information that I was able to download in my research and preparation for this workshop was in my own life remarkable. Many times people think that facilitators and lectures have all the answers but if we take a minute and realize that we all are human and in some way or another growing and developing we will recognize the fact that no one has all the answers and for many of the people that stand before us as vessels to be used by God they themselves are learning as they teach. I heard someone say once that the best way to learn is to become a teacher. This statement stuck with me because it in one way allows us as teachers, lectures facilitators to remain human. So many times people put us on pedestals and make us superheroes when we’re are merely yielded instruments willing to be used by God. On the other hand it forces us as the teacher or facilitator to eat we must seek out revelation in order to have something to offer. In light of that as I taught this particular workshop which I had taught before I began to see how the revelation and information that I’d received became a beacon of light for the attendees and it was not a surprise for me because it was the same eye opening experience that I had in my preparation.
I’ve always felt something so powerful when it came to music. I can remember as a kid finding that melodies and lyrics of certain songs became almost like a hiding place for me when I was afraid or a comforting expression when I felt alone but it wasn’t until years later that I was able to articulate this in a way that I truly understood the meaning and the power of music. How could it be that Joe Cocker could sing a song many years ago called “You Are So Beautiful” that would allow me to express my thoughts and feelings to the woman of my dreams? How could it be that Christopher Cross could sing a song entitled “Sailing” that would still to this day give me a since of refreshing for the vision and belief I have for the life of my dreams? Who can explain the reason why Billy Joel’s “For the Longest Time” still to this very day can make me feel the joy, excitement and freedom of expression that I felt when I listened to it as a child?
There is only one answer and it hit me when I was preparing for this particular workshop. I have written songs, I have sung songs, I have recorded songs but I never knew that I was expressing a language that had the power to touch the lives of people that didn’t even look like. Furthermore that didn’t even have the same language or dialect that I have. People that wouldn’t necessarily understand my lifestyle and why I like to eat grits with my fish sometimes or why I go to church every Sunday or even why I liked my hair big, full and natural as oppose to short tapered and faded. These people may not understand the various facets of my humanness but what they could get was the love and excitement I felt when I sang Stevie Wonders “Overjoyed”. The joy and gladness I felt when I sang Nat King Coles “L-O-V-E”. They could feel this because music in my definition is a universal language. I may not understand what you say when you speak but when you put those same words to melody I now can grasp the message hidden in the words. The message of love, joy, strength, pain, sorrow, gladness, sadness, passion and all the other emotions that come through our speakers on a regular basis.
Music is a powerful vehicle that can be life altering because in the message that we hear with our ears (the words) and with our hearts (the emotion) we can alter or enhance our belief system. Because all music is, is a quick catchy way of influencing ones belief system. Yes it’s a universal language but we must understand that language is developed first for communication and adaptation but finally for transformation. If there were no language the A B C’s would be useless. If there were no language the learning of right from wrong which is instilled in us at an early age would not be necessary. If there were no language University would not be necessary. Thus we as individuals, a family, a people, a community, a nation, a human race would be aimless in our efforts, and irrational in our affairs because we would have no since of grounding or basis for development. I encourage you embrace the music of your heart. Yes it’s fine to listen to your favorite singer and cheer them on as they attempt to contribute to society. But find your own song, and sing it loud and proud. Whether you can sing or not is irrelevant, sing anyway. Your hearts song was never meant to sound like your neighbors but what it was meant to do is to be the expression of your true self to the world thus contributing your stroke of color to the canvas universal expression. I love music and you should too. Blessings to you always!