The Key Notes in Spiritual Harmony: Past, Present, Future
"Spiritual harmony exists from experiencing the prelude of past mistakes, the serenade of present awareness and the symphany of future opportunities." Donald D Wright, PhD 12-31-2012
In musical terms, harmony means the blending of two or more musical elements. One element is a higher note and the other is a lower note. Harmony occurs when these notes are sounded simultaneously. So, if one were to play a chord on a musical instrument, this chord would be comprised of different notes. For example, in order to play the chord "C", one must play the root note which is "C" and also play the notes that harmonize with "C" which are "E" and "G". Thus the notes "C", "E" and "G" played together simultaneously form the chord "C".
What does spiritual harmony in our lives mean? For spiritual harmony to exist we have to have a life root note such as the above example. We are that root note. Without ourselves we cannot have spiritual harmony. If we did not exist there might be harmony but it would not be our personal spiritual harmony. We have to be a part of the picture. A part of the song. A part of the music.
Our root note is who we think we are, our spiritual root note is the essence of who we really are. The real us. The one who has tried and failed, watched and fallen asleep, continued on when wanting to give up. It is the best of the worst things we have ever done and the worst of the best we have to offer. Sometimes it is hidden under layers of dysfunctional family reunions. Other times it is displayed in the eyes of the person to whom we have given hope.
The other notes are not the same note as the root note. They are different. They have a different tone. One note has to be higher. Seeing above any doubt. Rising higher without looking down. Seeing the sun beyond the clouds and knowing, not just believing, but knowing there is an answer to every problem. And then accepting that the answer may never be revealed. This note must maintain its position as an integral part of spiritual harmony.
And so, we have the root note and the high note. And when these notes are played they sound better than one or the other note alone. But there is something missing with only two part harmony. The third note must be present to provide the proper blend of completeness. Similar to sweetener in tea with lemon, sweet and sour sauce with oriental food, or pickles with ice cream, a dissimilar note is necessary for the melody of spiritual harmony. This lower note has earned its right to be played due to all the losses, failed attempts and lonely nights you have experienced. The sound of heartaches rings silently if the note is played alone. But with the other two parts of your life keeping beat, this note adds wholeness and resiliency to the chord.
Yes it takes these notes to produce harmony. It takes failures, successes, dreams and nightmares. It takes dining with dignitaries, drinking with desperados and praying that you will never do it again to feel the vibrations of spiritual harmony. And it also takes experience, desire, and habitual persistence. It takes living life with rusty strings, broken keys, stuck pedals and lost sheet music. It takes pawn shops, comedy shows and the preacher knowing what you did to make spiritual harmony.
Spiritual harmony is not created by stagnation or avoiding risks. The color of inside the box has no place on the keyboard of life. To venture beyond is to sit down at life’s instrument. To close your eyes and become the instrument is to define spiritual harmony. To play your symphony in the presence of no one prepares your piece to be heard by one person in a thousand. And, when it is heard, that one person’s life will never be the same again. This is spiritual harmony.
So, there has to be more than one note to produce harmony. This is the same with spiritual harmony. There has to be more than yourself to produce spiritual harmony in your life. The other notes? Well, they may be a combination of other people, other animals, other spiritual teachers, or other interests. But, there has to be more than just yourself.
How often I have wanted (and done so) to be by myself to get away from problems, worries, or stress. However, by doing so I have not created harmony in my life. Now, if I have isolated myself and have gotten in touch with my Creator or nature or relaxing music, then I have created spiritual harmony because there are more components involved other than only myself.
And now, as I meditate, I am the root. My breath is another note. My thoughts or non-thoughts are another note. The keys to spiritual harmony are black and white, majors and minors, sharps and flats. My fingers are rigid and flexible, blistered and callused and stand ready to begin the next stanza of life. And the hope that comes from the past, present and future is the chord that begins my song of life.
What are the notes that makeup the song of your life? Are they in harmony? Do they resonate a melody? Or have they not been played in so long that they are out of tune. That even if you did have harmony, it wouldn’t feel like it.
Perhaps your instrument (your mind-body-spirit) needs tuning. If an instrument is not in tune, it will not sound appropriate even if you strike the correct notes. Do you need to tune your instrument? Ways to tune your instrument might include: rest, prayer, meditation, exercise, positive thinking, de-stressing. The following exercise is also an excellent way to become aware of spiritual harmony in your life.
Exercise For Spiritual Harmony
Find a comfortable place to sit or lie and begin to focus on your breathing. Simply breathe slowly and deeply. As you begin to relax with each and every breath, bring to mind the concept of harmony…whatever that might be. Allow harmony to develop in what ever way it wishes. Perhaps it is a picture of the ocean with sand and clouds…or maybe the mountains with trees and a waterfall. Perhaps it is concepts such as peace, relaxation, happiness that have various components that make up the concept. Whatever it is, allow harmony to come to you.
Now place yourself in this mental picture. Notice how and where you fit in…become aware of what you see…sounds you hear…feelings you feel.
And now bring to mind the concept of you being the root…the foundation…the beginning of this harmony. There is you and then there are other parts of your life that work with you to develop the notes of your spiritual harmony.
Notice the other notes…whatever, whomever, wherever they might be. The essentials that comprise your harmony. The things that must exist in order for there to be harmony in your life.
If these factors are not present, gently allow them to come into your mind. Possibly replacing any factors that is hindering harmony. Allowing these attributes to surface and stabilize…grow strong…solid.
Now, continue to be aware of your spiritual harmony and its qualities…what it is that creates spiritual harmony…in your life…today…and forever more.