This post is another mashup. The post is primarily about Jazz music.
I am sharing’s its history and variations as a way for you to become better acquainted with a major aspect of African American culture. It is a mashup because I have additional footage and photos of mural art to share and decided to create content using the images set to various styles of Jazz music. I also wanted to share poems that I wrote, as well as, poems from other poets, adding this all of this to jazz music of various tempos in a visually-enticing video.
As a result, this post is a mashup of Jazz Music, Mural Art & Poetry (by me and other poems from around the world). Not sure, but let’s see how this goes for you. Kevy
Before I go any further, I want to remind you that I am not immediately knowledgeable, off the top of my head, on all the topics on which I write.
I am inspired by life events, observations, relationships, family scenarios, web surfing, and National Public Radio (NPR) to create fresh content. In a sense, I provide a service with my posts. I perform the research, give my opinion, and provide you with references to do further research. You are always invited to respond and even share an entire post.
Though I am African American, and though I appreciate jazz music, I did not know as much about its history, variations, or health benefits until I did the research for this post. I learn something new with every post.
I grew up surrounded by jazz music in New Orleans as a child. My cousin was a DJ at a New Orleans jazz radio station WWOZ. I highly recommend that you download the app for 24 hours a day of free jazz music.
Music has always been a major influence in my life, even as a child.
When I was not much older than 6 or 7 years old, I used to listen to the Motown Sound. My sister’s husband was a deejay, on the most popular black AM radio station in New Orleans, WYLD, and he’d bring free copies of virtually every 45 that was released. Since the Motown Sound was most popular, we ended up having nearly every song released.
Along with my brothers and sisters, we would pantomime performances of the Temptations, the Four Tops, and the Supremes to name a few. I still remember the words to songs that were released when I was a young child.
Back then, my sister Annette, and my brother Ulysses had the strangest music tastes, considering that they were fairly young and products of the ghetto. My sister would have days where she would play Johnny Mathis albums it seems for the whole day. Her go-to song was Chances Are.
My brother was in love with Nancy Wilson. He would do pretty much the same, often playing Guess Who I Saw Today. Music was so integral in our ghetto lives that we embraced everyone’s choices, and even me, at a very young age, would eventually learn to appreciate Johnny Mathis and Nancy Wilson.
My family, as most black families did back then, had two very elegant phonograph consoles, build with craftmanship into very nice solid wood cabinets that looked like an elegant piece of furniture. It served as the foundation of our modest entertainment endeavors. When the top was closed, and my mother placed a lace dolly and a vase of plastic flowers on top, and polish it with that weird-smelling furniture oil. One would never know that it was a record player until it was opened, and guest would say, ‘Oh I didn’t realize that was a record player.’ For a moment, we would feel white-privileged. It was a big bulky piece of furniture that only housed two speakers, a turntable, and storage area for 45s and LPs, but it was nearly the center of our lives back then.
In addition, either I or my sisters would get a portable record player for Christmas. …Sort of the Easy Bake Over of record players, allowing us to listen to music in our rooms upstairs. It did not have a big sound because the speakers were transistor-radio-sized, but we enjoyed listening to the latest music just the same. Upstairs we would sing, dance and listen in private, well almost.
“A really spiritual person will live life as an art, will create a deep harmony between the body and the consciousness. And this is the greatest art there is. His life will be a joy to see. And he will be fragrant, for the sheer reason that there is no split in his being. The very unity makes him organic; the wound of division is healed.” – Osho
What is Meditation To Kevy Michaels? – By Kevy Michaels
I am only joking about becoming Shakespeare, but I wanted to draw your attention to the power of regularly meditating. Apparently, I did.
I practice meditation passionately, as I have been meditating regularly for over 20 years.
It’s the biggest benefit of my life is that it gives me clarity and it elevates me, the latter of which is not very easy to explain, but I will attempt.
Meditation gives me the ability to interact with the physical world, but in a metaphysical way. It gives another dimension to my senses, in it’s truest, non-manipulated form. Meditation allows me to feel the energy, of people, nature, and the air even, from the perspective of my soul, not from the object’s perspective.
Its power in my life is hinted to in the tagline of this blog, Life Is A Teacher. Meditation transforms my experiences from being externally driven, to being internally guided. It takes me to the field of Pure Potentiality, chapter one in Deepak Chopra’s, 7 Laws of Spiritual Success, abook changed my life’s direction, many years ago. I am so passionate about it, that I reread it regularly, and have given copies of it to friends, family, and strangers in many parts of the world.
I will feature posts on other chapters in the future.
In the field of Pure Potentiality is where Divinity, Creativity, Healing, Nature, and God’s energy resides. It’s a sacred layer of existence, on top of physical existence. Meditation makes this energy in all things, accessible, in addition to its physical offerings.
I have found profound power in meditation because it separates me from myself, my ego, and from the character of who I am to the world. It takes me to my spiritual essence, therefore I see my spirit interacting with life, as opposed to my ego-self having the experience. It is quite powerful and its benefits have manifested in many ways in my life. Here are a couple of examples.
It made me more creative, though I never thought that I was. I can clearly remember when I would write songs (such as the one below) where the lyrics, rhythm, and sound would come to me vividly. Since I am not a musician, I would ask a close friend, who sang and played guitar, to give the song chords. Together, we would delight others, performing these songs (and poems) at the Unity church, schools, charity events, nursing homes, and for family and friends. I would eventually write over 200 songs, over 600 poems, and 100’s more finished and unfinished works. There were days where I would get what seemed like cosmic inspiration, writing over 10 songs and poems, in one day.
Being in the field of Pure Potentiality, through meditation, revealed that I had these unbeknownst gifts.
It happened again in the early 2000s, with Love Electra. Love Electra was a company I created that aimed to propagate the message of love through its products, presentation, and messaging. The name, theme music, and product designs all came to me vividly, and magically. The many products, including t-shirts containing messages of Love & Peace, were sweatshop free, were aura cleansed, contained color psychology, and messages and/or images that inspired. During this phase, creativity overflowed to the point that I had boundless energy and ideas. During this period, I meditated daily for at least an hour.
Those days were exciting! Our web and remote boutique set up at concerts, churches, raves, and festivals ignited every venue. In the San Antonio, Houston, and Austin areas, we had a cult following. I would see before my eyes at these events the power of the mind in making visions manifest.
I included my mother, in her late 80’s, in the excitement. She guarded the money box. She protected the money, like Pilate’s guards protected the tomb of Jesus. I can remember how thrilling it was for her to be adored by so many.
I believe that like changing a radio channel frequency from hardcore rap to spa music, meditation tuned me into a frequency where all of this potential was accessible to.
Unfortunately, due to having to surrender to life’s circumstances with health, the economy, and mainly having to solely care for my mother after she had a major stroke, Love Electra was dissolved.
But has it really been dissolved? I feel that with the Life Is A Teacher blog, I am propagating the same message, but doing so digitally, as opposed to doing it with physical products. Please note that I do not sell anything through my blog. I don’t directly promote anything either unless it has positively impacted my life. And, from those indirect promotions, I received no monetary benefit.
My goal now fueled regularly by meditation, is to convey to my audience my life lessons and wisdom, discerned through trials, errors, bad and good choices, successes, triumphs, and failure.
What I present today are virtues I’ve gained and discovered in my life, with the hopes of that others will be inspired, as well. Meditation not only makes this possible, it makes it insuppressible.
The videos below may be helpful in explaining meditation and Pure Potentiality clearer than I have.
What is meditation\to you? How has it impacted your life?
This week, Rev. Wendy begins a 7-week series based on Deepak Chopra’s book, The Seven Spiritual Laws of Success. In this lesson, Wendy covers the first law—The Law of Pure Potentiality—and the fact that we are all pure consciousness.
In this short teaching, Mingyur Rinpoche discusses the relationship between meditation and creativity. As he explains, meditation clears space in the heart and mind for the spontaneous, creative expression of one’s true nature. This video includes subtitle captions in English. This video was originally released as part of the Tergar Learning Community course of Rinpoche’s Monthly Teachings.