A Day Of Singing

By: Stephen Levine
Posted: February 1, 2013

We have recommended to many who feel they cannot in grief steady the agitated mind that they take up singing. It opens into other hemispheres. 

When the heart aches song soothes. Sing anything from current rock themes to old love songs. A Sarah Vaughn ballad or repeat a nursery rhyme. Belt out a show tune or humm a Bach toccata. Buy an inexpensive karaoke machine and sing your heart out. Let it resonate in the war torn vaultings of the heart. And sing too with others: join a choir, a barbershop quartet, a cluster of street corner harmonizers.

The song echoes in the ache between the mind and the heart. It grieves the absence of loved ones and rejoices in the kindness we have known.

We find our throat just above our heart. The body is a sounding chamber.

Wishful thinking leaves us wanting. But one breath at a time we can recall the song, hear the flute, smell the rose. One breath at a time we open the heart.

It’s not like we’ve forgotten completely. There is more to it all than can be seen from our shadowy corner. It’s not always easy. It takes a moment. And we never know when that moment might come! Some sunsets are noticed more beautiful than others. Certain sounds resonate. Flowers begin to catch our eye.

Singing potentiates the spirit and reinforces the quality of consciousness we call the heart.
As our song deepens it makes audible the heart bringing our intuition to the surface so we might hear it for ourselves.

We sing from trust in the process not knowing what comes next.

It spreads from the center of the chest and opens the body. Relief follows the surrender into the song.

At first we may be trying to sing, even sing well, but that has nothing to do with this healing. This is an exercise in hearing not singing. Tempted by heaven not Carnegie Hall. The goal is to listen deeply and let such aesthetic value judgments disappear into the sound at the center. And hear inside the sound some of what the heart longs for. Letting the song sing itself.

Not simply singing but listening closely to the song as the sound leaves the throat and is drawn into the labyrinths behind the ears forming an auricular circle. The song continually recycled from mouth to ear. Surround sound for the heart.