Meditation

I believe in the healing properties of meditation.

Meditation

Too often I forget what kind of a net positive daily meditation is. It’s nice after a hectic work day to just sit still and simply be for a while without a need to will a change on the outside world.

Or allowing the cares of the outside world to effect negative change on your inner stability.

I’ve felt myself in something of a general malaise lately. And I believe it’s at least partly a consequence of work stress, persistent insomnia, and finding my creative time and energy crowded out by frequent outside obligations. “A non-writing writer is a monster courting insanity” as Kafka so eloquently put it, and I’m finding that painfully accurate. It drives me mad.

So I know I just need to take the time to reset and re-align my priorities, and get back to what makes me feel fulfillment in life. Meditation helps in that reset in clearing my mind.

There are more forms of meditation than I’m properly familiar with. And everybody has their own personal preference for what best helps them in clearing mental clutter. Some people go through guided meditations. Some people meditate in silence. Others like to just listen to background music with headphones while they sit still and clear their mind for some set period.

I’m usually that type of person. I like to listen to nature sounds and sit up straight as I focus on my breathing for a few minutes every so often. And I keep a spare sheet of paper to write down the thoughts which I just can’t get out of my head, so I can immediately return back to the clearing of my mind. And the songs I prefer most of the time for these moments don’t have any words in them.

But there are other times where I feel myself slip out of the cares of this world with songs I wouldn’t expect to help me meditate within a moment. Songs which just give me some ethereal sense of the background spiritual music of existence. And you feel a sense of belonging to a greater whole.

I don’t mind the words then.

In the end, it’s very healing to just listen to some soothing music and to simply be. Sometimes you just need to take the time to breathe.

Let your worries melt away.

Without Music

Music is like magic.

It makes little sense to me how a song can sometimes just hit me without my being able to properly justify why it makes me feel quite so. There are too many examples to count of that in music.

We hear the right song, we can’t get it out of our heads. We hear a certain song, it changes our mood. We hear another song, moods change again. Music can sway our emotions, can sway our thoughts. It can anchor our memories. Then at a later playing take captive those dormant, forgotten, back of your mind thoughts.

And make you remember some loose fragment of a time.

An uplifting song can get you through the down times. A sad one can remind you that you’re not the first to feel sadness, and ease the pain of going at the world alone. Upbeat songs can move crowds. National anthems can move nations.

And some songs just make you feel like you’re floating on air, and make you wonder at life. Those are my favorites. Songs that just make you sink out of the troubles of the moment and make you want to think on what it’s all about really. Why are we all here? What experiences are there waiting for us across the horizon? Is the world all probability and chance or is it perchance partly driven by fate? And in the end maybe even think on how there even is an “I” to think on these things in the first place.

And when I get into those types of moods, that stray thought from a 19th Century mind long since passed still lingers and rings as true now as it did when first it was spoken.

“Without music, life would be a mistake.”

Thinking On A Night Sky

Life is no mistake.

Peaky Blinders

Some shows just deserve way more recognition than they receive.

If you like raw nostalgia for┬áthe Roaring Twenties, then you’ll like Peaky Blinders.

It’s a show of constant turmoil, mixed allegiances, ruthless ambition, gang violence, and lots of alcohol. The main character Tommy Shelby (played by the brilliant Cillian Murphy) leads a gang known as the ‘Peaky Blinders’ as they seek sway and influence in a world where other gangs hold the real power. Ultimately it seems there’s no amount of money and control that satisfies Tommy’s lust for power, and the results may be catastrophic for those around him. It’s also at least partly based on an actual historical group from Birmingham known as the Peaky Blinders, so there’s that added dimension of knowing this type of ruthless gang violence was once a chilling reality. It all makes for a unique backdrop for a drama.

It’s certainly worth a watch if you’re ever bored on a Saturday afternoon and want to try out a new series. It’s not exactly the most family friendly show, and there are moments where you just want to cringe it’s so gruesome, but in the end it makes for a very entertaining and uniquely captivating experience. There’s dark humor along the way, and some especially impressive/hilarious performances from Tom Hardy in Season 2, so it’s not exclusively doom and gloom. My only real issue with my viewing of it is that whenever I stream a BBC series on Netflix it seems to be choppy, but that’s a knock on the streaming not on the series itself. The show itself is pretty much gold.

Season 3 doesn’t look like it’s going to be coming out until later in the year, but for those not yet caught up it’s worth a shot. Some shows take more chances than others, and I feel like they take a lot of chances with plot in Peaky Blinders. I found satisfaction in its unpredictability.

Peaky Blinders Post Picture

I love when a show surprises me.