Ludovico Einaudi – A Spiritual Experience

For many years I have loved and deeply appreciated the genius musical creations of composer Ludovico Einaudi . A week ago, I was fortunate to experience the totality of his artwork in person while he performed in Costa Mesa at the Segerstrom Center. Witnessing Einaudi create and mold sound energy which transcends time and space was an extremely spiritual experience.

Sound has the beautiful ability to go beyond the constraints of the audible sector and extend into all other facets of the psyche – whether we realize its presence or not. I see and feel energy. As a result, Ludovico’s performance was especially enlightening. The sound he emits has such depth and heart. It dives deep into the conscious mind and invigorates the Spirit. There is a connectedness he stimulates which coincides with all thoughts and feelings. Not only in the human experience, but also those which encompass our living environment. That is to say, the vibrations his music creates permeate into every “structure” in the vicinity. The air moves, the ground vibrates, thus going deep into the core of the Earth and extending out into all life. His sound waves openly flow into everything. The air tingles and shivers with both audible and visible sound.

When I witness Einaudi play, I visually see the sound waves moving through “open air.” Each note has a different structure of vitality. These structures mimic, that is to say they emit the same vibrations as our emotions. Each individual note played is a variation or degree of human emotion. The more in-tune you are with all of your emotions, the greater ability and variational depth, music has to “speak” to you. His melodic sequencing caresses the entire emotional realm in a way that brilliantly produces a deeper and more wholesome state of emotions. Well-rounded music has the ability to not only enliven emotions, but also to grown and help them evolve. This is done not only by the audible sound of music, but also the vibrational frequencies sound emits. Sound aka vibrations aka energy flows around you, if you are open, you can allow those frequencies to permeate into your energy field so you too are vibrating at the same level of emotion that the music is evolving. You then become one with the sound… one with the vibrational emotion. You begin to radiate and pulse with the music, you are no longer separate, rather you have integrated your being with the vibrational emotions being created. For what is sound but the vibration of waves permeating into consciousness, of both living and “non-living” entities thus creating and enhancing life.

The visual:

I sat facing the stage from a box seat. I was looking down upon the gathering of listeners and creators. I opened my palms and placed them in front of me, toward the stage, so I would be the most receptive to receiving and amplifying energy. I took off one of my heels and placed my bare foot against the wall so I could feel the vibrations of sound through a solid medium. This is the manner in which I experienced the entire concert.

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Ludovico Einaudi – Elements Tour PC: Jubel

It was beautifully captivating to observe the visual nature of sound when it interacted with each individual member of the audience. The vibrations of the sound Ludovico would create would dance through the air towards people. Once it “hit” an individual it would transform their energy field so it was “dancing” with the rhythm of Ludovico and his accompanying band. Instead of having a room full of very specific individual auras, once the sound would reach someone it would evolve the “individual” aura to the same vibration and expression of the music being played. The anxious nature that sometimes is present in crowds was transformed into a single energy source which radiated and pulsed in harmony. The unity of complete balance among an individualized audience was absolutely magnificent to witness. It was as if you could see people’s bodies ebbing and flowing in union with sound.

There were a few people in the audience who allowed their energy to soar and expand outside of their immediate body. The visible energy of these folks would glide in spirals (think of DNA strands) above. Those spirals (our spirals) were all connected to one another as if they were seeking out individuals with the same nature of exploration (creation). Upon meeting, our DNA spirals would soar through the room (extending through the ground and roof) and create an even brighter gleam of light. I amplified this pure light to expand through space. I dually saw the band and audience below as well as our energy permeating through the ground and extending into and across the Earth. From the core to the crust I witnessed the wonderful signature of Einaudi enhance the vibrational energy field. I saw strands of spirals encompassing and blanketing the Earth and surrounding universe over and over in the most intricate infinite designs.

There were parts/scenes/acts during the concert where the majority of the audience would get fitful. That is to say that there was suddenly a mass movement. People would fidget in their seats uncomfortably. Generally, this happened when the band would pair “unlikely” notes together. Since each note is a varying degree of emotion, those who were less in-tune with themselves became visibly uncomfortable. It was nothing short of stunning to witness. It seemed the deeper an individual was (consciousness, intuition, love) the more still they were able to remain. Absolutely fascinating.

There are many people who interpret Ludovico’s art as “dark and moody.” While I definitely understand that aspect. I take it deeper. To me, his music is rooted deep in the Earth. The “darker” it seems the more grounded it is. It sounds like soil, magma, roots, and rocks buried under the crust of our planet. The “lighter and happier” his music sounds the more heavenly and universe oriented it became. It would float into the wind and through water. The sounds would spin through the atmosphere and into space. His notes would twinkle and sparkle. Ludovico is capable of conveying the depth of thought and emotional expression into sound which transforms energy fields so the listener is “hit” with the same sentiment of passion.

Seeing and feeling the magnitude of emotional expression made me think a lot about the dumbing-down of society. Generally, mainstream music contains surface notes. The chorus is monotonous in the sense of using only a few keys to express itself. When certain chords are used over and over the listener doesn’t experience the wide array of emotions or vibrations. Music is becoming mundane. This beautiful art is expression. When we have a culture stuck in arrested development it is audibly apparent through the type of musical outlets we identify with. Play around with the scale, incorporate flats, sharps, drop an octave. Take it deep and be bold. The more your are able to express and feel the more well-rounded you become. Not just as a musician, but in every facet of your life. Music has the ability to transform and change. Music awakens and enlivens the human condition. Music is one of the many geniuses of the Mind.

Listen. Feel. Become. Create.

Ludovico Einaudi Live at the Itune Festival 2013

Ben, Lyz, Myself and Jubel

Ludovico Crew. Thank you for being a part of this incredible experience with me. I love and value you all!

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Darling Sweet Darling

Darling, sweet darling

Dare you undress

Laying there naked

While I caress

 

The soul of your body

The soul of your being

The soul of our love

While both hearts are beating.

 

Darling, sweet darling

I want you stripped down

To the core of what makes this great world spin round

You in I

And I in you

Forever together like two pieces do.

 

Darling, sweet darling

Oh don’t close your eyes

This is the part with no surprise

With hands interlocked

Searching for more

To the shore of existence

The shore of before.

 

Darling, sweet darling

Laying there stripped

Of the eyes of tomorrow

While showered with bliss

Turn over your body

Your mind I will kiss

It’s the essence of you that I’m going to  miss.

 

Darling, sweet darling

Our memories are gold

It’s your mind not your body that I longed to hold

Laced in a time

Where your skin played the part

I refuse to compete with the mimes of your heart.

 

Darling, sweet darling

It’s love that I need

The love that the forests of yesteryear bleed

Where thirst is quenched by rivers with ease

And hunger quieted by the rustling of leaves.

 

Darling, sweet darling

Oh why can’t they see

That their valleys are shackled with man made debris

The cities ignite with a rush of great fire

No wonder they’re all so bleak and so dire

My mountains our mountains they sing and they preach

To heavens and galaxies far beyond reach.

 

Darling, sweet darling

I want you exposed

The flesh is as worthless as all of your clothes

With eyes full of longing

With eyes full of hope

Tomorrow perhaps will be just a joke.

 

Darling, sweet darling

Time brings anew

Moments of clarity sparkling with dew

Refreshed from our history

Refreshed from your past

Maybe just maybe these moments will last

The cage has been lifted

The sky turns to clear

I wonder how long it’ll take you to hear.

Innocence of a Child

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“He sat with the innocence of a child while the sky around him parted and spoke of his emergence from the shadows. The edge of darkness lingered below as the sun shown its warmth upon his back as if it was tenderly teasing the blackness from the comforts of trembling heights. These are the days where you carelessly let your feet dangle on the borders of past and present. Reflection now wears the armor of healing rather than the familar loincloth of culpability. Beams of light bathe your body in a gentle embrace of freedom while your echoed voice etches the walls of history with the retrospection of your youth. Red and orange dust swirls around the narrow bends of the steep walls below. There it remains, sanding down your rough edges until all that stands is a silky sillouette radiating the vitality of the clear skies overhead. The past is a building block of which to evolve and grow. You are who you become, not who you’ve been. The unknown is a dangerous place to reside but nothing makes us feel more alive than a life lived on the crumbling sandstone ledge of mystery. Let the sun illuminate the dark canyons of yesterday. There is truth in adventure and darling the purity we find ourselves in soars with open wings above.” – Sara C Fry

Leaving Grants, NM – Early Camping Shenanigans

 Once we arrived in the hotel room in Grants I sat down on the bed and fell asleep within seconds. My body was in dire need of rest. I was exhausted to say the least. My feet were painfully sore; this was the case for every other hiker as well. Road walks are killer. Every single body part starts screaming after the nonstop pounding against hard packed even pavement. When you’re on trail, your feet are constantly adjusting with every step. The trail is uneven and therefore the muscles in your feet get to move freely as they traverse the rocky path. When you’re on the road, you take the same exact step mile after mile, there is no reprieve from the harsh jolting that takes place. Road walks are NOT fun!

The boys woke me up in the morning to get breakfast, but there was no way I was waking up. They came back a few hours later just before check out. We packed up our gear, headed to Walmart for a few supplies, then hit the wide open ‘trail’ again. We walked along the road… oh joy! We passed by a correctional facility. I couldn’t imagine being cooped up in one of their small enclosed room. We joked about escapees saying they were thru-hikers and just walking North to their freedom.

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“Hospitality Center”…. this looks like the worst hospitality I’ve ever encountered…

There were signs posted alongside the road, “Do Not Pick Up Hitch Hikers.” Ipod and I took pictures right next to the sign and got a few good honks from passing motorists as they whizzed by.

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Classic Hikers Goofing Off

When Ipod, Nugio, and myself finally got to the trailhead we saw Chim rounding the trail ahead. The three of us took off our packs for a break while Chim got out in front. Not long after we sat down, a couple in a truck pulled up and offered us water and Gatorade. We gladly accepted and talked with the lovely duo for about half an hour. Nuge’s feet were killing him and we didn’t plan on going very much further that day. It didn’t matter that there was still plenty of sunlight left, our main goal had been getting out of town… and we had succeeded.

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Nugio and Ipod at the trailhead where we met the lovely couple

We saddled up again and I followed as Nuge lead the way. We made it less than a mile before we came upon a flat spot on the right side of the trail. It didn’t matter that there was cactus scattered throughout the entire plot – we were happy to see flat ground. Nuge and I laughed as we both laid out our Tyvek and yardsale’d all of our gear. Ipod showed up a couple mins later and he agreed it was a good spot to NOT hike. We had done maybe 12 miles that day.

Nuge and I broke out our Dodgy Bottles filled with whiskey and proceeded to medicinally treat our wounds. Slowly the aches and pains relinquished their grasps and faded away into soft murmurs. This was a good day!

Nuge and I were a little bummed that Chimi wasn’t with us. Chimichanga is much faster than we are. He will most likely be finished with the trail by August… as I’m typing this he’s somewhere in Northern WY (he may have already crossed into Montanta). We laughed and thought, well… that’s the last time we’ll ever see him again. We were both bummed, but we knew that this day would come eventually.

About an hour later, Nuge and I turned on our phones. There was texts from Chimi asking us if we went the wrong way…. we both laughed at the scene laid out before our eyes – both of us well on our way to being drunk while waiting for the sun to go down. We told Chim that we’d stopped and made camp for the night. About another hour passed before we heard Chimi’s call above our heads. Nuge and I were in disbelief. Chimi was coming down the trail after us. Nuge and I bust up in laughter. As he strolls up, we tell him to come sit down with us and take a swig. We must have been quite the site. 4 hikers all sitting on one neoair. Shocked, but pleasantly surprised, the sounds of laughter danced in the air… we had Chimi back!

We stayed up pretty late talking and having a grand time. I was very happy our little family was reunited once again. The three of us fell asleep to the stars above our head as Ipod slept soundly in his tent.

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A rock cairn on our approach up to Mt. Taylor

The following day was our first REAL mountain that we’d get to climb – Mt. Taylor. As the 4 of us made our approach we ran into a water cache. As we were taking a break and filling up our bottles the trail angel showed up. He had more water! We helped him unload his entire trunk (and even his backseat) and strategically placed the bottles into the coolers that he had left for CDT hikers. It was an honor meeting him. We were al VERY grateful for his dedication and kindness to complete strangers. He bid us good luck and we parted ways.

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Nugio on the final ascent to Mt. Taylor… after a pretty gnarly bush whack

We reached the top of Mt. Taylor and relaxed in a wind break. We laid out our sweat soaked shirts and let them dry in the harsh sun. Chimi took a nap while the three of us relaxed and enjoyed our first summit on the CDT. This was a good day. Over an hour later we looked up at the sky due south of us and to our displeasure we saw rather ominous looking clouds. We hurriedly packed our gear and began the decent to find camping for the night.

Chimi, Nuge, and Ipod in the wind break atop Mt. Taylor

Chimi, Nuge, and Ipod in the wind break atop Mt. Taylor

 Chimi and I found a million dollar camp site and settled in. There were two Teepees, a fire ring complete with rock tiling on the floor, and wonderful sitting logs. It was an absolutely amazing find! Happy and tired the 4 of us went to sleep.

Chimi, Nuge, and I had cowboy camped (sleeping under the stars) and woke up in the middle of the night to rain drops. We hurriedly set up our shelters before drifting off to sleep again. Another great day on the CDT.

 

Live Out Guest Post: The Most Important Backpacking Traits

In 22 days I’ll take my first steps on one of the most ruggedly beautiful and enticing backcountry trails in the United States: The Continental Divide Trail – a 3,100 mile backpacking trek. I’ve spent the past 2 years exploring and expanding my backcountry resume. In less than 24 months, I’ve logged over 3,500 miles exclusively on our nation’s extensive network of trails. Needless to say, I’m helplessly in love with nature and all things outdoors.

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Many people think that to be able to backpack you must be young, strong, and healthy. This may be true, but not in the sense of the definitions you’ve been taught. A backpacker must possess these qualities, but on a different platform.

The ideal backpacker should be young… at heart. They should know how to let loose and gaze at nature with the wide-eyed wonder of a child. They should welcome the unknown and recapture the freedom that they once felt in their youth.

The ideal backpacker should be strong… with determination. They should know that self-encouragment and positivity are quintessential friends to have along on any journey. They must believe in themselves and have the strength to continue achieving progress.

The ideal backpacker should be healthy… mentally healthy. They should recognize the power that not only their words hold, but also their thoughts. Over 90% of hiking is entirely mental. The other 10% is physical. The mind is a beautiful thing; we have the power to achieve anything we set our sights on. Perhaps J.R.R. Tolkien said it best, “It is not the strength of the body that counts, but the strength of the spirit.”

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I found my passion for backpacking after I had gotten diagnosed with cancer at the young age of 19. During that time, I had been through 11 surgeries in 13 months. It was sheer torture – in all sense of the word.

But my health issues go back further. Five years prior to my cancer diagnosis, I sustained a Traumatic Brain Injury. I was in a coma, I had to re-learn how to properly read, I was bedridden for years and was unable to attend my Sophomore, Junior, and Senior years of high school. To this day I have a grocery list of persistent symptoms long enough to make even a personal assistant do a double take. My physical health has never been my “strong suit.”

At 20 years of age, I was tired of having my life being dictated around what I should and shouldn’t do. I was tired of family constantly checking in on me. I was tired of being perpetually sick. I was tired of listening to doctors tell me how to live. This was, after all, MY life.

I decided to set out on my own path. For years I had wanted to thru-hike the Pacific Crest Trail. So I strapped on my backpack and tramped down the winding trail of exploration, imagination, and overall sheer happiness… and I haven’t looked back since.

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Because of my ever prominent health symptoms, hiking does not come easy for me. On any given day I could have one or all of the following: blurry vision, vertigo, extreme fatigue, complete loss of hearing, numb mouth, and severe muscle spasms… just to name a few. But I’ve made a conscious decision not to let any of these things hold me back from doing what I truly love.

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Backpacking is my passion. I refuse to fall back on the many legitimate reasons as to why some people say I “can’t.” I refuse to be defined by the suffocating constraints that people so readily want to place on me. I was given life so that I could LIVE – genuinely and wholeheartedly. Stephen Covey said, “Live life out of your imagination, not your history.” And as long as I’m living I intend to indefatigably follow his wisdom.

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To me, nature is more than a wild, opulent wonderland.  It is more than the dazzling alpine lakes and the rigidly enchanting peaks. To me, nature is my home. It’s a place where I can be myself without hiding my ailments. It’s a place where I can test my strength and endurance. It’s a place where despite the war sometimes raging inside me, I’m able to stand amidst such grand majesty and everything else simply fades away into the wind.

To me, nature isn’t strictly a place or location, but it exists inside each and everyone of us. Everybody possess the three backpacking traits: youth, strength, and health. But it is up to the individual to cultivate these valuable qualities.

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I challenge you to dream big, despite what others may say.  I encourage you to follow your passion, it’ll take you further than you’ve imagined. I urge you stop making excuses. We have the ability to not only overcome, but also thrive in our environment when we put our mind to it.

When situations seem daunting and you begin doubting yourself, remember the girl who’s walking across the length of the United States despite everything she’s been told she “can’t” do. Remember the girl who looks for the positive things in life, when often times it’s the harder route to take. But most importantly, remember that YOU are capable of anything you set your mind to… because just like hiking, life is also 90% mental and 10% physical. Now take my hand and we’ll roam with a freedom rarely seen.

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Click “Follow” to join me on my journey of Continental Divide Trail… starting in 22 days.

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