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Making Music and Spirit Shine

Create A Deeper Sense of Peace and Grace

by Meredith Blis on 07/21/14

Now, I don't claim to have the answer, but I am really excited to share with you, some insights that I gleaned from last weekends workshop

What Is Oneness?

The Oneness Movement/Concept began in India. It’s not a religion, it’s not a cult – it’s just a way of living with more truth, consciousness, and joy.  Sounds good right?

The reality is that a shift in consciousness occurs when we realize we all share the state of being human and we’re all in this together.  We are One being.

Our human minds have created an illusion of separateness because of both 
conditioning and as a survival mechanism of the ego. When we live with a deep sense of separateness from each other, this state of mind creates confusion, loneliness & emotional pain.  



One of the lessons here is that oftentimes, what goes on within us is a mirror of what is going outside of us.    

We fight under the pretext of They are different 
from me... Often this thought mirrors the judgment, intolerance, hatred that humans have cultivated on the inside for other humans.  The large scale result is war & extreme violence between humans.
  
On a small scale, our individual anxieties and thoughts create the world around us.  We feel stressed and out of control our actions will often create stressed and out of control situations in the immediate world around us as well as stressed and out of control reactions from the people around us.  Just noticing these patterns (we all have em ;))  can create huge changes!
 
I love this Rumi Quote….
“Yesterday I was clever, so I wanted to change the world.  Today, I am wise, so I am changing myself”
 
It all begins with the shift of each individual mind.   It’s an exciting time of transition in our planetary consciousness!  And I believe that as each individual takes a step forward in their path of grace, it helps to create a higher vibration in the collective consciousness. 
 
How does Oneness give us tools to do that? 
It’s pretty simple actually – yay!
It’s called Deeksha which translates as blessing.  
The Deeksha blessing is a transfer of energy (somewhat similar to Reiki, but a different modality) where the practitioner places their hands on someone’s head for approximately a minute.  The result actually creates changes in neuro-brain chemistry, helps create a greater sense of peace, and also helps to release past negative thought patterns.  Sounds crazy right?
Well, remember, I am originally from New York so sarcasm & skepticism are in my DNA……  But I can tell you it’s been an amazing ride with some very happy shifts in my world as well as for the people with whom I've shared this blessing.
Happy to share it all with you too! 
Drop a line back and I can send it your way remotely or find me around town :)
 
Til’ Next Time
May you be blessed with Peace, Joy and Grace 
XO Meredith

What Is Love?

by Meredith Blis on 07/06/14

What is Love? 
To attempt to define it seems like a tall order and perhaps even a presumptuous undertaking…..  Therefore I am also bringing in 3 of my favorite sages…. Brene Brown, Dali Lama and Winnie the Pooh…. 
I’m not sure definition is possible, but I believe that any discussion brings clarity. And a little chat about the positive light of love, can only help it’s beauty grow…..
 
I realized it is a feeling of wholeness, of balance, of peace.  Sometimes it’s fireworks, but not the kind that leave an aftermath of ashes or weave a path of destruction.  It’s being able to exhale and feel safe. It is the core of connection between all things – so sacred that it can’t be defined - it is just felt in recognizing the beauty and light within all things.  It’s the daring to acknowledge that such pure energy exists within us, all of us, everyone. It’s not something we can hold onto or easily let go of -  it’s an energy that lives in the air we share and the air we breathe.
 
“We cultivate Love when we allow our most vulnerable and powerful selves to be deeply seen and known, and when we honor the spiritual connection that grows from that offering with trust, respect, kindness and affection.
Love is not something we give or get; it is something that we nurture and grow, a connection that can only be cultivated between two people when it exists within each one of them – we can only love others as much as we love ourselves.
Shame, blame, disrespect, betrayal and the withholding of affection damage the roots from which love grows.  Love can only survive these injuries if they are acknowledged, healed and rare.”  (Brene Brown – ‘Daring Greatly’)
 
It also appears to me that Love can perhaps be defined as ‘compassion,’ a simple expression of kindness, an exhale into understanding.  Love is nurtured by Love.   It is both a reflection and a mirror.  The more we can cultivate compassion & kindness, within & towards ourselves – the more chance we have of sharing that sense of love towards others.  It grows proportionately and it can be cultivated through practice.
 
“When we feel love and kindness toward others, it not only makes others feel loved and cared for, but it helps us also to develop inner happiness and peace.”  The Dali Lama
 
And when in doubt?
I think this  beautiful insight from one of my favorite sages sums it up nicely….

 
What are some of your thoughts?  Please drop a line back and share, would 'love' to hear them :)
May you experience Love and Light in all that you do!
Blessings,
Meredith

The Story Of The Farmer's Luck

by Meredith Blis on 06/19/14

Ya never know what life is gonna throw at you…. ! It’s human to label things as good or bad, but something I’m starting to see is that oftentimes it’s only our perception that makes it so.

Labels help to organize our brains, so we tend to create boxes to interpret our experiences – good, bad, happy, sad, etc…
 
In my experience, it’s the assumptions and interpretations that make my head spin and my thoughts swirl. It’s the judgment of the experiences that tends to create crazymaking emotions…

 Imagine if we were able to suspend judgment for a moment and just look at things as they are.

 The magic of thinking this way is that it enables us to just be, in the moment with what Is.  Which makes life more about what happens and less about our perception of it.  
 

It’s hard to ever know for sure the long term result of any circumstance. Imagine if we trust that everything (good & bad) has a purpose and is meant to guide us on our perfect path. In times of stress that helps me to exhale!
 
That is the real secret. To accept what happens as perfect synchronicity in our lives regardless of how good or bad we perceive experiences to be. Imagine if we believed that our life has always been in perfect alignment for our highest good and it always will be…
 
When we are living in peace, there is more peace around us.  When the mind waxes into chaos it tends to create more chaos around us.  A peaceful mind enables us to float through life with much more ease.
 
So Here, I share one of my new favorites stories cause I think it perfectly illustrates a pretty hip, albeit waaaay Zen, mindset of peace.
 
-------------
The Farmers Luck…
 It’s the tale of a farmer in China, long ago. One day the farmer’s only horse runs away. 
All of the farmer’s neighbors say “Oh, what bad fortune!”
The farmer merely replies “Perhaps. We’ll see.”

Then, the next day, the farmer’s horse returns to the farm with a wild stallion. Now the farmer has two horses.
“Oh, what great fortune!” the neighbors say.
“Perhaps. We’ll see,” replies the farmer.
 
Then, the farmer’s only son needs to tame the wild stallion. In the process, the son is thrown off the horse, and the young man breaks his leg.
“Oh, what bad fortune!” all the neighbors say.
“Perhaps. We’ll see,” replies the farmer once again.
 
A couple of weeks later, the army comes into town, to round up men to fight in the war. The farmer’s son cannot join the army, because of his broken leg.
“Ah, what wonderful fortune that your son cannot go to fight in the war, because he broke his leg, because he was taming the wild stallion, because your first horse ran away in the first place!”
“Perhaps…” said the farmer again.
----------
 
And the story could go and on… but you get the point. Maybe the events that occur in our lives aren't Good or Bad and It’s our perception, that makes it so...
 
Oftentimes we can’t control life anyway.  So the best we can do is strive to do our best.  The bumps in the road that happen along the way?  Are they actually good or bad?  We Don’t Know – in that moment what feels terrible may turn out to be a blessing or visa versa.
The only thing we know for sure is that events are fleeting  - within time we are on to the next thing.  When we pass judgment, this just gives us more baggage to carry on the journey!
And as my mom would say, “This too shall pass” and yeah, that’s also true for the good stuff.
But is anything actually good or bad?  PERHAPS?...... WE’LL SEE”

Til next time,
Sending you Love, Light and Peace
M

Be A Rainbow In Someone Else's Cloud / ...In Memory of Dr. Maya Angelou

by Meredith Blis on 06/04/14

It’s amazing how little things can make a big difference.
To be honest….
when I sat down to write this note, I was feeling a little blue…perhaps overtired, over-pollened with allergies and not my brightest self. But what’s amazing is that as I read Maya’s quotes, a little bit of the fog is lifting :) And that to me is the mark of a truly amazing spirit - Someone who is a bearer of light when our road looks dark.    
 
Dr Maya Angelou was truly a “Phenomenal Woman.”A modern day renaissance goddess via the stage, movies, dance, music, words, activism, education & the list goes on…..  
If you are interested, full bio HERE.

 
For many people (including me) she has been a voice of strength, inspiration & light. 
I think it is a great loss – but we are blessed because the beauty of her wisdom will forever live on – So I think the best memorial is to share her words. 
 

(it was hard to choose my favs!)






    



















And, Dr. Angelou, in my thoughts.... you are....
Thank You
Love, Light and Inspiration to you all,
Meredith

Three Secrets To Making Your Music Shine

by Meredith Blis on 05/22/14

One of the biggest road blocks I’ve seen (and experienced!) is that artists (and non-artists) have been ingrained (not your fault!) with certain beliefs - who they are, their abilities, & who they ‘should’ be.   When these thoughts serve our highest good, that’s a good thing
 
BUT when we hold onto mindsets that bring us down, they can erode both our potential and our creativity! 

 

Let me start with the story of Dyana.
Dyana was a young girl I worked with. She came to me for piano lessons. She was a very attentive (and bright!) kid who loved music. She was sooo excited to begin piano lessons. 
 
Fast forward a month….
It was obvious to me that she was NOT practicing (at all)  Hmmmm…..  Her parents were not forcing her to take lessons and she was always genuinely excited to be there.  So I called her out and asked why she wasn’t practicing. 
 
Her big eyes looked at me and she said,  “Well, people who are good don’t need to practice, right?  Only people who are bad at music need to practice. If I NEED to practice then that means I’m not good at playing music”  
A-ha!  That was it!  She somehow had it in her mindset that if she Needed to practice to become better then that meant she was a hopeless musician. 
 
I looked at her with sympathetic eyes and said, “Actually you have that backwards…. The people who are good, they are the ones who DO Practice – a lot – that’s HOW they got so good!” 
I referred to a local amazing musician whom she admired and said “You know, Jon?, right?” Her face lit up, “Yeah he’s really good at both piano, guitar and singing!!”  I said, “Do you know he practices everyday…. For hours.” (He was a friend and I knew this little fact ;)  she looked at me shocked, “Really?”  Yes, I said, he’s my friend too and I know this, he practices more than anyone I know!”  Needless to say, she started practicing and even started becoming a YouTube addict, learning new things online between lessons!!
 
This story highlights 3 secrets of music success
1. The Power of how limiting beliefs can prevent us from growing
            She thought she wasn’t good if she needed to practice – yikes!
 
2. The Power of how important it is to practice & show up for your art
            Once she eliminated that belief she blossomed!
 
3.  The power of having a team/coach/circle that supports your dreams
            It took another person, in this case her coach, to bring awareness to the         mindset and give her the tools to get to the next level!
 
I’ve included all the details of #1 in the article, but for #2 & #3 you can
CLICK HERE to Download the full PDF 
 
1.  The Power of Limiting Beliefs
Unfortunately most of us have them……  As we see in the story above, Dyana thought that if she had to practice, that meant she was a bad piano player. Ironically, this thought prevented her from practicing and actually becoming better!!!   And by the way, I have witnessed this same mindset in a lot of kids.   
 

Here are some other common ones that artists tend to have:
+  I’m not good at…..  (insert the thing you are most passionate about)
+  In order to be a true artist, I have to be a starving, struggling artist 
+  Either you have IT or you don’t
+  Good Performers don’t get nervous
+  I’m too old /  too young


Here’s the truth. The biggest IT factor you can have is the passion to reach your musical goals. The most successful thing you can have is a positive mindset  that says you CAN!

Rock Star Tip:
 Listen more closely to your thoughts.  NOTICE when you cut yourself down, tell yourself you can’t or criticize yourself.  You might be surprised to discover that these thoughts happen A Lot!  Your subconscious mind cannot distinguish between good and bad thoughts.  It just hears the thought, good or bad, and thinks it’s the truth.  Our job as Rock Stars is to feed our mind with the thoughts that encourage our creativity and our success.
When the thought happens, notice it & slow down…. Don’t criticize yourself (that gives your brain a negative subconscious message)  Tell yourself something like 
“I choose not to believe that” or “ That’s not true”  and replace it with a positive one
“I am a good singer and I’m getting better and better each day”
“I can make a great income being a creative musician”
“I’m getting braver each time I go on stage”
 
Helpful Hints:
+ Wear a bracelet or a ring.  Each time you catch yourself having the negative thought switch sides of the finger or hand.  As you make the switch you can also think about your positive thought
+  Do some reading! “The Power of Your Subconscious Mind” (Joseph Murphy) talks about this stuff in depth. The book was the precursor to The Secret, which is also a great read. If you’re not a book person? There is also a move version of “The Secret”
+ Journal!  When the thoughts come up, express & explore them.  For some people it’s helpful to figure out the root.  Or use it as good fuel for a song!  Writing about things can help us release them.
+ Surround yourself with people who support your goals and avoid those who don’t.
+ Most importantly honor how you feel.  Don’t add gasoline to the fire by criticizing your own feelings.

I’ve seen, time and time again, how these 3 simple ideas can help you to 
Make Your Music SHINE!
CLICK HERE to Download the full PDF
 
Here’s to your Authentic Voice!
Love, Meredith

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