The Blues Chase the Blues Away

Legendary Chicago Blues musician, Buddy Guy, is credited with this quote. 

When asked how personal experience influenced his music, Guy claimed that to create Blues music you need to feel your own blues and be in touch with your troubles.  You don’t play the blues so much as they play you.  And when that happens, your moods and problems are momentarily relieved.  Something deep inside you is satisfied.

Guy’s quip reflects a psychological truism — often the way through our difficulties is to feel and express them fully — even become them, and ultimately to be transformed by them.  Music is one way people have found to do this.  Other forms of artistic expression (painting, sculpting, writing, weaving, etc..) and embodiment (dance and other movement forms) also offer this experience and possibility.  

When we let ourselves embody and become the spirit of our deepest troubles, we let go of our everyday identity and are able to pick up the energy and power of the disturbance from a new point of view. 

We gain something from becoming the blues that is far different than having the blues. 

Inner work offers an opportunity to feel deeply into what disturbs us, to imagine the disturber, to use the energy of the disturber and to find the value, learning or new perspective that the disturber carries.  

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Keep Growing

Yesterday morning I went for a walk. The sun which had technically already risen, was coming up over some distant trees. As I strolled east, a particular bush on a neighbor’s lawn caught my eye. The sunlight was falling on it just so that each of the leaves on the newly grown branches were glowing red. I stopped taken by the sight and reminded that a week before, around sunset, I had seen another bush of its type also glowing red. I tried to capture the then sunset-illuminated bush but my camera could not catch this amazing phenomenon.

As I walked toward this much larger bush this morning, I took in its entire shape and size. I noticed that the newly grown branches of the summer shot straight out as if radiating from the greener crown of the original bush like exclamation marks. They looked almost comical in their radiant and energetic spray.

I paused for a moment and held these exclamation marks in my mind. I closed my eyes and felt into those stalks with their glowing red leaves like outstretched arms reaching upward with so much openness and joy. As I did, I let myself become those open outstretched branches. I reached to the sky and felt subtle vibrations lifting thru my arms, hands and fingertips. And then, a spontaneous message came to me from this illuminated, open-armed plant – “keep growing.”

I thought briefly about the ways that I have been growing and made a mental note to “keep growing” toward what lay ahead that day and this week as well.

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Welcome to DeepWell

DeepWell is a place for those who are interested in learning about their inner wisdom — as yet unarticulated beliefs, unseen abilities and unrecognized qualities and then, applying these insights or experiences to current situations, problems or concerns. Using inner work exercises, listeners can find answers, solve problems, gain new perspectives, connect to mystery and go beyond their ordinary thinking and point of view to connect to deeply personal and universal truths.

Inner work is both a tool and a skill set for exploring your concerns from new angles to find undiscovered potential within yourself. As a tool, you listen to the audio recordings and follow your awareness to tap into previously unknown or less known experiences and resources.  As a skill set, inner work includes: 

 

  • Developing and using curiosity and beginner’s mind
  • Noticing signals in various sensory channels (visual, auditory, movement, etc..)
  • Holding signals in your awareness in order to study their presence and what is attracting you to them
  • Amplifying signals – for example, using your body or imagination to increase, enlarge, speed up or slow down signals
  • Noticing your own or another’s world view or state of mind
  • Shapeshifting or taking on the qualities, posture or attributes of other people, objects, beings, animals, etc… to gain new insights and perspective
  • Observing your or other’s state of mind and experience
  • Holding a point of view or state of mind that is not your own
  • Recognizing essential qualities 
  • Looking at your concerns or problems from new perspectives
  • Applying your learning to the life you are living

As with any practice, your ability to use inner work and your facility with the skills of inner work expands as you spend more time finding your way to your DeepWell.  Overtime, you become able to apply your learnings and discoveries more easily. With more experience, you may become able to use your awareness to create your own impromptu inner work processes to find meaning or explore concerns. 

Inner work can be used to address all kinds of human concerns and troubles.  No special knowledge is required. Your greatest asset in developing your inner work capacity is your openness, curiosity and ability to focus. Being willing to suspend judgement and letting yourself discover what is right about your experience at each step in your process will also help. Respecting your process and its limits is also important. The work of awareness is a life-long task and you may return to the same issues or stuck places many times in order to deepen your learning and relationship to yourself.   It takes time to develop your own inner work practice but I hope the DeepWell library and resources will help you!