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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