25 November 2009

Dear Drummers,

The letter for this Friday’s drum is below, but I do want to remind you of the fifth annual “Winter Solstice Blessing.” It’s at the Minnesota Opera Center. Seats are limited and we only have 2 performances rather than the usual four to six. If you really want to attend, I suggest you get tickets soon.

Click here to buy tickets on line.
Click here for more information about the experience.

Dear Drummers,
Welcome to the joyous jumble of groovelicious rhythmocity known as Drumming The Soul Awake, this Friday, November 27! (See the sidebar at right for directions)

Welcome one and all! Welcome tap-tender beginners and slap-happy whappers! Welcome all. Welcome to all of you who have made the drum your spiritual tool and those of you who sense that drumming might be a fun thing to try. Welcome to you who always want to get to our drumming evenings and never quite seem to. Welcome to you who have heard tantalizing stories of wild, laugh-filled, mystical experiences bursting forth in a Universalist Church basement somewhere in Uptown. Welcome all! No drumming or mystical experience needed. Plenty of drums for everyone. If you are not too tired from having been at Wal-Mart at 4:30 in the morning to catch the world's greatest deals on stuff, please feel free to join us. As usual we will drum for about 90 minutes. Then for those who want to stay for the second part, we'll enter into what I can only call a ceremony of protection for you, protection from the energies that rule December in modern America. Islam has a word for these energies: the Al-Nafs Al Amara. There are various translations for this, like "the lower soul" but the one I like best is "The Wanting Creature" - that creature in us that wants more, more MORE. Somewhere along the line, December transformed from a month-long celebration of the "One Who Washes Away Sin" to a 35-day invocation and feeding of the "Wanting Creature." The Nafs, of course are not only about wanting with all your heart the ITouch, the WII and the radio controlled Rhumba. The NAfs convince us to never stop wanting more and more of everything for ourselves - including more praise, more sex, more fun, more spiritual experiences, more status, more market share, more zeros in the bank account, and on and on. When we become wrapped in the power of the wanting creature, we forget about everything else but us, we break our connection to everything. Our culture calls it drive and healthy ambition. Certainly, as every wise person from the ancients to today affirm, there is a balance between wanting for yourself, wanting for others, and wanting not at all. For the next month, we will be battered with the power of "the holly jolly happiest time of the year" which is our name for the NAFs, which make us want wildly, and which also arise in us as holiday depression. So with some humor and some help from Spirit, we will try to strengthen our soul so that we may enter the holiday season with a calm joy.
See you soon, Jaime

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