Tuesday, July 17, 2012

One Lie Exposed

53c Detective Story Magazine (UK) Dec-1953 Includes My Body Lies Over the Ocean by E. Hoffmann Price
I'm a liar.  No harsh judgement with this statement, just part of my condition.  Grateful that it is not a major aspect of my being, and not at the level it once was, but the truth of the matter is I am a liar.  And those lies I tell myself are those that are most severe, if for no other reason than I believe them on some level.  Tonight at my AT class with David Jernigan, on of my lies was exposed.

David had been working with us and I was in a state where I was free in my body and mind was thinking constructively.  Alive to what I was doing and how I was doing it.  David invited me to get out my guitar while he was working with another student at the piano.  I'm still integrating the revelation I received from Bill Conable two weeks ago regarding the use of my right arm & hand.

David questioned me at to why I did something in a particular way. I responded that I was bring the guitar to the body, not bringing my body to the guitar which is a very valuable principle taught to me in Guitar Craft. As I began to bring my right hand back to the guitar, my old habit asserted itself and there I was telescoping my right arm to bring my hand into position.  I showed this to them and marveled at how easily this habit came out, after I have been so careful recently.

I then demonstrated the usefulness of my "old way" of using my arm and hand because I can get greater volume and hence have a broader range of dynamics available.  And then quite by accident I discovered that the difference in maximum volume I could attain in either position was negligible.  How or why I never discovered this early escapes me.  Perhaps when I was using my right hand in a position that I knew was better for my long term health, I did not want to find out how much power was available to me.  Then I would not need to do the work of letting go of the habit and cultivating the awareness and diligence to undertake this. Who knows.  But I did fit the information to support my habitual use.  In other words I lied to myself.  Years have been lost where this had not needed to be so and the recent suffering from tennis elbow may never have manifested.

Of course when I took out my guitar at home and went to investigate this further, at first I could not or perhaps would not attain the greater volume.  Persistence of habits is so strong and even terrifying.  I also know that a practice based on principle and intention can allow habits to be transformed.  C'est la vie.  Now my lie has been exposed to me and to you.  What's next?

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