Organ – To Muddle or Not to Muddle (Pipe)(Musicians)(Psychology)(Pain)(Strain)(Injuries)(Posture)(Alexander Technique)(Albuquerque)

by ethankind on April 7, 2014

This ebook, An Alexander Technique Approach to Organ Technique, is published on this website in a PDF format. It is very detailed and practical, and it will give you the physical tools you need to take the limits off of your ability to create the accurate organ technique you want without sacrificing your body.
This ebook is also for sale on all AMAZON websites in a KINDLE format.
Located in Albuquerque, New Mexico, U.S.A.

A great organ technique is a combination of two things.

FIRST, TEACH YOUR WHOLE BODY TO PLAY THE ORGAN WITH EASEFUL UPRIGHT BALANCE AND WITH GREAT TECHNIQUE. GREAT TECHNIQUE IS DOING WHAT WORKS WITH MINIMAL MUSCULAR WORK AND TENSION, SO THAT THERE IS NO WEAR AND TEAR TO THE BODY.

SECOND, YOU DON’T RESIST WHAT WORKS.

It is the latter that is a unique view of what is organ technique. The main negative result of resisting what works, is that when you go to an Alexander Technique teacher, you will slow down the process of improving your posture and technique at the organ. And the result of this on your organ playing is that you will inhibit becoming a better organist.

When I say what I’ve just said, it is obvious, but what is not obvious to the organist are the underlying thoughts, beliefs, and feelings that define what you believe about your organ playing and how you feel about the organ.

The reason they’re not obvious is they have been with you most of your life. Here is a definition of the unconscious. THE UNCONSCIOUS IS HOW YOU FEEL ABOUT YOURSELF AND YOUR ORGAN PLAYING, AND YOU’VE NEVER EVER THOUGHT ONE WAY OR THE OTHER ABOUT IT.

There are two ways to become a fine organist. THE FIRST IS A TO MUDDLE THROUGH, AND THE SECOND IS TO A CHOOSE WHAT YOU WANT TO BELIEVE, DO, RELEASE, THINK, AND FEEL AS YOU PRACTICE OR PERFORM.

IT IS AMAZING HOW WELL WE CAN DO THINGS, LIKE PLAY AN ORGAN, WITHOUT FOCUS, CLARITY, OR CONSCIOUSNESS. Let me explain?

You can learn to play the organ incredibly well if you start with some innate talent, have an organ teacher show you some basic principles of technique, put in a heck of a lot of practice time, and have a sense of what sounds good. Remember, I’m assuming you have innate musicality, so what sounds good to you will probably be musical.

I know this article feels like I’m all over the place, but I’m working out what I want to say as I write this. I’m stating a problem and I want to solve it by the end of this article. Here’s the problem.

DO YOU HAVE TO KNOW YOURSELF TO BE A GREAT ORGANIST? From what I’ve seen of some really fine players, NO! If the right steps are taken and enough work put in, you may become a fine organist. But this is not guaranteed, if you don’t know yourself. Why?

BECAUSE IF YOU DON’T LET GO OF BELIEFS, THOUGHTS, AND FEELINGS THAT COULD POTENTIALLY SABOTAGE YOUR PLAYING, THEN YOU MAY SABOTAGE YOUR PLAYING.

It is an amazing gift to yourself to really bring to consciousness what you think, feel, and believe about the organ, and what you physically do when you play. As a GIFT TO YOURSELF, sit down and write and write and write, thinking about the organ, how you feel when you play, and how you feel about your playing.

I’m inviting you to bring to consciousness what you tell yourself about the organ and your playing. You may be shocked at some of the things you believe and say to yourself over and over in your thoughts about your ability at the instrument. This shapes your feelings about the instrument!

Lately, it has really been on my mind how well organists can play with so little knowledge of themselves, how little they know about what they believe about their talent and technique. This has been in the back of my mind the last few years, since I read the Harry Potter books by J. K. Rowling. Throughout the whole series of seven books it is clear that Harry has amazing abilities, that he ultimately uses these powers to defeat Voldemort, but he is REMARKABLY UNCONSCIOUS throughout the whole series. He simply stumbles through doing what needs to be done to save his world from evil.

He does practice hard to get control over his abilities, but he never seems to have any sense of what runs him or why or how he does what he does. This is really demonstrated when Professor Snape attempts to teach Harry control over his thoughts, so that Voldemort can’t read Harry’s mind. Harry never really learns how to control his thoughts but muddles through and wins in the end.

Ultimately the Harry Potter series is about the belief that love always triumphs over evil.

As an organist, your love of the organ does NOT always triumph over poor technique and harsh thoughts, beliefs, and feelings that are not true about yourself and the organ. These are unloving thoughts, and even with your love of the organ and its repertoire, these unconscious beliefs may not let you succeed.

KNOWING THYSELF IS THE EXTRAORDINARY SELF-LOVE OF BEING CONSCIOUS OF WHAT YOU BELIEVE ABOUT THE ORGAN AND YOUR ABILITY, UNITED WITH PRACTICING GENTLY AND MINDFULLY.

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