Friday, May 22, 2009

Harmonica Healing

Last night was my gardening class. And since I'm too tired to write a new post, I'm going to re-publish my very first post that ran on February 2, 2007.

In the introduction to The Mozart Effect: Tapping the Power of Music to Heal the Body, Strengthen the Mind, and Unlock the Creative Spirit, author Don Campbell writes, "In an instant, music can uplift our soul. It awakens within us the spirit of prayer, compassion, and love. It clears our minds and has been known to make us smarter.

"Music can dance and sing our blues away. It conjures up memories of lost lovers or deceased friends. It lets the child in us play, the monk in us pray, the cowgirl in us line dance, the hero in us surmount all obstacles. It helps the stroke patient find language and expression."

While listening to music makes me feel good, playing an instrument is a healing experience. I recently decided I needed a simple instrument, which I could teach myself to play. So I bought a new harmonica and a David Harp book. Wow!

The beauty of the harmonica is that you make progress quickly. It's little so that you can take it everywhere. But more importantly, I had decided to add deep breathing and meditation to my wellness activities and the harmonica works for both.

I practice every night before I go to sleep and it allows me to breathe deeply, to focus solely on the sounds of music, and to smile. I sure hope that I become more skilled at playing the harmonica than I have at playing the accordion and the ukulele, my two other instrument picks during the last few years. Hope springs eternal!

FYI...By means of an update, my favorite instrument is now the Autoharp, and I play that best. But in the intervening two years, I've also taken up the electric guitar, and the keyboard. So...while I no longer play the harmonica every night, music still is a big part of my life.


Mariposa said...

I love Autoharp but can't play it...there is only one instrument I can play...the guitar! LOL

I finally fell asleep around 2, and it's 5, and I'm up again! /Sigh

Wellness Writer said...

Dear Mariposa,
I'm sorry you don't live around the block from me because I could teach you to play the Autoharp! But, maybe since you play the guitar, we could start a virtual "girl" garage band! LOL!


KJ said...

My oldest son loves the harmonica and started playing a couple of years ago. He prints all sorts of songs off the internet and teaches himself. He loves it!

Wellness Writer said...

Dear KJ,
What a great hobby. I actually took lessons for Blues Harmonica, but then decided I enjoyed it more for relaxation than as an instrument. But, I, too love it!


mmaaggnnaa said...

Hi, Susan -

Music is such a big part of my life, too . . . it is interesting to me that you have picked up so many instruments . . . and unusual ones at that! Keep the music flowing!

- Marie (Coming Out of the Trees)

Wellness Writer said...

Dear Marie,
Yes, I must admit to a fascination with "quirky" instruments. Glad to hear that music is important to you. Welcome to my blog!