What is Talent in Singing?

What is Singing Talent?

Joseph Shore

I have been pilloried by some people on youtube for suggesting that there is a genetic component to talent in singing. Here is my reasoning. As a voice teacher I often observe that some people have talent and others don’t. There is no way of getting around that. But what is talent in singing? At the most basic empirical level of explanation “talent” seems to be a predisposition for mind/body coordination in a particular activity; in this case, singing. Some people, very clearly, have it and others don’t. But what is talent at a deeper level? Why can some people study singing for 10 years and not be able to sing very well and others are ready for the operatic stage? There is some factor other than study of which we must take account. Nor will it do to simply say that some people learn faster than others, because that again brings us back to the question of why that is. I don’t know of any major voice teacher, impresario or director who disbelieves in “talent,” as a real factor. It seems inescapably true that at this point we are unable to accurately explain what talent is at the mechanistic level, but it is there nonetheless. Can we agree with this? If so, then we need to investigate the mechanism wherein “talent” may lie. It is fairly certain that talent does not lie within the physical apparatus itself. Both good singers and bad singers appear to have similar larynges, similar strap muscles, similar rib cages, etc. In an earlier era there was great hope in finding the secret of singing within the physical larynx but it did not pan out. Autopsies of great singers’ larynges looked no appreciably different from non-singers.

 

If we cannot find the location of talent within the physical organs of singing, perhaps we can investigate the area of the brain that controls singing.  Richard Miller quotes Dr. Wyke, an expert on the neurology of singing:

 

            “The laryngeal neuromuscular adjustments that take place prior to the omission of sound depend for their precision upon the acquisition and storage of an appropriate vocal control programme in the synaptic circuits of several regions of the brain–chief of which, in the majority of singers, is the right temporal lobe. The inevitable implication of this proposition, therefore, is that again (as with respiratory muscle control) it is cerebral cortical systems that the singing teacher is training in his or her pupils with the objective of producing more and more rapid and precise automatic control of the complex neuromuscular process involved in prephonatory tuning of the laryngeal musculature, and their tighter and tighter coordination with the developing respiratory muscle control programme.” (Miller, The Structure of Singing, p.199)

 

 

We must look at “acquisition and storage of an appropriate vocal control programme” in “the right temporal lobe.”  “Acquisition” certainly implies that there is a function in the right temporal lobe that must be “turned on,” while “storage” implies that this center of the right temporal lobe can and must “learn.”  We have here then, a physical correlative to the dictum that singers must have both “talent” and “training.”  However, I was most severely pilloried by my theory that “talent” could be controlled by deep genetic memory. It is only a theory but it fits well with certain facts and other theories. It has long been known that the right brain is the evolutionary old brain. It does not process information in the manner of the left brain. It has long been argued that origin of speech in Homosapiens is secondary to “singing.”  The great linguist Von Humboldt proposed that Homosapiens developed speech only relatively recently in our evolutionary past. Speech was “invented” and made use of organs designed to be sound makers. Speech also seems to be controlled in the new left brain rather than the old right brain. Certainly early Hominids had larynges, strap muscles, diaphragms, rib cages, but they did not use them for speech. The evolutionary cause of such organs was the need to make imitative sounds in pre-speech communication. The cerebral control area for this function would have been in the old right brain, apparently in the right temporal lobe. As I said, this is not new to me. Many anthropologists and linguists have proposed these ideas. In their extensive article,    “The memetic origin of language: modern humans as musical primates,” Mario Vaneechoutte and John Skoyles argue the case very effectively:

 

 



“Song (musicality, singing capacity), we argue, underlies both the evolutionary origin of human language and its development during early childhood. Specifically, we propose that language acquisition depends upon a Music Acquiring Device (MAD) which has been doubled into a Language Acquiring Device (LAD) through memetic evolution. Thus, in opposition to the currently most prominent language origin hypotheses (Pinker, S. 1994. The Language Instinct, W. Morrow, N.Y.; Deacon, T.W. 1997. The Symbolic Species, W.W. Norton, N.Y.), we contend that language itself was not the underlying selective force which lead to better speaking individuals through natural selection. Instead we suggest that language emerged from the combination of (i) natural selection for increasingly better mental representation abilities during animal evolution (thinking, mental syntax) and (ii) natural selection during recent human evolution for the human ability to sing, and finally (iii) memetic selection that only recently (within the last 100,000 years) reused these priorly evolved abilities to create language. Thus, speech – the use of symbolic sounds linked grammatically – is suggested to be largely a cultural phenomenon, linked to the Upper Palaeolithic revolution. The ability to sing provided the physical apparatus and neural respirational control that is now used by speech. The ability to acquire song became the means by which children are able to link animal mental syntax with syntax of spoken language. Several studies strongly indicate that this is achieved by children through a melody-based recognition of intonation, pitch, and melody sequencing and phrasing. Language, we thus conjecture, owes its existence not to innate language learning competencies, but to innate music-associated ones, which – unlike the competencies hypothesized for language – can be straightforwardly explained to have evolved by natural selection.

The question on the origin of language then becomes the question on the origin of song in modern humans or early Homo sapiens. At present our ability to sing is unexplained. We hypothesize that song capacity evolved as a means to establish and maintain pair- and group-bonding. Indeed, several convergent examples exist (tropical song birds, whales and porpoises, wolves, gibbons) where song was naturally selected with regard to its capacities for reinforcing social bonds. Anthropologists find song has this function also amongst all human societies.

In conclusion, the ability to sing not only may explain how we came to speak, but may also be a partial answer to some of the very specific sexual and social characteristics so typical for our species and so essential in understanding our recent evolution.” (http://cfpm.org/jomemit/1998/vol2/vaneechoutte_m&skoyles_jr.html 

https://www.researchgate.net/publication/286880993_The_memetic_origin_of_language_Modern_humans_as_musical_primates

 

 

They continue:

The idea that the origin of speech lies in our ability to sing can be traced back to at least Jean Jacques Rousseau, in the seventeenth century [73]. It was suggested by the famous linguist Wilhelm von Humboldt in the nineteenth century [94] and by Otto Jespersen early in this one [41]. However, this approach to language has been ignored in more modern times. Indicative is that the word `music’ lacks in the index of the recent books of Pinker [67] and Deacon [21]. In recent times, music has received serious attention by some linguists [48], but this was done within the Chomskyan paradigm and did not address the origin of language.

Just like song birds possess highly sophisticated syringes, there are very characteristic morphological changes of the human glottis and larynx, unequalled in any mammalian species [75]. Aitchison [1] remarks: “Our language has more in common with the singing and calling of birds, than with the vocal signals of apes.

The resemblance to bird song was noticed already by Charles Darwin [19]:

“(Language) is certainly not a true instinct [Note  4], for every language has to be learnt. It differs, however, widely from all ordinary arts, for man has an instinctive tendency to speak, as we see in the babble of our young children; whilst no child has an instinctive tendency to brew, bake, or write. … The sounds uttered by birds offer in several respects the nearest analogy to language, for all the members of the same species utter the same instinctive cries expressive of their emotions; and all the kinds which sing, exert their power instinctively; but the actual song, and even the call-notes, are learnt from their parents or foster-parents. These sounds, …, are no more innate then language is in man.

 

“The exact reason for the origin of singing behaviour is beyond the scope of this paper, but it is clear that the ability to sing has been naturally selected on many separate occasions – e.g. birds, whales and gibbons. Where this has happened, there have often been highly complex adaptations both anatomical and neural. The major idea here is that the complex changes which were necessary to develop an organ which eventually could be used for symbolic language production were selected for singing and not for speech. Convergent evolution to what may have happened to modern humans can be observed in song birds. Also song birds developed highly complex adaptations, anatomical and neural, as a result of natural selection for better song capacities [Note 5].

4.2.2.2. Music and mating

“Song production and song preference play an important role in mating in song birds. Possibly music had a similar role originally in human mating – and it still has to some extent. Below are some of the several possible examples of the central role of music in courting behaviour. In several cultures males indeed bring serenades for their beloved. Also, male singers and musicians in general exert strong physical attractiveness on females (some females even have orgastic experiences during concerts). Much poetry and love texts sound silly when proclaimed, but are quite acceptable and even touching and convincing when sung. Adolescents meet through singing, listening to music and dancing.

“Moreover, sexual selection of the ability to sing is more plausible than sexual selection of the ability to speak. Sexual selection requires only an inherited preference for singers of distinctive emotional melodies rather than good story telling – something that requires that language itself is first well understood.

“However, it might be objected that this fails to explain why females would also sing and speak. It should be noted that, while it is true that in many song birds only males sing, females inherit genetically the abilities to sing – something that can be shown since female singing can be triggered by hormonal treatment. Therefore, it is evolutionarily possible that a small genetic change triggered hormonal changes so that singing by females became possible, after it had first been sexually selected for in males. From considering some tropical song birds, we might understand how song capacity of females might have been selected for, eventually after it arose in males by sexual selection first.” (Ibid.)

 

Read the entire article and you will see that the Von Humboldt position is perfectly respectable today and answers a lot of question. Our Hominid ancestors evolved with organs designed to imitate the sounds around them. Homosapiens developed as a kind of “singing ape.” The control center for that function was/is in the old brain, the right temporal lobe. We might find corroboration for the primacy of singing by looking at the function of the strap muscles that suspend the larynx. 

The muscles which lower the larynx by a downward pull are the sternothyroid muscles, which insert into the thyroid cartilage and pull down towards the sternum, somewhat towards 7 0’Clock position, the sternohyoid muscles which insert into the hyoid bone and pull down towards the sternum, and the omohyoid muscles which insert into the hyoid bone and pull down over to the scapula. These three muscle groups we will euphemistically call, “the front down- pullers.” These muscles are not used in speaking. Notice they are large muscles so their function must be large for whatever purpose they were naturally selected. They are used in making jungle imitative noises or in singing. They are not consciously controllable but have a strong reflexive cueing from the respiratory system. A preparatory deep full breath cues them to contract. This shows that the primacy of singing can be observed within the musculature naturally selected. We see that the larynx and strap muscles evolved first for “singing” rather than speech.

 

The Sternothyroid muscles

 

The Sternohyoid and Omohyoid Muscles

 

 

 

The Suspension system

 

 

 

 

 

Dr. Van Lawrence was one of the premiere laryngologists who worked with singers. He had this to say about the action of the front down-pullers:

 

“In the last several years, we’ve become increasingly aware of the vital importance of the neck strap muscles (sternothyroid, sternohyoid, omohyoid) in high-range voice production—thanks in part to some work done at the Haskins Laboratories. These muscles seem to be necessary for stabilizing the main firm structures of the larynx so that the smaller and more delicate intrinsic laryngeal muscles can function optimally” (VOCAL HEALTH AND SCIENCE, NATS, p.49).

 

Dr. Van Lawrence cautions singers who may have thyroid gland surgery to tell the surgeon NOT to cut across the straps and re-suture. To do so may cost the singer his/her high notes. Indeed this connection was seen when singers who had thyroid surgery had their straps cut, to allow the surgeon more room to operate. The sternothyroid, and sternohyoid muscles were cut and later sutured back together. The result was that the singers lost some of their high notes due to the loss of some muscular function.  The speakers had no loss of function since these muscles are not used in speech.

 

What does this have to do with “talent” in singing? Let’s look at how modern man “accesses” right brain functions today. Much of all creativity comes from right brain activity. People go through a variety of processes to access the right brain’s ability to facilitate creativity. Most people have to work to learn to paint, but not everyone. Sometimes people just pick up a brush and can paint beautifully. The same can be said for other forms of creativity including singing. The ability of the right brain to “remember” how to be creative is what I am calling evolutionary memory. It would be reasonable to hypothesize that some people would have more of that than others. It begins to give us a deeper definition of “talent.”  In most people there would still be the need for training, but training might not be efficacious in everyone. If singing is a cultured form of primitive noise-making, it still does not follow that making primitive noises will teach someone to sing beautifully. Historic vocal pedagogy will still be required to teach most people how to sing. The advantage of our theory is that it also explains the few people who can sing beautifully without any lessons. Such people are there and we currently attempt to explain them away as simply “gifted,” by which we mean little more than “freaks,” since we cannot explain the “gift.”  The advantage of our theory is that it gives us a beginning understanding of the “gift.”

 

If our theory is true we might expect to find corroboration by looking at other functions in the right temporal lobe. It is well known that concepts of an afterlife go all the way back to our earliest Homosapien ancestors. Furthermore, at least since Dr. Wilder Penfield mapped the human brain it has been known that stimulation of the Sylvan fissure in the right temporal lobe produces visions and out of body experiences. In short the Sylvan fissure is the biological correlate to the seat of the soul and human religious experience. Its proximity to the area controlling singing may explain the strong interrelationship between singing and religious consciousness. Singing is often, in itself considered to be a spiritual experience, but it is also utilized in a cultural and formal way within the practice of religion.

 

Dr. Melvin Morse did specialized study of the right temporal lobe of the brain and came up with a theory which is certainly more radical than anything I have proposed about singing. He says in part:

 

    “Deep right temporal lobe and associated limbic lobe structures are clearly linked to human religious experiences of all types, including conversion experiences and near death experiences. Simply because religious experiences are brain based does not automatically lessen or demean their spiritual significance. Indeed, the findings of neurological substrates to religious experiences can be argued to provide evidence for their objective reality.

I speculate that our right temporal lobe allows humans to interact with a timeless space-less “non-local” reality. The clinical experience of accessing that reality is an important component in religious experiences. The existence of such a reality is predicted by modern quantum theoretical physics.

Such a theory has value in that it provides a theoretical explanation for many well-documented phenomena which currently exist outside our current theoretical scientific model. I will review its implications for a better understanding of two of them, remote viewing and mind-body healing.

For example, one of the difficulties in accepting mind-body healing as mainstream medical therapeutic modality is that there is no coherent theory of how it might work. If we accept that there is a non-local reality as evidenced by the Aspect experiments, Rupert Sheldrake’s morphic forms would seemingly exist within that non-local reality. I postulate that our right temporal lobe is the biological vehicle for morphic resonance, explaining how meditative and dissociative states can result in corrections to the body’s DNA.

This theory results in potential scientific studies that can advance our understanding of human consciousness and paranormal talents. I predict that even if my hypothesis is proven wrong, advances in understanding mind-body healing will occur in the process of investigating it.”  (THE RIGHT TEMPORAL LOBE AND ASSOCIATED LIMBIC LOBE STRUCTURES AS THE BIOLOGICAL INTERFACE WITH AN INTERCONNECTED UNIVERSE,  Melvin Morse M.D.)

 

Dr. Morse also tells us that he has developed “A How-to Manual to Understand
Our Right Temporal Lobe:

”I am developing a practical manual to teach people how to use the area of our brain linked to near death experiences. We evolved our brains about 200,000 years ago, and it came without an owner’s manual. We have many residual or unused talents such as remote viewing, telepathy, healing touch, and weak telekinetic abilities which are linked to this same brain area. Anyone can learn to use this latent area of our brain and have spiritual and near death experiences.”

 

All of these intriguing ideas about creative ability and the right temporal lobe do not prove my theory about singing and evolutionary memory but they certainly are consistent with it.

In summary, it is my theory that Homosapiens evolved as a form of singing ape. Our vocal organs evolved first to enable us to imitate the sounds in our environment. Environmental, imitative sounds quickly evolved into a type of singing or vocal utterance which was the precursor to the invention of speech. Speech made use of organs designed for a grander purpose. When speech was invented it quickly became dominant and the older function of singing became more ritualized. Theoretically everyone should be able to sing. But practically some people can access the right temporal lobe control area more than others, just as some people can paint, sculpt, or do Zen better than others. This ability to access the right temporal control area used for singing, I have called evolutionary or genetic memory. Perhaps there are indeed better techniques to give us more control of the right temporal lobe, as Dr. Morse suggests. If so, we should use them in addition to historic vocal pedagogy to enable people to sing.

 

Joseph Shore

 

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Not Two!

Love is the Home we seek for. In everyone and everything there is this memory of Home that we seek for. We have almost forgotten it but not quite. We cannot forget it. It calls to us like a whisp of a melody almost forgotten and yet too dear and too close to us to forget it. It is the certitude that we seek. It is the perfect lover and companion that we search for. It is the almost forgotten country from which we all came. Consciousness obscures it and makes us think there is a great distance between us. If there are two–I, as a consciousness, and Home as a place, then there is distance and time. Then there is journey and the perception of need. All of this perception of two is false. There is only “Advaita,” not two. The Home that we all remember is unconscious love, perfectly unconditional because it is impersonal, and full of Truth and Knowledge, an impersonal universe of spirit which is our only True Self. Lots of people go around preaching that “consciousness is god.” Well if it is dear ones, it is a pitiful god because it would mean that forever there is duality, that nothing exists without an opposite. There is no Ground of all Being! Being would exist only to be threatened by the other! Were this the nature of Truth, this would indeed be madness. We must awaken to see that “Nothing real can be threatened. Nothing unreal exists. Herein lies the peace of God.” That Peace is the Home we seek and the love that fills it. Consciousness is the land of dreams, the land of separation. In this dream “I” proclaim I exist as an observer and the universe is outside of me to be observed. In consciousness I am separate from God and every other sentient being. “I” as a consciousness am dreaming and in the dream I search for Home and love. How do I awaken from consciousness? You see I do not want to promote more consciousness! That just puts me into deeper dream states which are all illusions!! God is not consciousness. Consciousness is the dream that “I” can separate from God and stand apart from Him and observe Him! Consciousness is the original madness!! There is no original sin apart from this original madness In God’s world, there is only unconscious, impersonal, Love which is also Truth and Knowledge. As long as you believe your little body self is real you will not be able to find this Home that you long for. The first phase of awakening comes when the fabricated little “I” can say, “I am not a body. I am free, for I am just as God created me; spirit, not physical, a part of Him, not separate, connected to all things that think they are separate and feel themselves in need. While I seem to be in this body I will serve them by forgiveness, love and kindness. I will awaken because the great time has come!!!!!” 

(many concepts and terms I used here come from ACIM)

bench into eternity
We are on the bottom rung now on the ladder that leads back to our Home. As we came down the ladder by first becoming lost in the dream of consciousness, we go back up that ladder by rising higher in awareness. As we do we may catch glimpses or have experiences of a foretaste of our True character. Truth may break in on us, a little at a time. These little periods of enlightenment cannot yet stay but as long as they last they give us a propulsion upwards.
In the early fall of 2012, as I was preparing to go to Brazil to see John of God, I was visited by a change in consciousness which can only be described as a foretaste of enlightenment. It felt like Heaven right here.  I wrote about it this way then:

“A stillness has come to me which is unlike anything I have experienced before. The Love of God has come into my mind to take up abode. I am not alone, nor lonely, nor do I ever feel bored. I am actively experiencing the Love of God in my mind. I need no TV. The thought of it is humorous. I need nothing. I eat my meals while looking happily out my window at the beautiful clouds and mountains. I walk to the grocery store, talk to the street beggars with a smile and love in my heart while I pull out the change in my pocket and give it to them. I come back home and look at the clouds and the mountains and am more than content. Songs play in my mind of peace and the love of God. I write on Facebook, email friends, and pet the cat. What more need there be? I am still inside and need no entertainment. I know that I am a part of God and share his holiness and glory. I am at the gates of heaven. This is a stillness which I have not had before. This is not the stillness from nature, as beautiful as that is. This is the Love of God which has taken up abode in my heart and I want for nothing more; not fame, nor riches, not wife, nor position. I have found peace and happiness within the Love of God. And I am not alone here in my mind. You are here too. We are all one Mind and we are almost home. We are the Glory of God.
Pray for the Glory of God to fall, as we awaken to Self, One with God. In the Glory cloud will all our lessons be reviewed. In the Glory cloud will we climb up the ladder. In the Glory cloud will we see Jesus. In the Glory cloud we will know our Home. Soon we will be done with the troubles of the world. Soon we will just be what we are. We are the Glory cloud of God.

“The Glory of God is all I need.
The Glory of God is my Home.
The Glory of God is my peace.
The Glory of God removes all illusions,
None can stand in The Glory of God.
The Glory of God is all I want.
The Glory of God is all I seek.
The Glory of God is the will of my spirit.
The Glory of God is the answer to my deepest question:
“Who am I?”
I am the Glory of God,
As rays from the sun,
I am His Glory.
I am The Glory of God.

“I eat my food and pass my water. I pet the cat and watch the clouds, gather in the twilight and welcome the night.

“I teach my students and just stay in this Love which I never, ever, want to leave. It is my Home. It is my Highest Self. I am where I belong, and I am far from alone. You are here with me, and you, and you, and you, and you. “We are all here, Father. The Mind which you created as One has come Home to you. And you know we never really left. We travelled only in dreams while safely in your embrace. Our Love, Our Light will shine forever with You. And the Love you have for your Son is returned back to you as pure as it was when you created Him. Our song, in praise to You, is all that will be heard.”

“I thought that, for me, the most difficult part of staying in right-mindedness, and continuing my experience of the Love of God in my daily life would be to control reactions. Reactions can send you right back to wrong mindedness. But I have found that the Love of God actually gently protects me from reactions. I mean, there is just so much space and timelessness! I stood in a long line at the IGA today, without any temptation to lose patience. I just listened to the people’s thoughts and feelings as I waited. That’s another thing about the real Love of God…It is not evangelistic! I had no urge to try to persuade people! The Love of God honors our sleeping brothers! It is like Tara Singh said, “Some of our brothers are deeply asleep. That’s alright. Let them sleep. They will awaken.” The Love of God knows no pressure.

“Today I awakened from sleep rather early for me. I thought, ‘Jesus why am I up so early.’ I soon found out there was work he wanted me to do. This is life in the Spirit. We listen to an inner Voice that always speaks for truth, and we happily do as the Voice tells us. We have learned over the years, that those who obey the inner Voice will know the Love of God! May you know it today!! Peace.

That was my sharing with you. For six weeks the Christ Mind was almost totally me. It was the culmination of my life. Eventually, though, I faded back into Joe Shore, more loving, of course, and with higher gifting, but Joe Shore nonetheless.”

At first, I agonized over losing this state, but then it came to me that it had been a precious gift which I could not fully hold yet. But one day I shall be able to go into that

state and remain there…with all of you, my brothers! ❤

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What is truth in art?

I have previously written about the relationship of art, form and meaning. The article is in this blog. I hope you will refer to it.  Let us take as an example Schubert’s great song cycle Die Winterreise. These poems by Wilhelm Mueller take us past representationalism in poetry to a true existential meaning regarding the feelings within unrequited love. It is not enough to sing the notes Schubert has written and the words Mueller has written. That was the old way. Great voices sang these songs with individual word coloring and that was supposed to be art. It was art in a way, but far from all that the song cycle requires. The greater the work the more it draws from the performer the need to put existential truth into it. The singer must become this man who has been so hurt in love, and all without stage movement or costumes. He must use his mind to connect with the character who is saying these words that Mueller and Schubert have put into his mouth. The Stanislavsky method is perfect for just this demand. Just so, let me offer a few methods to help the singer bring Truth to this great work and deliver it to the people.

If you don’t speak German you will need to translate each word and write the meaning of it in your language. In my case that would be English. Then you take 3X5 cards and make flash cards. On one side you put the German word, and on the other side the English meaning. You then drill yourself so that when you sing the German words the English meaning will register in your mind. After a while, your brain will start to think in the German words. Next you read the poems and try to give a meaning to each phrase. This is called oral interpretation of literature. Only when you can deliver the poem with meaning do you begin to sing. Now you have the abstract meaning of the notes and rhythms to suggest to your mind how the character’s mind might insinuate each phrase. You make a choice before each phrase what your insinuation is. After doing a couple of songs in this way, it will come to you that you need to use your imagination to create a back story for this person who is undergoing this Die Winterreise. You write out a biography for him: his name, what happened to him in his early life; all of the psychological information that would make him come to this winterreise. Now you have a back story in your mind. We call these virtual imaginings “internal objects.” Your mind is filled with them as you begin to choose how you will intend each phrase. These intentions are called “the dramatic beat,” and they have to happen BEFORE the musical beat. Your mind must be working faster than the musical beat. If you let the music hypnotize you into its beat you will become a robot and sing without dramatic beats, choices, insinuations. That is what we normally see today.  It will surely come to you that the character is undergoing severe feelings from experiences you have never had. Therefore you must find a way of identifying within yourself the essence of these feelings. That is what Stanislavsky meant by “substitutions.” You may have never been so desperately in love and hurt so deeply as this person but just as surely there are things that have happened to you which are of the same essence. Can you remember your first girl friend and how awful you felt when she broke off with you in grade school? Bring up that experience emotionally. Relive it and then sing a phrase thinking of that. It will bring life to it. Each song contains many such needs for substitutions. You rehearse them until you experience the essence of the substitution without having to think about “Peggy” rebuffing your advances in the second grade!!! The substitution doesn’t have to be of the same strength as the character’s, although the stronger the better, it must simple convey the essence of the emotion.

The essence of the method is to STAY CONSCIOUS within the events of the breath, the dramatic choice and the experience the words convey. Don’t let the music hypnotize you into just a singing machine! Let your mind be filled with internal objects before you begin to sing and while you are singing. It will help you to keep the mind moving faster than the music and give you the ability to chose a meaning for each phrase. When the audience experiences performance this way, it is far more gripping and moving than just the experience of hearing a nice voice sing words with a little bit of word coloring!!!!!!!

Remembering

Years before I ever knew about A Course in Miracles, I wrote this paragraph about my conclusions at that time about the metaphysics of the universe (or multiverse, if there are many). It is amazing how little it differs from the teachings of A Course in Miracles which I use to this day as my metaphysical framework. This is what I wrote:

“The multiverse that God’s Son created (and sustains) is not a “thing,” much less a collection of stuff floating in a vacuous nothing. The multiverse is a holographic training center for consciousness. We seem to be separate beings in a solid world but this is just part of the illusion. We are more like nodes of energy within one system, a complex version of Christmas Tree lights strung in parallel. Each “light” is a node of energy within the whole web.

The system is complex because it is holographic. The multiverse is a program that God’s Son is running. You and I are holographic characters within that program. What our existence is like apart from this program cannot be directly known. It can only be intuited or directly revealed to us by the Programmer. In the hologram known as the multiverse we appear to be separate individuals learning certain lessons. Individual life appears to be a consciousness training school where we learn by relationships. What it really and fully is cannot be known at this level. At each reboot of the program (reincarnation) we seem to lose memory of our previous classes. But some hints of our previous classes come to us as deja-vu or deep intuition. It may be that when we have reached a certain number of re-entries that deja-vu will deepen into a fuller awareness of the whole process and the part we are playing. But that fuller awareness could happen at any moment.

If the multiverse is a hologram then the obvious question comes up as to whether there is free will. Is evil real or just part of the program? It is quite possible to have a program which allows for some interaction within certain parameters. Individuals can make some choices which affect their “lives” in the hologram, but these choices do not affect reality.
The name of the program is “Heavens and Earth,” and in the beginning, God’s Son created it. He also created us, which means we are his thoughts. Is it any wonder that his thoughts seem like individual nodes of energy within a web? From this point onwards in the explanation of things we must explore intuition and to do that we use myth.

The creator of the holographic multiverse program has written in a part for himself. He comes into the program to give us the way to complete the program and end it. On this planet his name was Jesus.

His also gives us clues all throughout the program (The Holy Spirit), tips that spark our intuition. Another major clue is the program itself. On earth he has created a holographic world which, if you can see past the apparent brutality of nature, is so amazingly beautiful, filled with animals of all different shapes and sizes, and a vegetable world with just as much appearance of design. The natural world’s great beauty, organization and design are there to evoke deep intuition and some understanding that the holographic world we live in is a very important program. Seen in its beauty, rather than its brutality, the natural world gives us deep intuition of the Designer, His majesty and love.

Nature can be the truest church. The birds are the choir, and there is never a sour note. Sun, water, and life abounding are the preacher, and the sermon is never boring. How magnificent the Creator must be if I can see him behind the design of a mallard or a wood duck, a beaver, a trout, a redwing blackbird, and you and me. Once we awaken this much the world changes.”

Joseph Shore (2)

Let it Shine

How to stay “Light” in a dark world—the world is very dark right now. The dream of the world has taken a turn back into fear. One can see it in the reflections of the world on TV and movies. Never has there been such fascination with darkness. It would seek to beguile you. But if you have seen your own inner Light you need but use the awareness that your Light gives. Don’t watch that dark TV show. Don’t let it fascinate you. Turn the TV off and go into your own Light again. We are the Lighthouses of the world. It is up to us to bear the Light in a world that knows neither Light nor Love unless we provide it. And provide it we can. Each of us contains the Whole of the Son of God within himSelf. We are each of us the radiance of God and we can awaken each other from the fearful dreams God’s Son has made in his mistaken belief in terror. Terror would indeed be terrible were it true. Then that which is Real could be threatened and there would be no firm Ground of all Being. Thank God that is not true!!! Only in a nightmare could it seem to be true. In Truth, where you and I and all things have our being, Nothing Real can be threatened. Nothing unreal exists. Herein does indeed lie the Peace of God. That Peace I must bring with me into this terrified world. That Peace must shine in me! “This little light of mine, I’m gonna let it shine.”