Last June I received a letter from my kids national school saying they had tried to find a part-time music teacher but could not find one. As I read the letter I got a very strong feeling to reply and offer my services.
Now even though I've played and loved music all my life, I've never really taught it, although I've taught on many other subjects – communication skills, creativity, accelerated learning, yoga, meditation, team work, peace studies and many other topics. Also my previous teaching / training had been to adults primarily in the corporate world. It was very enjoyable in the most part, paid well but there was not much happening there now.
I was about to throw the letter in the bin but something within me whispered "hold on". I could have so easily thrown it in the bin thinking "I'm too busy for that and certainly will not pay many bills! Let's leave it to someone else to teach the kids about music, I've more important things to do with my time! ". That of course would have been my ego's response but my Spirit in its quiet whisper was stronger. And I am so so grateful for that.
I did muster up the courage to put my ego as and call the Principal of the school and the response was positive. I sent her in some of my ideas and experience and she said she'd think about it. It was two months later before I heard anything and she wanted to give it a go and see what happens.
I offered to deliver two classes from 8.15am to 9.am, one for guitar and one for bodhran (Irish drum). Well the response was amazing – there were at least 30 young kids (ages 9 to 13) in the first class, noisy, excited and all over the place !!! So I thought it best to do four classes a week, Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday and Friday. That was September 2010.
Now it's June 2011 and for the past ten months that's what I've been doing and I'm glad to say I did not miss one morning teaching these young kids how to play their instruments, how to play a rhythme and other important elements of music education. And also very importantly I believe, I aimed to teach them the importance of nourishing their talents and that to become good at anything takes time, patience, persistence and above all practice. Like a flower who begins as a seed and needs daily nourishment with light, water, nutrition and in time becomes what it was born to become, sharing it's perfume with those who pass its way, talent, unlike what we are often lead to believe, takes time to develop, it's not a quick fix.
Well this morning was the culmination of all our practice – we delivered three mini-concerts in the school – one for parents and two for other school kids. As I directed the kids in their outstanding performance my heart was moved beyond belief. I felt such a feeling of connection with everyone present in what seemed like infinite moments in time, infinite moments of stillness, infinite moments of peace.
It was beautiful, truly and magically beautiful. And in my book, albeit that it is great to be paid for doing this work there really is no amount of money that could surpass the fulfilling feeling I felt in my heart as these kids performed in all three mini-concerts. There really is no need for any of us adults to be concerned about the next generation, they are the wisest yet! It is such an honor to serve them.
As many of the parents came up to me after the concert to shake my hand I was deeply grateful and so glad to have heard the whisper of the universe in that letter one year ago. As Kahlil Gibran (1883-1930) said "When you were born your work was placed in your heart" Sometimes it takes a bit of time and never forgets it.
I'd like to finish this post with a prayer I've written called May We Answer Our Callings
May We Answer Our Callings
May we be aware of how the universe speaks to us
May we take the time to listen, hear and feel her message
May we find the courage inside to act on her blessed message
May we realize we do not need to understand her mysterious ways
And May we allow ourselves to be instruments of her Divine wisdom
for the Greater Good of All.