Monday, November 1, 2010

The Arts: Exercise for the Soul

Artist Raechel Running and Nick Reznick know how to enjoy the arts.
  Last week was overbooked for everyone I knew, including myself.  Who determined that Halloween, Homecoming, and all of the college board meetings would be simultaneous?!

  Life is so busy that it feels like there's not enough time for cultural events.  Au contraire, pussycat, (I find myself saying in the mirror.)

  When life gets overwhelming, we need to take care of both body and soul.  Like exercise, cultural events are exactly what you need to engage in to be able to keep it up.

  Exercise takes care of your body and gives you more energy.  It insures that you are a smoothly operating bodacious body machine, so that you can power through all those late night Halloween parties and then sit upright through all the board meetings the next day.  

  In the same way, music and art take care of your soul.  They let you relax and release all the stress of the planning, presenting, and partying of the week before.  Beats and brushstrokes can help you get in touch with your inner demons--because they were created by people living this human life.  You can acknowledge them, and then release them!

  For instance, I knew that going to the Flagstaff Symphony Orchestra on Friday night was going to come at the end of a very long day and week.  But I also knew that this was time that I had allotted to sit with myself and relax.  All I had to do for 2 hours was hear the music.  I could daydream, I could think about work, and then I could hear the sympathetic response of the orchestra.  For instance, they played Haydn's "Sturm und Drang"  ("Stress and Storm".)  Silly me, but I find it comforting that music can so perfectly express things like work stress.  It makes it kind of romantic, don't you think?  Like, we're all in this together.

  After the symphony, I felt like I often feel after being outside in nature; I was replenished, refreshed.  I think that beauty has amazing restorative effects, whether it be in the clouds and the trees, or in a museum or auditorium.

  As we rev up towards the holidays, and everyone starts to really feel the scheduling burn, I encourage you to take care of yourself!  Go exercise and take care of your body, yes, but don't forget to drink in some cultural events and take care of your soul!

  Flex your art muscles and make the world a better place.

"Ole!"  Jason gets splendiferous after partaking of the symphony. 

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