When Human Beings Take It To The Limit
In life we all have dreams and goals, aspirations to follow a certain path that will lead to social achievements and personal growth. We all hope to fulfill a destiny where we can put all of our efforts into one activity or more that helps the world in one way or another. Recently I went to see a musical group called Taikoz and I believe I was witness to a certain level of human achievement that was simply mind-blowing. These people have obviously trained and practiced so much that they have reached a level of mastery. They have taken the human life experience to the limit.
Taikoz are a multicultural group based in Australia who focuses on the ancient art of Japanese Taiko drumming. One of the group's members, Riley Lee, also plays a traditional Japanese bamboo flute called a shakuhachi. He is world renown for being the first non-Japanese person to be given the title Grand Master of this sacred Zen Buddhist instrument.
Let me give you an idea about this concert. It was held in a relatively small opera-style, three-tiered theatre and I was fortunate enough to get front-row middle seats. Throughout the evening the handful of drummers played approximately 50 different drums, and play they did! For over two hours they beat out multiple complex rhythms, sometimes whilst dancing, and occasionally intermingled with the most beautifully peaceful flute accompaniment you have ever imagined.
Now, what truly got to me was these people's physical, mental, and spiritual presence. The drums, some two and a half meters high, hit every single person in the crowd right in the stomach. However, it was the intensity in the drummers' eyes and muscle-strained bodies that infected the crowd with an electric energy that left everyone feeling like they had run a marathon by the end of the night. Of course all we were really doing was sitting down.
As the group assembled for a song at the front of the stage, kneeling down to play Japanese snare drums that would later take my spirit out of the body and throw it into thundering rain clouds, I saw the many faces of human perfection. Eyes like tigers', bodies straining like bunches of twitching ropes, sweat dripping in puddles around them; I saw and felt the feeling that one feels when you have taken a certain activity to the limit. Totally entranced, as serious as one could ever be in concentration, yet smiling now and then as the realization of what they were doing, the fun they were having, and the endorphins flowing like the wind through their systems all culminated into one beautiful feeling. I tasted it in the air. I drank it in. I connected to their energies with my own, giving them all my love and appreciation. Most of all, I was inspired.
Seeing people take it 'to the limit' can have a profound affect on a person- as you can probably see from the way I am writing this article when recollecting that specific moment in time. Oh, the music was powerful and enchanting and ethereal, but it was the feeling of human effort and achievement that pervaded the air and minds of all those in the crowd that night. I'd have to say, without a hint of doubt, that concert was one of the best, most enlightening experiences of my thirty year lifespan. It gave me the secret, special knowledge that one day it is still possible to make my own dreams come true.
How many of us know that we can become the people we hope to become? How many of us believe that we can work at something and in the end achieve a level of greatness? Our society is currently filled with doubt, fear, skepticism and cynicism. Please don't despair. We are fortunate that through the observance of others in our human clan, we can still see the potential that each of us has within. Why don't you become the inspiring source for someone else who is underestimating his or her capabilities? Why don't you be the next one to take it to the limit?
Check out Taikoz's website at www.Taikoz.com
Jesse S. Somer
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