Unexpected joy. It’s a subset of a feeling that many of us prize but haven’t quite defined. Programming our live events space during On Being's first year of independence, I've been thinking a good deal about how to create space for this elevated sensation. And I'm remembering back, thinking about all the wonderful flash mobs I've watched over and over, especially this very quiet scene on the Copenhagen Metro in 2012.
The Sjællands Symfoniorkester, aka the Copenhagen Phil, created a feeling of unexpected joy for the quiet commuters of Denmark (check out the woman’s expression at the 1:05 mark in the video) by playing Griegs Peer Gynt. But, how to capture the expressions and the fidelity of the sound? That’s where the brilliance of audio technicians from Radio Klassisk:
"The Copenhagen Metro is very quiet and the recording you hear is where the train is standing still. That’s why the recording you hear is so clean and crisp — and the sound is actually surprisingly good in the Copenhagen metro. We did this deliberately because we feel that a good sound experience is vital when trying to portray the actual experience that day. Further to the main recording, when the train was standing still, the recordings from the cameras was, as far as possible, mixed into the sound."
A friend once inquired if Gandhi’s aim in settling in the village and serving the villagers as best he could was purely humanitarian. Gandhi replied, “I am here to serve no one else but myself, to find my own self-realization through the service of these village folk.
~ The Mindful Way Through Depression
"Our wisdom is all mixed up with what we call our neurosis. Our brilliance, our juiciness, our spiciness, is all mixed up with our craziness and our confusion, and therefore it doesn’t do any any good to try to get rid of our so-called negative aspects, because in that process we also get rid of our basic wonderfulness."
You and I are all as much continuous with the physical universe as a wave is continuous with the ocean. You are a function of this total galaxy, bounded by the Milky Way, and this galaxy is a function of all other galaxies. You are that vast thing that you see far, far off with great telescopes.You are the eternal thing that comes and goes that appears - now as John Jones, now as Mary Smith, now as Betty Brown - and so it goes, forever and ever and ever.
To my mind, the idea that doing dishes is unpleasant can occur only when you aren’t doing them. Once you are standing in front of the sink with your sleeves rolled up and your hands in the warm water, it is really quite pleasant. I enjoy taking my time with each dish, being fully aware of the dish, the water, and each movement of my hands. I know that if I hurry in order to eat dessert sooner, the time of washing dishes will be unpleasant and not worth living. That would be a pity,for each minute, each second of life is a miracle. The dishes themselves and that fact that I am here washing them are miracles!