“Be yourself on purpose.” - Fritz Scholder (1937-2005)
by Shari Watson BaDu and John J. Macionis
Daily life is a crush of conflicting demands and activities. How is a thoughtful person to find ultimate meaning?
This musical track, titled Movie Actors, leads us on a journey of reflection. This song begins with random sounds of everyday living. Breaking though this white noise is an insistent voice speaking the word “actor,” revealing a woman’s awareness of the superficiality of routine life. In our unconscious routines, she suggest, we hope to find “all the answers” at “some party, where the kids all hang around.” In the “dance” of life, we move to the tribal beat that may give us a felting feeling of fitting in, but we are left with the gnawing sense of living without higher purpose. Any effort to fill a spiritual void by joining others who share our condition of soul loss is condemned to failure from the beginning.
And so we live- dancing through life- as if we were movie actors, playing out lives that we know are fake. But the voice in the song also provides grounds for hope. Possibilities for transcendence begin with recognition. Gaining awareness of our situation allows us to attain clarity and creates an opportunity to move to spiritual high ground. For a fleeting moment a crack in everyday life appears, and we step up into the place of the observer, taking a noble stance, critical to conscious evolution. From that higher place, we can more fully assess ourselves, courageously affirming our intentions to lift ourselves out of the mundane. The singer states knowingly that “There’s a bigger part of you and a better part of me that thinks we should-a just stayed at home.” From the new place of the fully present observer, our souls clearly hear a call to be “bigger” and “better.” Recognition, however, is not enough. We must put courage into action to answer the call to change.
This transcendent response is made easier if we can engage with a spirited community of like-minded people who are also courageously answering their inner call, challenging what pop culture calls “FOMO” or fear of missing out. These allies will support us at staying “at home” in our hearts, trading the unconscious and fake party life (jobs we hate, social scenes that train our souls) for true conscious dancing to a rhythm emanating from the softness of our internal being. We must allow ourselves to move to a new drum beating the sound of change that will provide deeper meaning.
Sound master, McLean J. Macionis, understand the illusion of everyday life and ends Movie Actors with collapse, as the machine-driven rhythm crumbles. From the collapse, we find ourselves on a terrain with many possibilities. Now we must ask ourselves whether we rebuild the old mechanical framework, which is familiar but empty, or whether we muster the courage to honor what is “bigger and better” within our own souls.
The soul beat of conscious dancing can be found in the words of Fritz Scholder, a Native American Artist (1937-2005); in the wisdom he shared with a young boy in the mid- 1990’s: things to do…. “Be yourself on purpose.” Today, that boy, a man and CEO of his own company, continues to thrive being “himself on purpose” following the wisdom of his own heart’s dance. This is evidence that when we are in the flow of life, life flow supports us.
Copyright © 2016 Shari Watson BaDu and John J. Macionis