Wednesday, 25 April 2012

Wednesday 25th April - Seeing, Looking, Knowing,

Seeing is not enough.
Reading a passage is only the first step.
If you don't see past the words and look attentively at the meaning, then there is no knowing.
If you don't know what it is you are looking at, then you can't learn it.

I know what it is I am trying to say, but don't quite know how to say it.

Teaching piano is an exercise in decoding a complex set of symbols, understanding the meanings hidden in each one and then learning all the implications of the symbols.

You can hack your way through a piece of music, roughly interpreting the blobs and squiggles as you wend your way along the lines, and at the end have no more knowledge of the piece that when you started.

Just letting the symbols pass before your eyes won't be enough to learn how to play the music.

It's a bit like reading a complicated bit of text, like a report, or a contract, or instructions, for example. If you don't take the time to stop and assimilate each paragraph, or sentence, or clause, you will be as ignorant of the content as when you started.

In our rush for progress, our target obsessed environment, our frenetic schedules, we risk losing the  art of deep looking, seeing through to "the heart of the matter", gazing, peering, until we properly know grasp form, structure, pattern, rhythm, meaning, and are able to understand, and therefore learn it properly, deeply, thoroughly.

How about a bit of Gray's Elegy...

Thank you for taking the time to read this - I hope I have managed to communicate what it is I am trying to say....

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