Power Chords of the Soul- Part 2

“What do you see when you turn out the light?”

“I can’t tell you but I know it’s mine.”


As previously discussed, the Power Chords of the Soul are the long intertwining threads of thought and emotion we all carry. Usually, these threads are relegated to a background profile in individual experience, like a clock that’s always ticking but goes mostly unheard. Scientists agree that this tamping down of the familiar is a survival strategy adapted to leave our senses free to react to incoming stimuli, so we’re not fixated on the ticking clock while a tornado is bearing down on the house.

Certainly, subtle themes of thought/feeling, that are natural byproducts of living, should not eclipse more urgent concerns. But the more we zero in on and explore our own inner narratives, the more we can understand the force they exert in our lives.

The Power Chords can be the result of triumph, tragedy, or anything in between. They are often simply echoes of inherited superstitions. If a parent says repeatedly, even in jest, “Can’t you do anything right?”, that thought and its paired emotion can become an imprint that reverberates in a child’s psyche. Offhand remarks from teachers or friends, well-intentioned or otherwise, can find purchase in the heart and become part of a subliminal chorus of influences that endure for years. (Of course, a parent telling a child that he or she can do no wrong will also have a significant effect, only different.)

It is the nature of our emotional aspect to hold, and the nature of our intellectual aspect to ponder. I believe that each and every one of us has a private inner think tank running continuously, a subjective panel of experts cataloging and assessing data, weighing contingencies, gaming out scenarios, forming strategies. This isn’t wrong: we are vulnerable creatures in a complex world, and need to use the skills we have. But if I never examine or question the fodder of my panel’s discussion, the information my heart is holding and my mind is mulling, I may be making myself even more vulnerable by using “tainted data”, as they say. Only through kind personal introspection, employing the intimate knowledge of my story and emotional evolution that I alone fully understand, can I bring clarity and compassion into this ongoing rumination, which will take place regardless of the quality of data available.

Some may object to such pursuits as indulgent or non-productive. I would counter that, given the state of things, it is more crucial than ever to pull myself up from habitual reaction to echoes and whispers from the past. Bringing myself into “real time” benefits me and those around me, helping me become a more rational planetary citizen, and less of a malfunctioning ninny.

To be continued….






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