This week brings something a little different for me, an original interview with a philosophically inclined band. Full disclosure: I will be attending their New Year’s Eve show in Columbus as their guest.
Q: I’ve heard that philosophy is an important topic to you. How would you describe your philosophy, and what impact does it have on your music?
A: Philosophy is the attempt to organize ideas into rational concepts, while meditation is experience without the organization of ideas. This might seem to contradict the idea that meditation requires discipline,but you can also use discipline to surrender. To be thoughtless you have to oppose control seeking mental habits, which takes discipline. Especially in today’s society.
We love the illusion of control and by thinking about the future and the past we think we can have control over our lives. Meditation is the attempt to break those habits, give up control and identify with pure awareness. On the other hand, when you think about philosophy you try to create theories and understand how things are. The thing is that how things are is inevitably different than the intellectual organization of ideas. Things are not rational, they just are and meditation is what allows you to experience that. You let go of your
thoughts and even stop considering yourself as a person.
Because the idea of a person is already an attempt to define the truth that can’t be defined. Being a person is something different than a person, because verbs are processes and nouns are ideas that imply certain characteristics. Reality is a process. Everything is constantly changing. There are no nouns in this world. They are all illusions. But you need illusions to think rationally.
For example you have the idea of a peach, and you need that idea to think about a peach, or tell your friend about a peach. But on the subatomic level there is no peach, you have particles that spring in and out of existence based on a probability distribution. This means
particles are nowhere specific, but are more likely to be found at certain places depending how they are measured or observed. If you keep drilling in that direction, time and space fall apart and you are really left with nothing but different patterns of energy – so you are
not actually holding a peach in your hand. You are holding a bunch of processes in your hand. Even on the cellular level the peach is not one entity, but a community of cells. A noun is the attempt to squeeze a bunch of processes into an illusion.
Processes constantly change and are never exactly the same. But how could you even make sense of anything if you were trying to think about things in that way? You can’t. You will loose your mind. To really understand it all you have to give up thinking. This is what meditation is all about. You go through your day not believing that you are a person but that you are what you experience. In this state of consciousness there is no separation between all the different process and you realize that everything is just energy organized into different patterns. If you think about it, it will be an intellectual realization. But in a meditative state this realization manifests itself as the feeling of love.
Of course all of this effects the way you play music. How could you look at anything in the same way after you wrestled with these ideas. When you play music you can get into a state beyond rational thought and share that state of consciousness with other people.
Moon Hooch will play, along with Electric Orange Peel and Devil’s Lettuce, this New Years’ Eve at Woodlands Tavern. Tickets include food and drink and are available by clicking here.