Who's never been much for dabbling ~

Sunday, December 2, 2012

We Can All Be One

In 2005, I led a high school indoor percussion group to a national championship in the Scholastic A division.  I could and have written about the unlikeliness of our program reaching this level of recognition, but instead, tonight I can't stop thinking about the theme of our show, which was titled ONE. 

On the floor, we painted a student inspired 1* and at the time, none of knew why, but just as an * usually means to look further down the page for further information, now I am wondering if our * was about more than we realized at the time.

At a rehearsal that year, I saw a member of our drumline struggling with a passage.  She kept trying to make her hands do what she could hear in her head, but was getting frustrated.  I felt for her as we could all see that she was giving it her best effort and knew she was practicing like mad outside of rehearsals.  In an effort to calm her down I said, "Don't get down on yourself.  It may not happen in one day, but one day it will happen." 

The next day, another member had written on our white board: "It may not happen in ONE day, but ONE day it will happen - S. Woodard".  I thought at first, "did I say that?" and then I remembered the rehearsal from the previous day.  We discussed that this could be a cool phrase for our season since our show was titled ONE.  I found a good spot to insert this into our show and not long after that added what would become the closer of our show: "We can all be one."  It was a pretty organic process and just sounded good at the time.

We had a great ride that year.  It was a talented group, playing well-written music (brag moment: composed by my son) and we worked very hard to bring the music and message to life in each performance.  When we got to the national championships, everything became surreal as our little group from Arizona was squarely in position to win it all and ONE won.

Why am I writing about this 7 years later?  Because tonight I couldn't stop thinking about how our message resonated with our audiences and the judges too.  It was a joyful, uplifting show, that ended with the group chanting, "I am one, you are one . . . we can all be one!"  No one in the group or outside the group ever challenged the meaning of the chant.  I find this interesting to contemplate now, as I know plenty of people who do not believe this message can happen and others who don't even want it to happen.

Is it possible on some other level beyond consciousness, cultural norms, upbringing, environments and such, that we do understand that we are all one?  Science now knows that there are 3 million bases in our DNA and that 99% of those are identical in all humans!  Isn't that amazing?  99% of 3 million - that's a lot of shared DNA.

Wouldn't it be amazing if we behaved like we understood this?  What if we realized how alike we are despite our obvious (1%) differences?  Could we continue condemning and harming human beings  that are 99% the same as ourselves?  Many in the consciousness movement don't believe that December 21, 2012 is the end of the world, but rather our rebirth into this very understanding. 

Perhaps our 2005 show was our small taste of what could be.  Perhaps we should have shouted, "I am ONE, You are ONE . . .

*We - ARE - ONE!" 

 Shout out to the staff and members of the 2005 Page High School Indoor Percussion program.  It was a forever memory.

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