insight: We all want to be part of something larger than ourselves – something greater that gives our lives meaning. Call it the desire for transcendence. We could even call it spirituality in the broadest sense.
One essential ingredient to group mind in ensemble performance is a shared sense of being part of something larger than oneself, like:
- the shared creative impulse
- the desire to create, express and evoke communal shared experiences (of intellectual and bodily joy, rage, desire, etc.)
- beauty whose creation depends on participation and cooperation
- living out a calling (being true) to what is “higher” in our shared humanity like the longing for beauty and the desire to express our shared humanity
- being a conduit for art (the performing arts depend on performers giving themselves to their art disciplining themselves so they become relatively transparent so the art make be conveyed through them without hindrance.)
- the performer must connect with their own humanity, which becomes a wellspring of energy for the performance. So it is that the desire to be connected and responsive to what is larger than oneself also means turning inward, for the “I” is but a small part of the human soul. Our ability to respond and tend to the intentions of composer and fellow performers is dependent on our relationship with “our own” inner wellspring: relations with the outer world mirror relations with the inner.