Here’s an article in “Le Parisien” (major French newspaper):
Vincennes’ mayor put posters “Vote Yoann” on the walls of the town, on the walls of the schools, and organized a support evening! (before the contest finals)
~click on Yoann~
In another newspaper interview (before the finals) Yoann explained that he’s not sure why he won over his old friend and teacher, Emmanuel Djob, but that the people voted that way, and maybe because he (Yoann) gave love from his heart, and maybe because coaches Jenifer and Florent Pagny were also supporting him; and that he does not get stressed or nervous because he practices meditation regularly, and music is an extension of his self, making no difference if he sings alone or in front of thousands, and seeking to perfect, not just the skills, but to go deeper to reach the true self; and this approach to singing is not restricted to one culture or religion, but can express all aspects of spirituality; and he will continue to sing, and someday hopefully create a music school in Paris. (In one more article, it’s mentioned that he meditated with other contestants, helping to calm their stress.)
Shri Mataji (Nirmala Srivastava), founder of Sahaja Yoga meditation, once told sahaja yogi Matt Malley, former bass player of the world famous Counting Crows band, that if he puts his attention on the kundalinis of the audience, it’s much better than just focusing on one’s own performance. He often tried it, finding that his eyes would become cool and his heart filled with love, ‘watching’ everyone’s pure spirits. Giving creatively to an audience from your heart can have amazing results. What the world needs now, is love, sweet love.
In a few hours I’ll embark on a journey into deepest (lightest) Indian culture.What once took weeks can now be done in just seven hours.Visit here again in early April for the insights.THANKS!Till then, best wishes,Ed Word
(I just finished writing a two hundred page novel about a little boy who journeys back in time to ancient India — now I’ll go work on the drawings, steeped in that magical atmosphere)
It’s never easy losing loved ones (I’ve lost both my parents, Eric and May, as well as my lifetime spiritual teacher, Shri Mataji, in the last couple of years — as told here further down the home page), but sometimes, when the pain has subsided, it’s inspiring to come across unexpected glimpses into special forgotten moments with them. Here’s a recently discovered video that I didn’t even know existed, in which my father happily appears out of the misty past one very special day in 1983. I’ve posted the video here in its entirety because the meditation public program presented is valuable for anyone seeking inner tranquility and balance.
And below is my short image-compilation decorating a song (in praise of the universal, nurturing Mother) written and composed by Shri Mataji — rendered here by the bass player of a famous European gothic-rock band with some friends. (Another version is by the Vienna Boys Choir)
In 1995 I was intending to buy a typewriter to start writing stories, but someone told me to get a computer instead, because you can delete your mistakes. They suggested I contact a mutual friend who had computer experience. It turned out (happily!) that he was one of the relatively few Mac users in Austria at that time (there was one small Mac repair/retail shop in the whole of Austria then). I ordered a Powerbook 150 (with 240 MB — not GB — hard drive! 4 MB RAM, and tiny black and white screen) from the USA. It was the beginning of a priceless creative relationship which is still improving and expanding today. I’ve since upgraded my hardware every four or five years (my second Powerbook enabled me to taste —in color! — the early fruits of the World Wide Web) and got my first iPod in 2002, before they became universally popular. (And I’ve had my @mac — now @me — email address and web services for ten years running, which I can now even access from my ‘iPhone’.)
Ed's first computer
PC users argue that there’s nothing special about Macs, but it comes down to a simple preference based on the user’s inclination to work more with the left or right side of the brain. A mechanical (dryer) user will find Windows just fine, thank you very much; but a more artistic (wetter) user will enjoy the fun/intuitive/elegant style of Macs much more, smiling occasionally down upon the sarcastic PC fan.
We’ve come a long way along the road of creative communication. Let’s hope there may be many more Steve Jobs’ out here among the creative generation of babies and youngsters growing up in our midst.
Happy trails, Steve.
Best wishes, Ed
Ed's first wirless router/storage device
Ed's third of five Mac laptops (+ endless USB toys)
Over here in Vienna there was once a star shining with the intensity of the Fred Astairs, Gene Kellys and Danny Kayes on the other side of the Atlantic. What does it take for one human being to inspire and elevate millions of hearts? We can only watch and wonder as their mirthful light passes through our lives.
As our inner evolution opens up all that timeless potential which has till now been closed to most of us, let’s hope our world will see countless more Peter Alexanders setting new ingenious levels of simple en-JOY-ment in the coming decades.
June 30, 1926 – February 12, 2011
Peter Alexander, Austrian actor, singer and entertainer who was revered both at home and in neighboring Germany, has died, his spokeswoman said Sunday. He was 84. The star who symbolized the return of laughter, lightheartedness and the economic upswing after World War II (similar to the popular trend in Hollywood) passed away Saturday. Since the 1950s, Alexander appeared in some 50 film comedies and recorded more than 120 records. He was also a regular on TV for decades. Known as “Peter the Great” by his fans, his name was synonymous with Austrian charm and wit.
Austrian Chancellor Werner Faymann lauded Alexander as a ‘great Austrian.’ “As an artist, Peter Alexander made generations of people happy — both at home and abroad”. Culture Minister Claudia Schmied stated that Alexander was a pioneer of German language TV entertainment.
“Austria (and the world) is losing a great entertainer”. .
Along life’s long road I’ve often philosophized about the significance of birthday celebrations. Rationally they sometimes seemed to be funny, superficial rituals done out of habit. After all, what’s so special about a particular day just because it marks a certain amount of time after the date of one’s birth? It wasn’t until quite recently that I was able to see that, whatever else to the contrary we seem to be, human beings are vessels designed to hold and share tremendous amounts of the potent elixir known as love; and that, in an adult’s busy life (unlike that of most small children), we often need a special focus point in order to exude that pent up reservoir so that it, and our well-being, can be renewed. A birth day is the celebration of a loved one’s very existence on Earth — the miracle of a unique being developing into that friend in your life. The urge to celebrate this moment is universally inherent; a natural, inbuilt spark that ignites the combustible element of love (at least once a year!) Besides being a special moment for others, it suddenly brings to light our own living value. Just as the sun can’t know itself unless it sees its light gratefully received by all the flowers on Earth, we can’t know the reason for existing without the joyful kaleidoscope of reflected love in the hearts of those around us.
. I would like to thank the many friends all over the planet who thought of me with a smile today, including the hundreds who sent a few precious words of encouragement. I am once again reminded why I’m here.
“I am an artist and last Friday, after my meditation in the morning, I went down to Greenwich Village (NYC). As I was walking along the street I slowed down to pay attention to the trees, to see the change of colors that come with the Fall.
I looked across the street at a couple of older and taller trees and had a very exiting experience, an experience I had never had before. I looked at one tree and as I took it in, it felt like I could feel its very being, I could feel its soul. Then I looked at a second tree, at first not fully believing what just happened. Again, the same experience.
I knew at that moment that something profound had happened to me. As though what I’d been used to seeing was now revealed as something two dimensional and now I can see in three dimensional. But that’s hardly adequate as a description, the reality of what I experienced is beyond that.
There’s a way of relating to space and form that comes with my new practice of Sahaja Meditation.
Meditating helped me to get my mind clear of things that did not need to be there. So I am open to get new experiences, and to get back to creativity.”
Despite all the depressing, money-making headlines, you can easily find inspiring things happening between people the world over. Here are two distant examples of people giving joy to people. The first took place recently on the edge of the wild Canadian West Coast rain forest, where my youngest brother kept a secret from his beloved for years (that he was planning to propose to her when they finished their new house), and suddenly sprung it on her at the house-warming party in their new waterfront homestead. The second comes from China, where some old friends, forming an international group of musicians, did a free concert tour for the love of simply sharing joy with fellow human beings. In both cases, we discover that our eyes can also leak when the heart is overflowing (not just when it’s empty) …
Okay, not everyone can make this kind of rejuvenating getaway (it helps if you have some building skills and personal means of transportation) but if you ever get a chance, try something like this. A couple of weeks ago I loaded the car with tools, screws, brackets and wooden posts, and drove over to northern Italy to help someone build some steps … think of them as steps to a peaceful, stress-free state – that’s what you get from sleeping under the stars and doing woodwork in the late-spring sunshine by an ancient riverbed near the Mediterranean Sea. The steps actually expanded into a beautiful, split-level terrace, that good folks from all over the world will enjoy for years to come.
(click on the sunny Italian postcard to visit the ‘site’)
(a ‘Ganesha’ statue in nearby Genova by my artistic wife)
Have you ever been to London, that pulsating, international heart on the fabled Anglo-Saxon island?
My wife and I just returned from a memorable excursion there, and life will never be the same for us again. It wasn’t just the historic art treasures that lifted our awareness into a new level of creative enthusiasm. There’s something in the air and earth there that the residents probably aren’t even aware of – a kind of universal sweetness that penetrates the mind and heart of the innocent visitor. A childlike royalty and the feeling of ascending the steps of an ancient tower to view a breathtaking landscape. Simple, humorous melodies and lyrics that make you want to smile at everyone. The rhythm of the loving Earth-heart.
We came away with an inner lightness and optimism that we look forward to expressing in our daily artistic work.
It probably depends upon what you look for when you go there. Look for inspiration, and you’re bound to find it.