We love this short piece about the power of the drum, from the transformational book ‘Red Moon’ by Miranda Gray.
We hope you’ll be inspired to listen for the rhythms in your life, inner and outer!
‘The drum was a woman’s instrument, it’s shape evocative of the encompassing circle of the earth and womb, the circle of the seasons the moon and women themselves. The voice of the drum was the voice of the earth, the pulse of life in a mother’s womb and the hidden power of life within the manifest world. To beat the drum was to call the dark mother, the Hag, the hidden source of life within the woman. The beat became the repeating rhythm of life, the moon and the menstrual cycle of womanhood. When the drumming ceased, the natural rhythms still continued.
The phallic shaped flute was traditionally the man’s instrument. The music of the flute was the voice of mortal life, it played the melody of the manifest phases of the moon which was born, waxed and waned and died. The melody and the rhythm together expressed the nature of the divine. The melody of the individual cycle was woven into the ceaseless rhythmic cycle of the source of life.
Like dancing, drumming can release the constraints of the intellect and awaken awareness of the inner world. The drum becomes a link with the inner world and a form of expression for creative energies.
Many cultures have their own style of drumming, so choose a drum and method which you feel happy with. The simplest form of drum is a wooden hoop covered with a skin like the Irish bodhran or the instruments found in Native American traditions, and the simplest form of drumming is to hit a single beat with each stroke. Play with your drum until you find a beat which seems natural and easy to maintain and listen to the drum’s voice, the reverberation which continues after it has been struck.
Feel the beat of the drum as the pulse of life, of your sexuality and creativity and the voice as the expression and form which you give to these energies. Gradually increase the strength of the beat, keeping the rhythm the same and feel the creative energies flowing through you to birth in the sound. When you feel ready end the rhythm on a final strong beat and as you listen to the sound fade away feel the energies fade also. This type of drumming allows the energies to flow from the drummer and when accompanying a dancer, blends the energies of both drummer and dancer.’
Miranda Gray, Red Moon 2009 (revised edition)