The Ghost of Elvis

Every day I show up to the page and see what it has for me. I say this literally, and I say this figuratively. The “page” might be this keyboard, it might be the journal I’m currently writing in. It might be the piano I am playing, it might be the music program on my computer I am using. It might be the voice recorder on my phone taking down whatever I express, whether through words, song, or piano-playing.

By extension, it might also be the things I tell the students I teach, or the conversations I have with friends or family. Each one will draw out distinctly different things from me, as conversations do for everyone.

In a sense, it could be said that expression is a form of channeling. That is, it comes from an impulse within us that we can’t exactly explain the source of, but which compels us to act or speak in some way.

What is this impulse? What is the true nature of inspiration? The word “inspiration” actually comes from the Latin “inspirare,” which means to breath or blow into.

Being inspired is having the breath–or knowledge– of God blown into you!

This seems quite fitting to me. I spend much of my life these days aiming to be guided by inspiration. I do not feel that I need to force things anymore. I’d rather take a nap, and then wake up with a clear head knowing what to do next.

This serves me quite well creatively. It helps with these blog posts immensely: I generally find that, given a 16-hour stretch of day to come up with something I’m genuinely interested in writing about, it inevitably happens!

I don’t worry or doubt or mistrust this process. The same is true when I set about writing a song or composition… or a musical!

I simply trust that the inspiration will be there.

Now it doesn’t need to necessarily happen that second. Sometimes it does happen that quickly. It usually happens soon after I make my mind up to work on something. That’s just how it works.

It’s like wanting to bake a pie. You aren’t likely to take three weeks before you actually put something in the oven. When you get the impulse to do it, very likely you’re gonna have a pie in short order!

What happens if you don’t start making that pie? The inspiration starts to fade away. Pretty soon, you’ve forgotten about it entirely.

I think it’s important for people to listen to their inspirations. Call it inspiration, or intuition, or clarity, or instinct, or impulse, inner guidance, or “Source talking to you,” or the ghost of Elvis, or whatever it is you want to call it! But try if you can to listen to it.

I think we could do worse than trust our own impulses. Much worse.

So what are you waiting for? Try it out!

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One Thought to “The Ghost of Elvis”

  1. FABULOUS TITLE, Chris. I want to read that book, see that musical!!!!

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