The First Note

There’s something about the first note I play each day. How I take a breath, how the in-breath pauses, then changes to an out-breath; how the breath creates friction on the utagutchi, then resonates in the shakuhachi; how I can feel the vibrations in the bamboo; and how my breath becomes music.

That first note tells me a lot about how I feel: is the note stable from beginning to end? Do I have enough breath to play it as long as I want? Can I feel the connection between the breath and the music? Can I end the note with grace?

I open my beginner’s mind each day when I play the first note on my shakuhachi, and try to retain that beginner’s mind as I continue.

One Reply to “The First Note”

  1. Beatiful! The first note – what a wonderful practice to keep in mind. This is meditation for real.

    I have my first lesson with Kiku tomorrow morning! I am a beginner at flute, but a lifelong musician – singer and longtime meditation practitioner.

    I will add my email to your list and continue exploring your site here. Thank you!

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