The central path of the Sun,
Fires suspended over the darkness of Yin.
The Myriad things of the universe melt.
Advancing through the abyss
The knight uses a boat.
Krishna is an avatar of Vishnu and it was through Vishnu's perception that the universes were created. The Garbhodakasayi Vishnu lies in the Ocean of Milk. When He breathes He creates and destroys potential universes which are formed as bubbles from His breath. When Vishnu glances at the bubbles, each bubble he perceives is impregnated with a Mahavishnu from which a Brahma is born who creates the worlds within the universe. Vishnu, again, appears in these worlds as avatars for specific purposes which maintain the universe.1 Krishna/Vishnu/Lion is invoked now in this paper in order to help add sufficient depth and meaning worthy of a scholarly paper. I hope that I can, through His power, be able to create by perceiving.
I will begin in a less "tongue-in-cheek" way than I have in the introduction, by limiting the discussion, for the time being, to an analysis of the piece Soft Tablets which outlines the improvisation process that I use. I will then expand from this outline to universals and implications that arise from the process:
1. Make sounds/movements only in response to other sounds/movements. Treat the silence/stillness as something which is fragile and precious.
2. Love and caress each sound/movement and never do anything carelessly.
3. The world is chaos. Only your perception gives it order. Make sounds/movements that make sense of your world.
4. Do 1-3 simultaneously without thinking. As soon as you start thinking, stop doing anything.
These four rules were found by my conducting many workshops and performances in new music improvisation while using a variety of performance instructions mostly from Karlheinz Stockhausen's Aus den Sieben Tagen and Pauline Oliveros's Sonic Meditations. I have chosen what seemed best to "get the ball rolling," allowing the most freedom of expression possible while limiting those who might tend to dominate because of their own self-conscious behavior. The title, Soft Tablets, was chosen as a contrast to the idea of four commandments. These rules may be broken without the performer needing to feel any guilt about it. One need not think too much about these rules. It is fine if most of them are followed by most of the people most of the time. Each performance has been entirely different so it is difficult to give any general description about them. However, they are usually very complex, integrated, and surreal. The whole perceivable environment seems to be transformed into a sort of mythical underworld. Many participants of these workshops have exclaimed, after hearing the rules from Soft Tablets, that they had been living their lives according to them. I would like to explore how this piece could work as a world view. I will take each rule separately while broadening each into a more global perspective.
1 Srimad Bhagavatam; translated by A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada; ISKCON; 1978.