Interview with Ojas Jon Martin Grøn
Ojas is a pianist, a music therapist and has for a long time been part of the sangha of the mystic Swaha. He has written a masters assignment about integrating mindfulness into music therapy, and now works as a pianist as well as arranging events and workshops with music, meditation and mantra singing.
This summer his album ”Light as the Sky ” came out. I asked him how he sees the music that comes, how it is created and how meditation and his relationship with Swaha has influenced him.
I had so many beautiful experiences with the piano as a child. It was wonderful that it was possible to create such beautiful music. So I wanted to learn myself. The piano has a large variety of sound and harmonies which awaken different emotions and sensations. The richness of the sound has an almost hypnotic effect, that draws you into the music. It can also be rhythmic and powerful. You can express many sides of yourself through the piano.
I don’t think about what I play. But I try to be in touch with what is there and wants to come. What comes out can be connected to my state in that moment, how I feel. It can be vulnerability, joy, wonder, or just silence. It can also change while playing, and flow in different directions.
Piano playing is a way to express different emotions which are held inside of me, and playing them is a way to let them go. Sometimes playing can put me in touch with feelings that were not so easy for me to connect with, some kind of underlying disquiet. Then the music can have a melancholic feeling, just as if the music makes me look and explore the vulnerability that is there, and feel that it is ok. But I seldom think about what I do and why, it is something intuitive, the music gives sound to what is there.
“When I have a meditative approach , it is easier to let go
of ideas of what is right and wrong, beautiful or ugly.”
When I meditate, I come in touch with silence. When I sit down and play from this space of silence, it feels like the music is clearer and lighter. When I have a meditative approach and improvise, it is easier to let go of ideas of what is right and wrong, beautiful or ugly.
Swaha helps me to come back to myself, to find peace and quiet and to be more of an instrument for creativity. To be with him, cleansing myself, helps me to find more joy and harmony, which inspires me to be even more creative. Swaha helps me to see the beauty in life, and then I can express it though music. He also challenges me to come out more, and I need that. Music is such a great way to come out and share oneself.
MEET OJAS IN MUKTI: You can listen to Ojas playing during Mukti – Music & Mantra weekend at Dharma Mountain 13-15 January.
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