Psychology and Music

Fulfilling your higher needs
According to renowned psychologist Abraham Maslow, mans highest needs are self-actualization and transcendence.

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Most institutions focus on growing a person’s reason, very few focus on teaching us how to evolve as humans, how we can nurture our individual potential, increase our awe of life, grow curiosity, a passion for learning and an awareness of transcendental unity.

5c.2From a young age we are filled up with content and concepts – mathematics, geography, history, etc. As adults, we continue to seek content, in the same fashion – telecommunication skills, IT skills, entrepreneurial skills, etc.

At the Musetude workshop, we do exactly the opposite, we focus on the human potential and the skills and  knowledge that are innately within us, becomes accessible. We are all born natural learners but as we grow up we forget how to learn and we lose the enthusiasm to do so. In order to excel at anything in life, all we need to do is get back to this natural state of childlike awe. The only criteria we place on our students is, “Stay happy no matter what”.

Even if you get whatever you demand, whether it be money, power, prestige or anything else, you will feel a constant sense that something is missing in your life because this ‘something’ is not related to anything external. It is related to your inner growth. Unless you become fulfilled at a soul level, which means becoming what you are meant to be, you are simply distracting yourself and will never be completely satisfied and peaceful.

We live in a society where we concentrate on giving and receiving only short-term, external gifts like cars, houses, vacations, bonuses, etc. But as human beings, once we have met those lower external needs and are living comfortable lives, we begin to want to fulfill our higher needs of happiness, peace, respect, love and selfrealization.

Most of us through unawareness get stuck in this cycle of endless desires and think our happiness lies in external pleasure, which is why we keep wanting more and are constantly dissatisfied. The only way to resolve this is by creating lives where the higher needs are met alongside with the external ones.

Our Grade eight students take on an enormous challenge when they learn the material that generally takes 8-10 years in just three months and yet they say that these were the best days of their life. When they pass the Grade eight, most of them don’t even come to pickup their certificates. Live life to the fullest for life’s sake. Just to be able to say “I gave it my all, nothing matters!” No reward or pleasure even comes close to the experience you encountered. This is what we call a ‘peak’ experience.

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5 Levels of Human Needs:
This pyramid of human motivation has five levels. The first is basic physiological needs, the second is safety needs, the third is emotional needs of love and belongingness, the fourth is the need to feel good about our self (our selfesteem) and the final level is the need for self-actualization. After the lower four levels are fulfilled, man’s needs move on to growth-based needs for self-actualization then begins to awaken. There begins an insatiable thirst for higher creativity and perfection in whatever he does. A selfactualized person is creative, playful, spontaneous, child-like, and zestful. For them, life is a vast beautiful mystery to learn about and explore.

When a person is self-actualized in one subject they can excel at everything they do, using the same method. Qualities like: being innovative, giving your best in every situation, taking responsibility for your actions, integrity and self-confidence do not need to be taught, as they come naturally to a self-actualized person. A person who has experienced this higher awareness will find no happiness in living only with short-term, external pleasures.

This short story explains it best:
5c.4A man found an eagle’s egg and put it in a nest of a barnyard hen. The eaglet hatched with the brood of chicks and grew up with them. All his life the eagle did what the barnyard chicks did, thinking he was a barnyard chicken. He scratched the earth for worms and insects. He clucked and cackled and he would thrash his wings and fly a few feet into the air. Years passed and one day he saw a magnificent eagle above him in the cloudless sky. It glided in graceful majesty among the powerful wind currents, with scarcely a beat on his strong golden wings. He swooped close to the eagle acting like a chicken and said, “you are not a chicken, become the eagle you are”. What does this chicken do to become the eagle? Nothing… it is an eagle, the first step is to become aware of his true nature.

Once you have experienced flying high like an eagle you will find no happiness in the pleasures of chicken life!