I’m finally sleeping on my own (straight, no chaser). Man, that first few days last week was a bitch. I thought I was going to die. Spiritually, I’m down again. I don’t feel any drive at all. I know this is a phase. I go through up and down waves on a regular basis. It felt like a touch of fall today. That always picks me up. I use to love the fall back in Michigan. I use to love starting school again. It’s more like the beginning than the end. The Jewish New Year, Rosh Hashana is now. A big point of starting the new year is the time of atonement. That’s when you take the time to come to terms of forgiveness with everyone you know. You ask them to forgive any injury you may have caused them, knowingly or unknowingly. This way you can begin the new year with true absolution and leave the past without clutter and bitterness. Makes sense to me.
A big week lies ahead. Presumably, this week we are doing the last regular gigs as DKT/MC5. Next Saturday we will perform the third and last gig with our old fave co-headliners, The Sun Ra Arkestra. Going back to 1967, in Ann Arbor and Detroit, we met and shared the stage with The Arkestra and Sun Ra, himself. This is the third contemporary bill we have played this year, with the first being in London at The Royal Festival Hall, the second in New York City at Central Park Summer Stage, and finally in Los Angeles at UCLA’s Royce Hall. It marks the end of two years of touring the music of The MC5 to the world and the many fans who never expected to hear that music live from it’s original members. With two of our colleges sadly deceased, we managed to deliver the sound that abounds with the help and artistic contributions of several guest musicians who have earned my undying respect and gratitude. Not only was our artistic experience enriched by these gifted people, we also bonded with an whole new group of friends.
It has been 8 months since I have drunk ANY alcohol and 3 months of treatment for Hepatitis C. All in all, I’m better off than I can find specific reasons for. Feeling like a trampled cat, and uncomfortably cast adrift on an unfamiliar raft, I have to believe this is the groundwork for a much more real and rewarding life in the near future. I have work to do -- some really exciting musical projects that you'll hear about soon. I have many things that need my attention. I think when you are trapped in a life of self-indulgence, you don’t really give it your all. The point is to savor the experience of your life with balance and an even temperament. Angela sent me a great little piece on moderation last week. It's from The DailyOM. I have inserted it below.
Health Through Balance
Everything In Moderation
Because life is short, the temptation to overindulge is ever-present. We want to glean as much pleasure as possible from everything such as what we eat or what we do. Or, conversely, we are so driven to stay healthy or be successful that we throw ourselves into exercise or work with abandon. But the true means of achieving what you want lies not in overdoing it, but in moderation. A balanced life does not lean in one direction, but contains a measure of each element: work and play; friends, family, and solitude; pleasure and abstinence; and necessities and indulgences. The ancient Greeks practiced moderation in all things, believing that in excess, virtues became vices. And so it is. Things that benefit your body and soul in one amount, whether it is medication, nutrients, forethought, or introspection, can be harmful in higher amounts.
The concept of moderation is embodied in the middle ground between all extremes and is thus a source of steadiness. It is simply the capacity to exercise self-control. Living moderately often means forgoing short-term pleasures in favor of deeper, long lasting happiness and considering all aspects of your actions. It also means never categorizing anything in terms of 'always good' or 'always bad.' Sleeping in for hours may seem a wonderful idea until you consider the daytime lost and the difficulty you may have sleeping later. Avoiding all sweets feels like the healthiest choice, but may not be if it's making you feel deprived. A strong sense of thrift can become stinginess just as a strong sense of generosity can become a tendency to spend beyond your means. The benefits of moderation are said to be a healthy body, a clear mind, increased vigor, and a welling up of positive emotions.
Moderation eschews rigid control in favor of allowing you just enough of any one thing for it to be satisfying, but not enough for it to be detrimental. Thus, it unlocks a healthy lifestyle without denying any pleasures, any ambitions, or your changing will, through equilibrium and equanimity in all things. Living a balanced life leads to rewarding experiences that not only heal and nurture, but can also fulfill you to a fantastic degree.
I found myself rethinking points in the article long after I read it. It’s a very cool bit. It’s short and sweet, and right to the point. Angela also sent me a link to a Hepatitis C self-help group web site last week. So, I’ll see about donating any of these installments if they’re interested. (Thanks lizbeth1)