Today I had a revelation about women and didgeridoo playing. I cannot speak about all women, I can speak about some that I’ve met and that have inspired me to write this text by their connection between body- mind-didgeridoo.
Situation with women playing didgeridoo is rather strange as you can see. There are very very few women compared to men, in our didgeridoo society. I am not interested in discussions about whether women should play didgeridoo or not. The answer is so clear.
I have met only a few girls that had lessons/workshop with me. What I try to establish in my lessons as a base in didgeridoo playing is connection between mind, body and didgeridoo. But mostly it is actually mind and body. In other words, that your mind can tell your body what to do and the body does exactly this. You observe the sound. There is of course the opposite way going on, and that one is more active when playing becomes playful. To a number of didgeridoo players some of the very basic exercises I give are so difficult. And I mean sooooo difficult! This can last for couple of hours… or sometimes even much more. And the trick? The trick is very simple. It is about unlearning the old movement and making space for another movement.
It is mostly men’s problem as men are mostly the ones who play. But men have one basic difference compared to women. They are more in their mind. Logical, analytical, philosophical mind which has to say something about everything, put it into words and labels. Problem is that world is mysterious and wiggly (said in the words of Alan Watts) and can almost never be simply described. And even if you can describe the move, how does it help you do it? This just separates body from the mind. Body is no longer having any connection to directions of mind, everything is miswired. On the other hand I’ve never met a woman (although some probably exist) that puts so many words into explaining how world works to herself. From my observation women are less in thoughts, more in emotions. Which are some kind of thoughts of body. So I would say, more connected to the body in total. This is not one absolute point of view, try to follow the point, please.
One very basic example: You can see it in a disco=) See how many guys have the need to move to the music and how many girls. Girls that I knew… they always danced and danced… and only very very few guys I knew did. They would stand on the side, drink and look at girls. Some idiots like me would dance like idiots, but this is more of an exception.
And now comes the magical part. Women who come to my workshop often don’t have too good opinion about their playing. They would describe themselves as “barely surviving circular breathing with just a seldom sound that is sort of half ok”. I see they are often looked a bit from above from their male colleagues. Like we are in middle ages or something;-) And then… you have guys who can do “takatraktkawakatikasakatikawakatiraraakakakakaK!!!” and girls who can do “wouowowuwoou” but when it comes to do the basic movements, basic principles of breathing and producing sound with didgeridoo, these girls somehow manage to control their body and make their body do the work it ought to. While the guys struggle and struggle. Eyebrows move, shoulders shake, sweat comes out, but nothing happens. Maybe my sample of girls on the workshops is too small to give any conclusion. But I have a strong feeling that girls can drastically faster achieve balance in body in terms of playing. In general. I remember fastest learners being women, of different age, and in relation to how many women I had as students, this gives drastic advantages in some numbers relations. Quite crazy when you think of it.
This doesn’t mean men shouldn’t try to play.=) Even though it would be funny to start the rumour that you become impotent because of didgeridoo playing and that only women should do it… Men are naturally stronger and have stronger breath. Stronger voice… and maybe stronger everything. Women are naturally more flexible, more balanced and bring this richness into diversity of didgeridoo world. And I feel we really really miss this wonderful polarity of our female breathing and living companions on this planet.
So ladies, I hope you feel your wonderful power and that it gives you motivation. And that without anger or remorse you can join the show now, make the contribution only you can make!
Guys, I hope you will continue to evolve your inner balance and body flexibility to enjoy playing didgeridoo in its fullness!