Dream word – TRUE
“The voice of the Lord is over the waters; The God of glory thunders; The Lord is over many waters.” NKJV.
The undertone of the overtone, or the rat in the scat
Overtone singing is practised by many peoples of the world and is the ability to produce two or even four voices from but one human being! The ethereal quality of such voice production has led many to believe that this kind of throat singing is indeed a metaphysical event! Some proponents go further, even suggesting that it taps into what Jung referred to as the collective unconscious, or, the collective human and racial metaphysical memory. In other words, some would have it that human beings are somehow endowed with a common ancestral memory, which can be accessed through over tonal singing. The nearest we come to this in the west I think, would be scat singing, the chief and most famous proponent being the great Ella Fitzgerald, whose use of non-lexical vocables in music, or rather, nonsense syllables, made her the most famous of scat singers! It was musician and lecturer Roberto Laneri, who suggested that even scat was a metaphysical event and that this kind of vocal of improvisation could be rooted in different states of consciousness, which in turn would draw on the Jungian model of being able to access the collective unconscious. I find that it is interesting that the association of such vocal overtone techniques have long been and continue to be associated with, not only performance art but also ancient Shamanistic practices. Well so what? Well, I do believe that there are three things here for us tonight.
The first is that I believe we do carry a collective unconsciousness! It is however not Jungian but rather Jehoviam, in that God has put eternity in our hearts and a sighing God shaped hole that only He might fill.
The second is that in many of our charismatic churches, the practice of having open and singing prayer encouraged by so many young worship leaders, means that the congregation often erupts into a cacophony of sound. This may sound metaphysical in connection but is rarely as good as scat and hardly ever as evocative as true overtone throat singing. If you are a worship leader tonight, then please remember that people want to sing! They want to sing corporately, and most of all, they want to sing sensible syllables of meaningful praise and practical prayer.
The third and final thought is that all kinds of overtone are usually carrying an undertone, are usually singing another not so nice tune. When we as individuals or as collective bodies even, begin to communicate with more than one voice, then let us beware of the undertone of malevolence that can so easily be carried on such dancing and deceitful waves. How’s your tone tonight? How’s your timbre? How’s the colour of your words?
Listen: “Therefore do not be unwise, but understand what the will of the Lord is. And do not be drunk with wine, in which is dissipation; but be filled with the Spirit, speaking to one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing and making melody in your heart to the Lord, giving thanks always for all things to God the Father in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, 21 submitting to one another in the fear of God.” - (Ephesians 5:17-21 NKJV)
Pray: Lord, help us not to be too scatty in both our praise and in our prayer, in Jesus name we sing it, amen!
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