|Numinous The Music of Joseph C. Phillips Jr.|
The Numinosum Blog
Leading up to my concert of Vipassana on October 28, over the next couple of weeks in regular posts, I thought I would share various details and inside information about my composition Vipassana.
vi-pas-sa-na, the primary accent is on the pas, the secondary accent is on the last syllable na, which has an ‘ah’ sound.
What Vipassana means
The word vipassana comes from the Pali language of early Buddhist texts. It means "to see things as they really are" but is often translated as "insight" or "clear-seeing." The type of seeing denoted by vipassana is that of direct perception or observation, as opposed to knowledge derived from reasoning or argument. Today, vipassana is a type of meditation that seeks spiritual clarity and insight through silence. While I have yet to do the vipassana retreat workshop, someday I do hope to find 10 days to try it.
How I came to know Vipassana
Originally I had no idea how to pronounce the word; I was saying vi-pa-ssana, with the sanasounding like sauna. It wasn't until we had performed the piece for the third time when an audience member came up to me and said that he enjoyed the piece and had actually done the vipassana retreat. At that moment, I realized that I had been saying the word wrong for a couple of years! Well before that moment, my first run in with the word was through an article in the May 8-15, 2003 Time Out New York. In the Chill Out section, the article The Silent Treatment by Jennifer Romolini caught my attention (it was taped above my piano for many years, as you can see from the photo). I was in the process of finishing the composing of the music and was searching for the right name for my baby. I needed just the right word(s) to convey the spirit of what the music is. Always a challenge, but one I love, I had a number of viable choices (of which I'm keeping to myself, unlike George in that Seinfeld episode) but the word vipassana seemed the most fitting, although it took a while to realize it for myself.
Check back soon for more tidbits about Vipassana! Just saw Julie and Julia last week and like one of those beautiful French meals or wines that Julia Child loved, Vipassana is best experienced and appreciated with your own palette so come out and have a tasting for yourself.
Numinous performs Vipassana
Wednesday October 28, 2009 8 PM (one set only)
227 4th Avenue
Take the M, R Train to Union Street
POSTED BY NUMINOUS AT 7:05 PM
To all things that create a sense of wonder and beauty that inspires and enlightens.