I can feel certain sounds as they course through me like a sign wave of joy. At just the right frequency, goosebumps.
This sound was more than perfect resonation, this sound was sanctuary and elemental joy I didn’t know existed. Magic.
A blessed combination of the Universe working through members of the Nerd Herd with love, my Monkey brain and innocent curiosity gifted me in a most wonderful way a moment I am grateful for and feel more than obliged to share.
I was sitting in a pew of a tiny little chapel during a wedding rehearsal that would include Star Wars theme music because Nerds are awesome. There was in that tiny place so much love and joy. There was also so much sitting still, which I am not so good at. I don’t sit still well. My mind wanders first, before I physically do.
Nerd gaming life trains us to search new places, to look up. To seek out new…I know you can hear it.
So in this tiny place full of joy, I wander a bit, mostly because ADD is real.
I politely wander from the pews to explore and my eyes light up with a simple discovery. That… that rope leads to somewhere. Look up.
Rope, ceiling, church, churches have bells! Ok, calm down this is not the time for your four year old to come out, adult…adult…adult.
It didn’t have a sign on it saying anything, just a jute rope gently leaning on the bannister that led downstairs. I actually looked for a don’t touch sign, I promise. I was more excited than most people would understand. I knew at that moment I had to adult, but I made a plan. The next day, when there was official cause to do so, I would pull that rope and hope and pray that it would ring a bell I couldn’t see. Hope. Pray. Wait.
I waited. I was patient, but I was ready. I was so ready. I felt like a dog with a treat on his nose waiting for the… ok.
The next evening, ceremony complete, I slid away with smiles and nods, off to the rope and knew what I had to do. I pulled with all my heart in hopes to hear a ringing out. I couldn’t quite hear it, but it was there. More than simply hearing it in the distance, I felt the sound travel down the rope and tingle my hands in an electric elative joy. I was ringing the bell.
Lit up, I could feel it through every cell in my steam punk shirt wearing soul that day. Joy! Pulling the strings of joy and celebration, literally. Back to pulling strings again… I could physically feel the joy, I was ecstatic and charged by the current flowing through me. I was fully feeling that moment.
There are few moments in time where I have felt purity spell corrected from piety as I took notes on my phone. Well done. Purity and joy.
There are snapshots in time that I have experienced so wonderful that I have wanted to find others to share them with, right in that exact moment. Ringing that bell, four year old me came out with allllll her wonder and glory and excitement for the magic in the world, the magic in the small things. I love that me. I was having a moment. I was compelled to share pure joy.
Find the children, they will understand. Kids always understand joy.
Teacher me finds the wee ones in their tiny ties and sparkly shoes…Come here! Look Up! Pull on this rope and ring the bell, you can do it too! The wee ones hesitated a bit, not sure if they would get in trouble. But I was smiling, I was so happy I know my excitement was more than just visible. They wanted to smile as big as me. I put the rope in their hands and told them it was ok, in my best mom voice, as I gave them the ability to spread the joy. While grinning ear to ear, I just told them to pull. Pull with all your might and listen, you have to listen closely to hear it from inside.
Just to make sure they believed me I opened the door near by so they could really hear it too, so they could hear the sounds of the bell ringing out. So they could hear that they were spreading joy. They pulled with wee one might and rang the bell and their faces lit up.
Joy is contagious.
I have a new respect for Quasimodo, is that bell what bent his back? Sit down Monkey.
The action, the intention of pulling hard to spread joy means the world can hear you even if you can’t hear yourself. That thought resonated through me…what you’re doing inside can often ring louder and truer with a world you’re not even in. Spread the joy anyway. Ring loud and strong anyway.
I could not have planned for myself to ring out a church bell, it didn’t seem like something that would even have been possible. I don’t really do the church thing. Oddly though, I’ve always had an obsession with cathedrals, stained glass beacons of light and hope disguised in brooding gothic darkness. I find them to be fascinating monuments to a collective combined consciousness creating community.
Monkey brain strikes again. Why do they ring the bells? Tap, tap, tap…you have to know, you have to know…
Something about an angel getting wings? The language of the fairies? I don’t think that’s what they mean…Was it always to share a moment of joy? Perhaps a ringing of the bell to send a reminder every hour, a secret reminder to pause and be happy?
Having not been raised in that world, the world of the man who walked on water, I have to look it up. I have to.
Please let them ring the bells for only good news please let it only be good news…
Forced pause. I hear the coffee beep and go downstairs to pour a first cup of coffee, smile at the sunrise I haven’t seen in a while and wait for the computer to wake up too. Neither of us are normally the morning types but the waking this morning to let words out was too real. Pause and wait. Do I really want to know why they ring the bells?
The computer loads and the sites refresh and I am back to keystrokes with my monkey brain. That sound. That ringing of the bell. The resonation of sound that has me equally obsessed with pipe organs who’s pitches are so high we can’t hear them and so low you can only feel them…unless of course they are placed in conjunction with other notes. Together. The bowl that rings like a bell. What is it about that sound that resonates so deeply within me? Monkey brain taps and pings my thoughts all over about sounds that resonate joy. The bell, the pipes, the bowl that sings. Resonate. Joy.
The proper name of the bowl? I have no idea. The brass bowl that when struck no, that is too violent a word. When tapped with intention they too ring out like bells. What is it about the sound of a church bell, a meditation bowl that causes me to smile and pause…Why do they ring the bells?
Fine, I have to know. I decide simultaneously to look it up and get socks because my still wearing pajamas self is getting cold feet. I will that when I look it up I only want to see that ringing of bells is for joy. Yeah, I know I will find For Whom the Bell Tolls. Metallica or Hemingway, take your pick. Not what I’m looking for this time. Focus.
I google. I take a gander, not a goose chase this time and learn I’m kinda right. It was about time. No, really it was about time. My brief google fu tells me that yes, Churches ring bells for a call to worship. They ring the bells for the people of the town to come together for service and a reminder to recite the Lord’s prayer. I imagine the similarities with a caller from a Minaret now often replaced by a loud speaker that sounds a bit fuzzy because maybe the speaker is blown.
A call to worship.
Maybe I just don’t understand as I wasn’t brought up in that world. Maybe my ignorance is why I think a call to worship, a reminder to pause and to pray is just a simple means to focus intention. A reality check to give collective thanks, a reminder that there are forces at work bigger than ourselves. A reminder that we can do amazing things when we choose to. That call, it is not a call to arms, rather a call to put your arms up. A call to open your heart and receive. A call to joy. That’s a good thing, and good things resonate with me.
Bells bells bells… they toll for thee. That isn’t Hemingway or Metallica, who wrote that famous line? Ok Monkey, I will find the answer. Donne. Not a lyric, or a poem but a devotion. Pause and read it as though I was called to do so. I read in a moment, a piece with intention that reminds us we are all in this together. Yep. That resonates.
I toggle my brain tabs to go back to joy. I choose to recall the energy I felt pulling the strings. Tingly, electric joy. I feel again the sound resonating through my hands out to the rest of the world reminding them to take a moment and smile. Smiles are contagious.
Find a bell and ring it.