I’m taking Taiko this semester and I’m super excited. Taiko is Japanese drumming and it is a combination of dance and synchronized drumming. The drums are so loud and powerful but the drummers have to also be really graceful when striking the drums.
For homework, we have to watch videos of other Taiko groups and so I will share with you all the ones I came across tonight. I don’t think they are the best Taiko videos out there but I have only just started looking for them. My arms are going to be so, so buff.
The video was in HD so that’s pleasing to the eye. The group is called Kodo and they are actually from Japan. The drums we play with at school are much smaller and we definitely play with shirts on. Every breathe they take seems like it requires so much effort and that’s so legit-it’s so hard to relax playing fast and strong that sometimes I forget to breathe.
This video is of the San Francisco Dojo, which I believe is one of the first Taiko schools to open in America. (I miss San Fran)
There’s also this group called TaikoProject based in Los Angeles and they seem to be a young and more contemporary group that infuses hip hop, dance and storytelling. They played at some awesome places…
Finally, my professor, Mark Rooney, is the executive director of Odaiko (One) New England Taiko group near Boston. He’s the bald guy on the right.
If I ever have kids, I will put them through Taiko lessons for sure. Come to my performance! It’ll be on December 3rd.
A friend of mine showed me today a video of Danny Deutsch interviewing Ann Coulter on the Big Idea Show. It was extremely horrific watching this and afterwards my friend (not a Christian) said that she was a “demon.” Yeah seriously…she might be. I immediately thought of the many Scriptures that speak of false prophets who deceive and dress in sheep’s clothing but are actually ferocious wolves. She really shouldn’t be allowed to speak or rather shouldn’t be speaking on behalf of all Christians and worst- Jesus.
- Watching this video made me understand on a deeper level of why Christianity is such a thorn in America, American politics and academic circles. Growing up in an ethnic-specific church fortunately spared me (for the most part) from hearing the hateful and offensive comments personalities like Ann Coulter make.
- On that note, I feel that non-whites and international students (mostly at my school) need to understand and acknowledge the fears that many whites have. A lot of friends from school probably came to Wesleyan for the sole purpose of avoiding and rejecting Coulter-like people. So understandable. Christians deny any association with these “crazy conservatives” and say that’s not the real Jesus, it’s not what Christianity is about, I’m not like that but what are we saying? Have we said anything as loud as what Coulter is saying? Her words have been filling up the airwaves and Jesus’ teachings have been drowned out. I am so guilty of not clarifying who Jesus is or what the Christian faith is. I guess sometimes we also need to be silent and just be with those who are bitter and hate “Christians.” Maybe even if I tried to explain, it would make things messier. Restoration work is needed.
- What Scripture says about how false prophets will deceive people (Matthew 24. 11) and even the elect (Matthew 24.24) is frightening because people are listening and following Coulter! All seven of her books have made the N.Y. Times Best Seller List, selling about 3 million copies. Can anyone be so inflexible and unyielding in their beliefs? She believes that conservatism is the best and most perfect view and liberals, liberal thoughts are just completely wrong. She also speaks at a bunch of mega-churches across America. Who is inviting her to speak? Who dares to allow her to speak from the pulpit?
Comments on the video:
- She glorified the diversity in mega-churches and commented that mixed-racial couples in New York City look like they have a “chip on their shoulders.” I think I still agree with Martin Luther King when he remarked on how the most segregated day of the week is Sunday at 11:00AM when church service usually begins. That mixed race couple in NYC may be showing more love than churches have been showing to one another.
- What the heck is “fast track Christianity?” It certainly is not fast track if Paul’s words of running a race with perseverance and pressing on until the end are mentioned in the New Testament. It maybe easy if she is saying that all you have to do is believe in order to get to heaven but believing requires things like dying to the self, loving God with all of our hearts, minds and souls and loving people until it hurts.
- Finally, her anti-Semitic comment about how she wants “Jews to be perfected” has got to be the most blasphemous thing. Does she think she has attained perfection? Is not sanctification a daily and grueling process of working out our relationship with God?
- Deutsch kept pointing out how she was suppose to be “educated” and yet she still was making outrageous comments. She graduated from Cornell University cum laude with a B.A. in history and then got her law degree from University of Michigan. It is possible that academia’s liberal bent might have incubated her super conservative views.
My concluding thoughts are that I’m tired with watching these videos of people who claim to be Christians and are not speaking words of Love. If I do watch them, however, I will respond to them and I pray to God that my responses will represent God in a more truthful light.
Oh goodness…hahha wow…that’s all I gotta say.