Nurturing personal growth

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In some exercises I learnt as a student, my peers and I were encouraged to play rhythm patterns with both hands, using sticks or beaters. Once we had mastered playing a polyrhythmic phrase in one permutation, we were asked to try playing the same pattern with each hand playing the part that the opposite hand had played before. These were supposed to be helpful in developing both sides of our brains, thus achieving a form of balance in our personal growth. It was one of the exercises that I found most stimulating, back in the day.

Is there any truth in the romanticised notions that many people have about the preferences that some have for activities related to one side of our brains or the other? Maybe so, but we can always work on improving ourselves.

If the use of language, logic and reasoning are left brain functions, while creativity, imagination, intuition and insight are controlled by the right side, how does this account for the output of poets, philosophers, playwrights and by extension songwriters, composers and others with those talents and skills?

The company one keeps can make a significant impact on one’s capacity for learning and achieving. Perhaps one can’t be too careful about choosing who to hang out with. Does this mean we’re being snobby when we make those choices?

We can be respectful and pleasant to each other, without having to make unnecessary compromises about our personal boundaries. Don’t we owe our personal growth to ourselves?

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