Stillness of Unceasing Activity

Greg Van Der Struik

Trombone solo in Just intonation. 7th harmonics and 7th harmonics of 7th harmonics in fanfare and verse.

The title refers to the analogy of a spinning top. When looking at the top one feels centred, serene, even still, whilst sensing the level of energy and activity required to keep the top spinning. Dr. Isabella Mears makes this analogy after her translation of chapter XLIII of The Tao Te King. The text compares the enrichment gained by looking outward with the stillness possible when connected with the Inner Self. Outward experience will never fully satisfy whilst the “activity of Inner Life becomes the stillness of Inner Life.” The opening musical gesture and the following metric modulations point to this activity. The ‘verses’ relate to the enrichment of “activity in learning.” Verse Three moves gradually towards the activity of Inner Life.

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