When I go to the library I usually go straight to the study area, sit down as quietly as possible and start to read or write.
One day though, something drew me to the section where the music books are.
I get distracted enough as it is so the last thing I thought I needed was to start reading another book. However, the pull was too strong and after resisting for about 3 seconds I gave up and went to see what was there.
As I walked through the door there was a shelf to my right where I saw a book called World Music. I took it off the shelf and when I opened it, I saw a photograph of an instrument I recognised and felt a connection.
It’s called a Sámi drum which is a spiritual, Shamanic drum from Sápmi or Samiland in Scandanaiva, often used in healing ceremonies.
The connection I felt came from my own Sámi drum and I would like to share a little about its design, the meaning of the symbology, and the story behind it.
I came across Katy and Teemu who run Shamanic Drums of Finland and wrote to them to ask about having one made. They asked me to tell them a little about my own life and they would use it to create a story using the Sami symbology.
This is what I wrote.
The set-up that the drum will be a part of is called The Gathering of Drums which represents Connection. Connection between people of all races, religions and cultures, as well as our connection with nature.
Then I shared a little about my own personal story and the relation to transformation and connection. How, after having a brain injury and losing my memory, music, connecting with friends across the world, and spending time in nature played major parts in my recovery.
The personal transformation from one life to another and how I would love that to be a metaphor for us all.
This is the picture of the drum they designed, and the story behind it.
The idea is that you are in the middle of being surrounded by people and nature. The drum has a lot of Sámi symbolism. Upperworld, there is the god of heaven Radien, and the god of thunder, Tiermes. At the bottom are the Ahkka goddesses. There is a holy place for Sheita on middleworld and all thode animals.
The drum, although it has no boundaries, the world is threefold in it. There is the underworld where the disease demon Ruto rides and the devil’s ship, but also the ancestors.
In my reply I told them I had been in hospital the day before, having tests and an MRI scan, so was a bit shaky afterwards.
I found a café, sat down and saw their message.
After reading the description they shared, I gazed at the picture of the beautiful drum and cried a little.
It felt like a moment of healing.
Click here to listen to the recording of the Sami Drum played with the custom made beater.