Ka-klunk. Just like a class AB amp leaving class A, that was the sound of 2021 segueing into 2022.

Did you hear that? Not.

In fact, it happened at different times. If it's the dominant solar not rarer lunar count, it still depended on where on the planet's time-zone partitions we live. On the hour every hour, there were 24 different entries into the New Year. Ka-klunk, ka-klunk, ka-klunk. Or rather, imperceptible progressions apart from noisy jollification wherever fireworks exploded and people still gathered en masse.

Given the alarming state of affairs—C-19 and its variants, global intensification of weather extremes, economic repercussions, migrant displacement, skewed distribution of wealth and more—it's probably fair to say that many of us this year past have gotten more in touch with our own inevitable mortality. We probably also felt a general sense of heightened fragility in the face of accelerated changes.

Then it's all too easy to lose our healthy center. Yet being off center or eccentric skews our perception. And perception is reality. If our mood be dim and fearful, so is our outlook on life. If our disposition be sunny and expansive, so will be our life experience. It's bright and full of possibilities. They say that we can't change what happens but are always free to choose how we respond. If we remain sunny, expansive and centered no matter what, surely this can't fail but to flow/glow into what happens. Since everything connects to everything else and as above is as below, we constantly make a difference. We have an effect. Everybody does. That's so even when we're in no position to appreciate fully how and where. Seeing this just involves trust and basic understanding. A butterfly flaps its wings here, somebody falls in love over there.

Should part of our routine involve listening to music; should listening to music lead us to our quiet space of equanimity, peacefulness and joy… then doing that is how we make a difference not just to and for ourselves. Then—spin doctor alert!—it's actually our sacred duty that we do a blissful lot of listening. It's how we function as little beacons of light. In a world whose daily news press loves to focus on catastrophes and terrible news, turning ourselves on like virtual Xmas lights, well past the season and all year long, surely can't be a bad idea. That shift comes from enjoying ourselves to the fullest, at least for stretches every day. On the moons it's called listening to music.

In that spirit, Happy New Year. Cheers to making it so no matter what else.