Water Pianism

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My hope is that many pianists will choose to become, therefore adopt, the ways of Water Pianism which go far beyond any fixed method; rather, you are guided on how to play You, minus the negative impacts of your ego and recognise the true value of your mind in its most natural state: stillness.

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Below is taken from the Preface of Water Pianism, the Guide.

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Traditionally, piano studies focus on fingers-at-the-piano and eyes-at-the-score activities which are both very useful as part of the Piano component but which completely neglect the other two.

This often results in limited progress whereby one feels a sense of frustration, comparisons with others are made when it comes to matters of speed and dexterity and most importantly, a feeling of ne­ver ‘making it’ becomes very predominant, all of which being the result of the poisonous activity of the Ego.

In fact, by focusing on where ‘it’ all enters (the mind) rather than where ‘it’ all exits (the piano), one will come to realise very quickly how much talent is already possessed, thus instantly removing those very unpleasant feelings of self-doubt and disappointment.

The result is a piano life made all the better by having started out with the most productive mind-set possible: detachment from the ego, freedom of the conscious mind and unimpeded flow from the inspirational source.

Before beginning to apply the teachings contained herein and allowing it to guide along the path of Water Pianism, one would do well to prepare mentally and physically for what is to come.

By mental preparation, it is meant that one unlearns what is thought to be known and understood, recognising that any preconceived ideas about playing the piano, especially about what is considered ‘beginner’ level and ‘advanced’ level, are an illusion.

It may be said that in order to enjoy some fresh water, the glass must first be emptied of its former contents.

By physical preparation, it is meant that one gets the body into the habit of sitting in a comfortable posture at all times, both at and away from the piano.

Strengthening of the upper-arms, forearms and regular flexing of the finger tendons is also foundational to the philosophy.

It is invaluable to consider the natural behaviour of water.  It is only in recognising the inherent traits of water and applying them to the Self that one may progress at a most natural speed; a sense of falling behind or not being as quick as another is in this way suppressed and a sense of contentment in the present moment, along with acceptance of current abilities, is experienced at all times.

Pianism embodies the self and is an extension of it; You play what You think about.  As thoughts change, so too does playing; as experiences are gained, so too does playing change.

Consider the following:

How disappointing would it be for the writer to run out of pens, the sculptor to lose the chisel or the artist to damage the last brush?

One may assume then that the primary tool of such creators has been removed; that since they lack what is required for self-expression, that very same passion which is desperately trying to be freed has also been lost.

Yet, even without a complete set of pens, the sharpest chisel or the finest brush, in mind, the true writer always has a story to tell, the true sculptor a scene to carve and the true artist a landscape to paint.

The piano itself is also of little importance, merely the final link of the chain towards which wisdom and inspiration head having entered the mind, unperturbed by the Ego, and are channelled through a well-trained body.

Whether or not they are released for the benefit of others does not alter their initial existence, eternal power or inherent value to the Self.

Thus, it can be said that what ends as music on the piano originates from a place beyond even the conscious mind itself, whether or not it traverses the body and whether or not it is sounded out via the piano.

What sense does it make, then, to focus only on the Piano component if, despite a well-trained body and clear mind, one’s inspiration and wisdom are all to be neglected, despite having an equal need of mastery?


The Water Pianist sees the bigger picture, recognises the importance of each component, spends a lot of time, takes great care and shows much interest in understanding the smaller elements which make up each so as to become as balanced as possible both at and away from the piano.

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