The Music Inside by Nido R Qubein

Ken Helser is an excellent musician. He plays piano. Once he used his talents for a different kind of audience. He played for prisoners. He played all over the southeast and yet, it wasn’t the music he played. It was the words he chose.

”When I was a young boy, I was given a little xylophone for Christmas,” he told inmates. “With it came a set of instructions. I was well on the way to learning how to play it when I lost the instruction booklet.” Afterward, he and his parents searched the house, the yard, the family car, and everywhere they could think of and all to no avail. He sat down and began to cry.

“Momma,” he cried, the music is gone.” “No son, it isn’t,” she replied. “The instructions are gone, but the music is inside of you. Listen to it and you will be able to play it.”

After that story, Helser told the prisoners the kicker: “Here in prison, you may feel cut off from everything, like life is closing in on you, and like the music is gone from your life. But the music’s inside of you; if you listen to it, you can play it.”

Remember, you are a bundle of potential. All you need to do is convince yourself of this potential. You can do it. Tell this to yourself over and over and over again until it takes root and springs forth alive in your heart.

Life is what we make of it. It is important to remember you are the architect of your own life. You have the ability to design it the way you would like it to be… Unfortunately, too many let life direct them especially when they feel they have blown it and see no hope. When they are in a situation that appears or seems hopeless, like those in prison.

The fact is, many are in a prison of their own making. They have allowed the surrounding circumstances to bind them up and place them in a position where they feel there is no hope when in all reality, if there is breath in your body, there is hope. If there is a sun rise in your life, there is hope. If there is another day to face, there is hope. The hope is in you. The hope is the music that lies un-played in your heart.

Regardless of your situation, do not allow circumstances to dictate how your life will turn out. Make a decision to design a life and become all that is possible for you. This is what Nelson Mandela did when he 27 years in prison after having been sentenced to life. He was actually in 3 different prisons. Although his life was controversial and those on the right and left both had issues with what he stood for or did, he was able to “play his own music” for the 27 years that he served and he believes and so do others that his music is what caused his sentence to be commuted, allowing him to go on to achieve great things for millions around the globe and in his own country.

This is what Patrick Soon-Shong and Elon Musk, both of South Africa, did as well when they decided to become something outside of what their circumstances said they could or should be able to do. Patrick went on to become a surgeon and the inventor of a drug by the name of Abraxane. He founded Abraxis BioScience and later sold the company for billions. Elon Musk you all know as the wonder boy of Tesla. He also defied the odds and became what he did by listening to the music inside and allowing it to play rather than be muffled out by what was going on around him.

Nido R Qubein, who wrote the above article, “The Music Inside”, is an immigrant, like Soon-Shong and Musk into the USA. He came here so he also could play his music and find his fortune. Immigrating from the middle east with very little English and $50 in his pocket, he is now the President of High Point University and has written many books and is very successful.

Take an urging from Ken Helser, “Learn to listen to the music inside you and be courageous enough to play it.” Each of us have a song to play and it is important we play it as it has the potential to be a blessing to those around us and only we have that particular song…play it.

Best of LUCK as you
Labor Under Correct Knowledge…


Rick Cox