Let me start by saying that in writing this post I am in no way trying to be sacrilegious or disrespectful to anyone’s religious preference I am just sorting through my own feelings and wanted to share them.
It has almost been a month since Prince’s passing and like many of my peers and his fans, I am still in a state of disbelief bordering on denial. Sadly, no matter how much I try to deny it, his death has been confirmed everyday since it was reported and there is nothing we can do about it.
I have never experienced this sort of mourning and I have to admit I was a little confused by it maybe even a little uncomfortable with it. I have mourned the passing of celebrities before (some I even knew personally) but it was nothing like this. Then I realized I had never had this sort of affinity for anyone as I had for Prince. I mean, I knew as much about him as any of his fans possibly even less and yet as little as I knew about the man, I knew his music (which was in essence his heart) and that was all I needed to know. So when he died I felt a little lost, as I’ve said in previous posts, he was one of the few consistent beings in my life.
As I struggle with my thoughts and these words, I appreciate your patience in reading this post. I hope I don’t start to ramble. Let me continue
As I watched his fans unite over social media and pilgrimage to Paisley Park just to honor his memories, I started to think “his death is like a religious experience.” I am not trying to compare him to Jesus but only that his presence in the lives of so many people seemed life changing in the wake of his death. For me personally, music just doesn’t seem the same to me anymore, to be honest nothing seems quite the same to me anymore.
As I scrolled through my social media feeds I saw the comfort and I ALSO saw the conflict. In this POST-Prince world I find myself responding differently to the conflict and accordingly to the comfort by asking myself “What Would Prince Do?” He wouldn’t judge, he probably wouldn’t even respond and if he did it would be with such humor and candor it would be hard to get offended. Yes, indeed that’s what he would do.
Prince was as enigmatic as he was explicit. He was uncompromising as much as he was cooperative. He was charitable, he was humble, he was a Prince among Kings. I find it more than a coincidence that his name was Prince. I think it was divinely planned that way. I think it’s more than a trend that he has impacted that lives of so many in this experience that he called life. I don’t find it strange that in the wake of his death it was so easy to forget all the ill goings on in the world and focus on supporting and comforting the many soldiers in his Purple Army. We embraced his disciples as if they were our own family not wanting anything more than to provide the support they need to keep his life as impactful today as it was when he was alive. When I say disciples I mean the people he mentored and helped to define so that in his absence they would continue to share (spread) his love. I can’t begin to share the number of posts I’ve seen in all of their hopes, Paisley worshippers cried for his resurrection, prayed for a misunderstanding or pleaded for his return. It was as heartbreaking as it was touching.
As I struggle with my own acceptance of his death, I reflect upon the many life lessons I’ve learned by virtue of one of his many compositions. My reflection of him illuminated my energy and allowed my to attract those with the same purple light. He taught me about spirituality in the course of his own religious growth. He never asked that we follow him but he simply lead by example and for that we became a group of loyal believers.
People of all ages, backgrounds, religions, sexual preferences, social backgrounds and genders gathered at his musical revivals across the globe. As we watched him display every human emotion and urge known to man we still found him unworldly in his essence resulting in devout members to his alliance.
I know it may seem that I am about to cross a line but I promise that is not my intent but it wouldn’t surprise me that in some coming generation that they will be reading from the book of “Musicology”, pilgrimages to Paisley Park and purifying themselves in the waters of Lake Minnetonka while wearing purple gel bracelets with the symbolic acronym of WWPD (What Would Prince Do?) I mean how many men do you know that walked this earth and are recognized by a symbol. (hmmm, I see your wheels turning). Again let me clarify that I am not trying to compare Prince to any religious figure past or present but I am saying that his angelic presence and his impact on this culture are very similar by certain aspects. There is no denying that he truly was a son of God.
I have probably asked myself WWPD subconconsiously for years just based on my musical taste, fashion sense and humanitarian efforts but now I will probably make a more conscious effort into adopting characteristics that made him the celestial being he was to so many people.
Peace and be Funky…