Taylor Swift concert- Swifties

Celebrating Swifties

by Dr. David Sanders

I was barely six years old when they arrived. It was called an invasion. I am referring to The Beatles hopping over the pond and landing in New York City in February, 1964. Along with some 70 million Americans my family watched them perform on the Ed Sullivan show. That was the sixties and young people, especially girls, including my older sister, were obsessed. Those young fans wished the lyrics, “I want to hold your hand” was a personal invitation for them. From that auspicious start who could have predicted what the Beatles were to become, the voice of a generation; a socio-cultural, political and spiritual influencer.

Fast forward almost sixty years and the adolescent girl demographic (and many others) aren’t Beatle fans or Beatnicks they are Swifties. Until this past week, despite living with two Swifites, I had not paid attention to the Taylor Swift phenomenon. She arrived in Denver this past week on her “Eras” tour and it felt to me like a home invasion. Blaring for a full week throughout our house were songs from every era of Swiftdom.

While working on another writing project I serendipitously came across an insight from the unpronounceable named author of the book (and concept) Flow, Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi. It was so timely as it helped me to understand  the power song has for those finding their way both in the world and in their inner selves.

“For adolescents their music acts as a modulator of moods. Whenever emotions threaten to engulf a teenager’s consciousness, turning on music can help focus and objectify them; the music and the lyrics reflects the formless yearnings of the listener and give them substance and legitimacy” (from Why We Need Things).

What seems to resonate most profoundly for this generation of teens (and pre-teens) is that Swift, following in the footsteps of other autobiographical singer-songwriters, connects with the emotional turbulence and struggles they experience through her “confessional” songs.

Over the years I have been blessed with so many wonderful teachers, mentors, colleagues and students. The ones I have learned from the most, and they are far and few between, are those that are willing to reveal themselves.  Autobiography, when it serves others, is a powerful means of connection.  As I value that in others, I value that in myself and the teachers at Kabbalah Experience. I guess I am, we are, Swifties after all.

Learn more about Taylor Swift


1 Comment

diane · July 21, 2023 at 7:10 pm

Dear David,

Thank you for sharing your blog about Swifties! Talk about timely. When I read what you wrote about ” those that are willing to reveal themselves.” I knew I could no longer keep quiet.
I haven’t been able to stop the loop going on in my head. Over and over the voice is saying, you must explain more authentically about what led you to try these intro to kabbalah classes and ultimately sign up for the Tree of Life class.
I am not only here because ‘I love learning’, which is what I said at the time. To introduce or reveal myself is to explain that I am here to study the Tree of Life because I recognize something Divine at work. Just a few days before seeing these class offerings I had walked into a little magical shop in town looking for a greeting card that would have the tree of life on it. My goal was to send a thank you note with this tree of life card to a sweet friend back east. However, the store had no such card. But what I did find was a tree of life bookmark made with pargasite, among other stones. When Emilia, the store owner, explained the healing elements of the stones to me, I said, maybe I should keep this for myself, and I did! (photo attached)
In addition to this, I’d like to share another significant event that took place more than 20 yrs ago. It was September 2000, I had just bought a house and during the Move-in process when I reached up to clean the top shelf of the master bedroom closet I found a greeting card that seemed to have been left accidentally by whoever was living in the house before I bought it.
Unfortunately, I no longer have the card and don’t remember the exact words but it said something like
‘Dear Mark, I hope you enjoy this gift of reading the kabbalah’, signed by aunt so- and- so. I was intrigued by finding this card mentioning the Kabbalah as I had heard of its mystical teachings somewhere before. So I went to the local library and got some books on Kabbalah. Distinctly, I remember one was the Sefir Yetzirah. I guess the oddest thing to share at this point is that I don’t remember learning anything more. Just that these were mystical teachings from or for jewish people.
Perhaps it has some significance to point out that I was studying A Course In Miracles at the time and was profoundly and deeply into the teachings of that book. Having shared all this with you now, I can only imagine that this is the time learning about the tree of life can be most beneficial, not only for me, but for all life. Hopefully we’ll have a chance to share more about the terrapin, and the slowness of things….

With infinite gratitude,


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