As a music manager and head of a label, my job has always been to serve the creative flow of the soul of the artist. Travelling to different parts of the world helped me to witness that audiences are alike, no matter where I go. Language ceased to be a boundary. Smiles, music and interconnection became the unifying force, showing me that we are all the same.
Yet it was not until I met Parvati that I began to realize who and what I am really serving. In 2010, based on a song Parvati had on Asia Pop 40, a tour was imminent. Everything was in motion for it when Parvati came to me and said a whale was calling her to the North Pole in a recurring dream. She asked if she could postpone the Asian tour to instead go and sing to raise awareness of the melting Arctic sea ice.
At first, I panicked. I thought, “My goodness, this is such an oblique. Surely, we can do the tour first.” Yet I could see it was her soul speaking. So I said, “Let’s put it out to the universe and see.” Within three weeks the universe’s plan had revealed itself. The resources needed had all come together. Parvati and I, and a friend, were on our way to the North Pole.
As we started the journey, little did I know that our lives were about to radically change. When we arrived in one of the most northern inhabited places in the world, Parvati was greeted by two Inuit elder women who said, “We knew you were coming to do healing for the planet. The whale told us.” In that moment, I cried at the incredible interconnection. I had always believed that we were interconnected, but not to the extent that women in such a far-removed place, with a different language and tradition, would be in communication with the same whale that Parvati was hearing from thousands of miles away. Something so much bigger than my own self was at play here.
Parvati turned to me and told me that this was the power of Nature. Its intelligence was omniscient and it would work through us if we were willing to listen.
Of course, as a singer, music composer and producer, Parvati is constantly listening. In our tour van, I used to like listening to music. Yet Parvati would find a symphony in what to me was silence. She would say, “Listen to the sound of the wheels turning on the ground, listen to the wind resist the van, listen to the movement of all the elements. It literally is a chorus of interconnected sound.”
Discovering the Soul of Service
I had begun to feel thankful for almost everything. Whether I was giving to others or receiving, gratitude and interconnection had become my baseline. It was in that moment that I learned whom I really serve. After all, who or what is it that gives and provides for all life? Of course it is our planet. I came to realize that our dependence on this beautiful blue globe, so small and so unique in the cosmos, is total.
During the North Pole journey, it had been clear to see that the ice was melting and that in its melt, animals were dying and people were suffering. It was already beginning to impact all life beyond the Arctic. I saw Parvati speak passionately at city councils, sing at school assemblies, and meet with elders, scientists, hunters. I knew that all the skills I had ever learned had come about so that I could pay it forward to serve all life everywhere and be Nature’s son. In loving and embracing all, I would help to support right action to protect each and every one of my universal family.
Parvati responded to the voice of Nature not long after that by setting in motion the Parvati Foundation, and the Marine Arctic Peace Sanctuary—the largest protected area in history. Together, with the help from some friends, we sat down and began to develop the global education strategy (GEM) that would give voice to our interconnection as never before and create the needed momentum for MAPS.
With GEM in hand, I have been to London, Los Angeles, New York, Silicon Valley, Singapore and Toronto to meet with media industry executives and offer them the opportunity to be on the right side of history. Leaders in impact investment got word of the paradigm shift that is MAPS, and I started being invited to give keynote presentations to impact investors and CEOs at events in the UK and Switzerland such as the Swiss Impact Investment Association, and attend the World Economic Forum.
My network has grown to include executives, family offices, philanthropists, heads of state and royalty. I travel extensively with road trips away from home for longer than I ever imagined. I am surrendered to the creative flow to guide me wherever I am required and speak from my heart to give Nature a voice. Each day is packed so full that it starts to feel like a living dream sometimes. Exhausted and exhilarated, I have found myself very quickly and naturally loving and serving all, regardless of race, creed or income. The world and everyone on it have truly become my family, for whom I feel such love that I cannot do anything but assist.
Rishi Deva is the CEO of Kupid’s Play Records. With two decades of experience in the music industry, Rishi has been nominated for numerous marketing awards and earned a Gold Record in the music industry for management. He serves as a Marketing Consultant to the Parvati Foundation.