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Why Classical can mend wounded souls

Why Classical can mend wounded souls
May 11, 2010, 08:22:51 PM
This could interest you if you've asked yourself why you like classical music so much:

Credo: Trite music blocks our ears to the divine in the liturgy

Plato probably would have added the qualification that no "mysterious" music should be played to kids in order to not confuse them in their education ;-)

Here is an excerpt, if you're curious:

Quote from: John Shepherd (Anglican)
[... ]

By means of evolving harmonies, rhythms, textures, modulations, orchestrations, melodies, counterpoints, imitations, this rich art form has the potential to create an aural environment which enables us to contemplate the mystery of God.

Music of this calibre draws us into an engagement so profound that its sense can never be exhausted. Any work of art, be it sculpture, painting, literature, poetry or music, whose implications are immediately obvious and can instantly be grasped can never enlist our imagination, and so cannot equip us for mystery; and what cannot equip us for mystery cannot equip us for God.

[...]

True art transcends the ordinary. It invites us to contemplate a presence beyond itself. It entangles us in the divine web of ultimate reality, and so creates an aural environment in which we can experience, in the words of Anselm of Bec, the presence of “that than which nothing greater can be thought”.

"God is beautiful, and He loves beauty." (Hadith.)

Re: Why Classical can mend wounded souls
May 12, 2010, 02:11:32 AM
This rings true for me. Once I've understood a good piece of music and its mystery has enlightened me, I don't feel the need to listen to it again for a while.

There are implications to this that I have come to realize recently, yet some may not agree with here: that the value of music depends on the listener. I believe that when you engage with art it changes you, and as you change you will value the mysteries and truths you have yet to unlock, continuously moving you on towards perfect truth and God. Some (eg children, morons) may not be ready to access these higher levels of truth, and need to engage with lower music first.

Re: Why Classical can mend wounded souls
May 13, 2010, 06:30:37 PM
There are implications to this that I have come to realize recently, yet some may not agree with here: that the value of music depends on the listener.

Or maybe, in an attempt to render your statement more precisely, one could say: aside from the objective quality of a given musical creation, the subjective quality as perceived by and effective for the listener may vary according to the subjective state of the listener.

What a revelation, that musical quality could be subjective and objective at the same time!

Re: Why Classical can mend wounded souls
May 13, 2010, 10:30:24 PM
Or maybe, in an attempt to render your statement more precisely, one could say: aside from the objective quality of a given musical creation, the subjective quality as perceived by and effective for the listener may vary according to the subjective state of the listener.

What a revelation, that musical quality could be subjective and objective at the same time!

Human understanding is observed reality tempered by perspective (which, in turn, is tempered by circumstance and will, which, in turn...).

Re: Why Classical can mend wounded souls
May 14, 2010, 01:29:41 AM
There are implications to this that I have come to realize recently, yet some may not agree with here: that the value of music depends on the listener.

Or maybe, in an attempt to render your statement more precisely, one could say: aside from the objective quality of a given musical creation, the subjective quality as perceived by and effective for the listener may vary according to the subjective state of the listener.

What a revelation, that musical quality could be subjective and objective at the same time!

I'm not certain this objective/subjective distinction is useful. Do you think that music that is 'objectively of high quality' is of any use to us, if we have no way to access it other than subjectively? I'm not even sure how we can assess the objective quality of music - almost all facets of it depends on the human circumstance.

Re: Why Classical can mend wounded souls
May 14, 2010, 08:41:21 AM
I'm not certain this objective/subjective distinction is useful. Do you think that music that is 'objectively of high quality' is of any use to us, if we have no way to access it other than subjectively? I'm not even sure how we can assess the objective quality of music - almost all facets of it depends on the human circumstance.

I believe that by adding "of any use to us" to "quality" you already subjectified it. It is clearer, in my opinion, to assume that Beauty is objective and subjectively perceived by us, than to deny its objective reality. If God can see a hierarchy in created things, we can too, because our intelligence partakes in God's intelligence. Object and subject are not completely seperated; it is always possible to perveive objective reality subjectively. Without objective reality, there would be nothing to assess, and without subjective reality, the world would cease to exist.

Your last sentence--if you were red-green-blind, would that make red and green the same colour objectively or subjectively?

Re: Why Classical can mend wounded souls
May 14, 2010, 09:32:41 PM
Beauty is a value, not a thing. It is invented. Nature has no beauty, and no ugliness. Just movement and stillness.

Re: Why Classical can mend wounded souls
May 14, 2010, 11:55:05 PM
I'm not certain this objective/subjective distinction is useful. Do you think that music that is 'objectively of high quality' is of any use to us, if we have no way to access it other than subjectively? I'm not even sure how we can assess the objective quality of music - almost all facets of it depends on the human circumstance.

I believe that by adding "of any use to us" to "quality" you already subjectified it. It is clearer, in my opinion, to assume that Beauty is objective and subjectively perceived by us, than to deny its objective reality. If God can see a hierarchy in created things, we can too, because our intelligence partakes in God's intelligence. Object and subject are not completely seperated; it is always possible to perveive objective reality subjectively. Without objective reality, there would be nothing to assess, and without subjective reality, the world would cease to exist.

Your last sentence--if you were red-green-blind, would that make red and green the same colour objectively or subjectively?

I do not think we are as powerful as you portray us. We cannot comprehend the inaccessible 'more' that lies outside the physical universe, that religion is concerned with and that art tries to access, let alone analyze it. Language and logic are such a poor communicators, but I tend to agree with Istaros - that beauty is a value. This is where religion and nihilism interact. Where religion was used to attribute inherent value to everything, nihilism says there is none. Accepting nihilism, we can still use our faith in the 'more', in Christian terms, to bring the Kingdom of God to us. Good music and art helps, and religion.

Re: Why Classical can mend wounded souls
May 15, 2010, 02:41:13 PM
Beauty is a value, not a thing. It is invented. Nature has no beauty, and no ugliness. Just movement and stillness.

Sorry, but that doesn't convince me at all. Here's why:
Wherever forms are to be found, beauty, as perfection of form, is either existent or lacking; now, Nature is full of forms, so beauty and ugliness are to be found in Nature.

I like the conception of beauty as a radiation of Being, Consciousness, and Bliss (sat, chit, ānanda) in the formal order.

An example would be a swine compared to a swan: the latter radiating more of the ternary and therefore being more beautiful.

Re: Why Classical can mend wounded souls
May 21, 2010, 12:07:56 PM
An example would be a swine compared to a swan: the former radiating more of the bacon and therefore being more beautiful.
"radiating more of the ternary" wwwwwwwww

ha ha I think the original sentence is funnier but the new one is more true.

Thrashymachus

Re: Why Classical can mend wounded souls
May 21, 2010, 01:07:01 PM
What beauty (or ugliness) does a swan radiate towards a rock? None. We are that which perceives beauty, it is our invention.

Re: Why Classical can mend wounded souls
May 21, 2010, 01:22:09 PM
1. A rock is not an intelligent being.
2. Perception does not equal invention.

But keep it coming.

Re: Why Classical can mend wounded souls
May 21, 2010, 05:15:32 PM
Evidently, other animals perceive beauty, given that there are species whose females respond strongly to ostentatious displays of colour/sound/scent by males of the species.

Re: Why Classical can mend wounded souls
May 22, 2010, 07:24:14 AM
Classical mends wounded souls because whether in major or minor key, it shows that life is full of rich waves of emotions that we must let flow.