Saturday, February 27, 2010

The Therapy Of Music

Out of what is in itself an undistinguishable, swarming continuum, devoid of distinction or emphasis, our sense make for us, by attending to this motion and ignoring that, a world full of contrast, of shady accents, of abrupt changes, of picturesque light and shade.

Helmholtz says that we notice only those sensations which are signs to us of things. But what are things? Nothing, as we shall abundantly see, but special groups of sensible qualities, which happen practically or aesthetically to interest us, to which we therefore give substantive names, and which we exalt to this exclusive status of independence and dignity.

William James said that the ego creates things by selectively attending to one aspect of a field of awareness, and ignoring everything else within that field. He's right. We do create things by slicing up reality into experiences. We do tend to close the eyes of our conscious mind, and not see what is there to see. We don't trust our innate therapeutic nature. Music, on the other hand, is one of those sensations that we rarely overlook. Music is a conscious reminder of the innate rhythms that exist within us. Music brings images to our conscious eyes, and we see our conscious beliefs in various forms.

The natural healing sound of music surrounds us, but we give it other names and ignore it. The sound of rain is one of those nuances. Left alone the conscious mind will automatically allow the sound of rain to flow through our thoughts, and healing occurs internally. We don't believe it, because as James points out we consider the rain an annoyance rather than a healer. The great therapy within the sound of all types of music activates our cells, and stimulates the energy within the inner self. Music helps the conscious mind unite with other portions of the self that wait for us to become aware of them.


Sistah Kenya da Black Butterfly said...

So True.. Music is my therapy and it helps me to write and get in my zone on so many levels. I am thankful for this piece and it's insight.

Hal said...

Your are a special Butterfly, Sistah Kenya. Thank you for adding your thoughts to this essay.