Musings on Music


A couple of months ago, someone dear to me told me that her parents hated the fact that she was attending concerts, because they believe that music takes people away from God. To me, that was the strangest revelation. Because music is holy scripture. It does not judge. It only loves. And it is a natural intoxicant.

And in terms of distancing one from Source, I find that prayer with music actually brings one closer to the divine. There is nothing as beautiful as Sufis chanting HU while connecting with Source. And how glorious is a capella in a church with stained-glass windows? And when mantras are sung alongside a sitar, one is bound to reach bliss.

Sadly, now that Ramadan is approaching, music concerts, which are already frowned upon by many, will be stopped altogether. And again and again, I ask myself: Who comes up with these rules? Whose beliefs are being imposed on all of us, although we do not all agree upon them? And, why, though the majority of people – liberals and conservatives alike – adore music, are these people getting away with banning music? 

Music is transcendental, sacred. It is a currency that gives to all freely. And interestingly enough, music elevates us to the point where it can bring the world to a state of surrender, peace. Leonard Bernstein knew what he was saying when he eloquently stated: This will be our reply to violence: to make music more intensely, more beautifully, more devotedly than ever before.