Essay on Music

Music is to the soul what food is to the body, and knowledge is to our minds. That is the way I see it as far as music is concerned because music has been a big part of my life since childhood. I started playing the guitar since I was twelve years old, and today, after so many years, I am still very much into music as when I first started. Now, this article is not about me, as I will surely write something about my personal experiences with music. What I wish to put forth though is this is not another one of my hundreds of essays on various topics. I feel that this is one essay I can write with the conviction of one who has been there.

Music indeed nourishes our souls, and different forms of music appeal to different people and different generations. Of the many types that we all know of, I feel that sentimental numbers are my favorite, and there is nothing more engaging than listening to some romantic loves on a lazy Sunday afternoon. But why is music so different from every other discipline we encounter like science. mathematics, nature studies, psychology and so on. Music is special because more than any other subjects, music interacts with our very inner beings. Listen to a lovely melody and you may hum along or tap your foot. When was the last time you tap your foot or hum when your math or science teacher dishes out abstract formulas for you to crunch? Music has a very special place in the lives of many people that I know of. For those who play some form of musical instruments, their passion is readily revealed when you see them perform on stage or in private. Play a lovely tune, and bask in the sunshine of applause from your many admirers. Now, when was the last time you heard applause for having solved a difficult math or science problem. 

Perhaps it may not be fair at all to make comparisions because music is art in motion, and art appeals to the senses in more ways than traditional disciplines do. It is not uncommon to hear that people associate the kind of music we listen to to the kind of personalities we belong to. Let us be sterotypical without offence. Listen to heavy metal and you are probably a rebel and an anti-establishment yuppie. Listen to reggae and you probably do drugs. No offense to Bob Marley. Listen to classical music and you are likely well adjusted with aristocratic upbringing. Listen to the blues and you probably have some unresolved issues, grievences and what not. Again, I am sterotyping here, so don't hit me on this note.

Most parents are of the thinking that if a child has an upbringing surrounded by music the likes of Bart, Beethoven and all that classics, he or she will never deviate from accepted social norms. At least, you are not nurturing a would be rebel. Having said that, I think that we have been to quick to jump to conclusions about how music influences our personalities. I think when you hear a lovely song or tune, and you experience the kind of emotions associated with the melody or the lyrics, and you feel as though time just stand still, well, that feeling doesn't sustain. You get a temporary emotional high but that's it. No way you are going to be a different person. Music is not mind or personality altering.

Music excites us and replenishes us, and fills us back up to the brim at the end of a long tiring day. Life without a melody will simply wither away like flowers in the drought season.

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Danny Ding

Freelance Writer
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