The Story of Music


Many myths and legends are associated with the birth of music. Different civilizations explain the origin of this art in different ways. According to the Egyptian civilization,Osiris and his wife Isis are regarded as the authors of music. As per the Hindu mythology, the great god Brahma is regarded as the creator of music and his consort Saraswati is regarded as its guardian. Om,the sound of existence is believed to be the purest of all sounds which are created and which will be ever created on Earth. Thus the origin of music is as divine as that of man.

Let us see the importance of music in today's perspective. Every morning we wake up in a world whose reality is pain, injustice, cruelty and brutal acts of terrorism. We think of changing the world. Some suggest that the solution lies in building a new ethics while others say that economic growth is the solution to all world problems. The world will change when the minds of people change. And how do we change the minds of people? Is it through lectures, seminars or conferences? I think music has more power than words to bring about great changes in the world.

In what state of mind does a man commit crime? A man may harm another when his mind is under the influence of negative energy i.e. his mind is surrounded by evil thoughts of greed, lust or jealousy. Music has the power to heal the mind. It can change the negative energy of the mind into positive. People can be persuaded to change habits and do good deeds through music. Many spiritual leaders in India use the power of music to influence the minds of their disciples. Music has the power to change the pattern of thoughts in a person's mind. Just as listening to lustful songs leads one towards lust, similarly listening to devotional songs will lead one on the path of devotion and self realization.

Often, we use music to relieve tension and stress. In sad moments of our lives, music is our sole companion. It certainly helps to listen to sad songs or play our favorite instrument to vent to our feelings during sad times. While at other times, music helps us to celebrate the joyous moments in our lives. Music easily creates specific moods for celebrations. No Christmas is celebrated without singing carols. No celebration is complete without musical entertainment.

People all over the world are researching on the possibilities of creating healing environments with the help of music. Today, even physicians are beginning to realize that pills and surgery are not necessarily the best options to treat all that ails us. From the drums used in folk music to the modern day electric guitar, humans are experimenting with various frequencies to cure illness and soothe the mind. Tuning forks, gongs, singing bowls as well as human voices are employed to restore and maintain physical and emotional well-being and unlock the creative spirit in the listener.

Music has a role to play in the field of education too. Children tend to retain more when taught through music. It is innovatively used in schools to teach subjects in an interesting way. Music can be co-related to Geography, History, Poetry and even Mathematics! Isn't it a good idea to make the children listen to the Egyptian music while talking about Egyptian culture? Innovative use of melody and music in the classrooms enhances the teaching capacity of the teacher as well as the learning capacity of the learner. Hence, children should be involved in all kinds of musical and movement activities while in classroom to make the teaching-learning an effortless process.

Music makes us more hopeful even when nothing seems to go right. Positive thoughts come more easily in a musical environment rather than in silence. The great spiritual guru Rushivar says – “You are the result of your choices”. It is certainly your choice whether to listen to lustful songs or devotional, whether to listen to good music when you are feeling low or just sit brooding over your fate silently.