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I must have time for magic


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#1 darci

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Posted 16 September 2018 - 12:16 PM

Yes, I said magic, but for the rest of this text I will use the word "music" instead.  
 
For me, listening to music isn't really about what I hear.  It's about what it brings to my imagination.  It's an experience of vision and emotion, mentally and spiritually.
 
I'm going to let you all in on a little secret of mine.  This song is my absolute favorite song I've ever heard in my entire life.
 
 
It is also on the absolute favorite album I've ever heard in my entire life.  The next closest pieces of music I could even compare them to would be Mozart's Queen of the Night's Aria from The Magic Flute
 
 
... an operatic piece which has impact on me not only for the reason that it is musically beautiful but because it speaks lyrically in parallels to my own experience in complicated relationships, reaching for the unreachable, and enlightenment.
 
Then there's Beethoven:
 
 
 
Two fantastic scenes from Immortal Beloved.
 
Back to the reason I am posting this:  The world.  
 
The world... 
 
The world feels highly toxic to me.  Almost all the time.  The advertisements.  The insinuation of other people's agendas upon your psyche.  The rude juxtaposition of the self within a monster that only seeks to use and consume you.  The mad scrambling of all the other persons to be the last one eaten alive.
 
This isn't life.  And no matter how lucky you are, I tell you, there is still more to life than this.  And I know this, and feel it in my bones, and its spirit speaks to me constantly in every pained breath I take.
 
This is why I listen to Arcana, my favorite extant musical group in the world.
 
When "Closure" begins, it dissolves me.  It is the revelation of the truth of the light of god.  It is the last exhale as your spirit is welcomed into the warm light of heaven.  It is the chorus of angels, the relief of the shedding of the body and all its pains and concerns.  It is the dissolution of the doubts and false truths of the material to reveal the ineffable essence that is our soul, resounding in divine and unencumbered composition.
 
Of course, you can't just look upon something so beautiful directly, and like Moses on the mount, you must prepare yourself for its arrival.  So, in an inspired choice, the band precedes the final song with one titled "Season of Thought," another gem from this almost-perfect album.
 
 
Hearing this song is a transition you must take before you're ready to peer into the heart and eyes of the infinite almighty.
 
Musically, it is the sanctified and holy secret space you trespass on near midnight on Christmas Eve.  The snow has fallen and the sky has cleared.  You wander forest hillsides to witness the milky way spilling overhead in a multitude of stars while the northern lights sing a silent ghostly reverie.  Only you and God know you're here, and you can feel his eyes upon you.
 
Though it is cold, you never feel so warm as you do in this moment, resting in infinite stillness among forever, patiently reminded that there is much, much more in God's creation than we could ever know.
 
This is what good music is for me.  I know that at least some of you out there feel the same.
 
I have seen something greater and it is not for sale.  But, like coming back down from mushrooms, when the glow fades and your mind is reassembled into the material world, the noise of the traffic resumes, the clock ticks, and the economic forecasters attempt to cast their foul witchery on the world when they try to sell me something again, I only listen as the deaf would to the promises they could never keep.

Edited by darci, 16 September 2018 - 12:34 PM.

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#2 clumsy

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Posted 06 February 2019 - 01:24 PM

Beethoven's opus 130, 131, and 132: I get the chills just contemplating posting about this transcendental music. I use that word because these quartets are beyond beauty.
When the solo violin sounds in opus 131, "crystalline" comes to mind, as Venus might appear on a clear night. Eight minutes into the 4th movement, I see a cascade of colored crystals: not due to the momentary sound, but due to the conditioning imparted by attentively listening all that precedes.
4-1/2 minutes into the second movement of opus 132, I see luminous angels dancing on the head of a pin. In the third movement, I stare into the face of God. And I am atheist!
40+ years ago, I listened to a program on FM radio entitled "Beethoven: His Spiritual Development" featuring excerpts from a book of the same title by J.W.N. Sullivan and, of course, the music. I remember it so clearly because it expanded my reality. I have that book now. And I have the Tokyo String Quartet's rendition.
When I posted this to the Classical Music Community on G+, +Mari Christian commented:
The last Beethoven Quartets are sublime. I also adore the "Grosse Fuge", which originally was written as the last movement of Op. 130. But, it was so challenging to the audience of 1826 that Beethoven was persuaded to write a more conventional final movement, and leave the Grosse Fuge as a freestanding monument to his genius.The intensely complex piece could easily have been written in 1926. it sounds so modern.


Edited by clumsy, 06 February 2019 - 02:02 PM.

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#3 darci

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Posted 07 February 2019 - 12:49 AM

clumsy, i'm so glad you mentioned those works because among them are some recordings on records my dad used to have.  i'm sure i just haven't met enough people, but among the people i have met... my father happens to be one of the most interesting people i have ever known.  one of the reasons i say so is for his love of this music.

 

his record collection included a lot of the usual favorites of any man of his generation.  but unusually, he also had a lot of records of classical music, and though he probably shared a few albums here and there with me that i remember, the ones which made the most profound mark on me were composed by beethoven, bach, and mozart.  i'll never ever forget the first time he invited me into his listening room and demonstrated how to operate the turntable.  it was like being shown how to cast a magic spell.  your movements were the incantations.  and what you conjured was merely the image of a thing, not the thing itself.  i wanted to understand music directly.  i wanted to know it intimately.  i wanted to listen no less than i wanted to compose, if only someone could teach me.

 

just listen to me!  as i type this out, i am realizing i sound just like him, in the way he described things and explained what moved him.  i miss my dad so much.  god, if i had ten more lifetimes i don't think i could have known him completely.  he was distant but when he was close it was almost enough.

 

it's a universe.  a universe all my own.  no one else will ever understand this as i do.  and when i die, it will be lost forever, and completely.  those moments.  those precious memories.  this is what i face when i take mushrooms.  there is no comfortable answer i have found yet, excluding those i can't comprehend and am not ready for.   all i know is that living hurts and though there is beauty it is fleeting, and change is forever.  what shall we ever do that has any true meaning?


Edited by darci, 07 February 2019 - 12:51 AM.


#4 clumsy

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Posted 08 February 2019 - 03:30 PM

Those who are religious are almost fortunate in having their life purpose handed to them. We must create that for ourselves - both a curse and a blessing. You might find this interesting: https://futurism.com...tvr-and-samsung


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