Tuesday, January 21, 2014

Classical music as a journey of joy and self-discovery

The West has discovered how to tap so many powerful sources of energy in nature but still remains largely unaware of the tremendous force, even more powerful than nuclear energy, contained within each of us. As long as this powerful internal energy lies undiscovered, our life is doomed to the mental and emotional pressures so characteristic of our age. Classical music, which is designed to take advantage of this hidden inner reserve and utilize it to the maximum extent, offers us the best opportunity to overcome these pressures and transform our lives into the meaningful, integrated whole that we desire.
That passage comes from the Preface to Introduction to Tantra by Lama Yeshe, but I took the liberty of changing the words 'The practice of tantra' in the final sentence to 'Classical music'; my sleight of hand is not entirely inappropriate as the foreword to the 2001 edition of Introduction to Tantra is by Philip Glass. The practice of Tantra is one of the most misunderstood of Eastern traditions and Lama Yeshe describes it as a journey of joy and self-discovery. As was the music making of the sadly departed Claudio Abbado.

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