April 19, 2015

Music: Why do we Listen?

Buddhist monk, bell, chanting
Have you ever listened to Buddhist monks meditating to deep vibrating tones of either their throats or musical instruments?

If yes, you may agree with my personal finding—and now a belief—that music, although man-made and a product of social discourse is intrinsic to our inner being. Often times the deepness of meditative state is enhanced by the syncing of vibrations that are most likely to put our mind and body at the state of letting go. Many use music as an external vehicle to bring their mind to the state of trance. Hearing music intrinsically is different from actively listening to it.

Music is a product of the aural.

Aural is one of our strongest senses, think about it: when you are behind the wheel what are you most likely to react to, a visual change or someone loudly honking a horn? Now, we are not all wired the same, some may pay more attention to the visual versus aural, that’s not to say that they are somehow different, their visual cortex simply takes more charge than aural. However, it is a known fact that if you close your eyes and eliminate one of the senses, your hearing and tactile feeling enhance. I don’t know about you, but when I am deeply enjoying a specific song I usually close my eyes, that’s my body’s way of communicating to me that I’m very comfortable.

Is Music capable of changing our mindsets?

This question is of a subjective nature, and in my case, the answer is a definite: “Yes!” When used properly, music has a healing aspect to it. This is where music therapy comes in: it is utilized as a tool of slowly but surely healing one’s mind, and steering thoughts from one angle to another. This type of sensory exposure can even be used to improve motor skills. If this doesn’t show the power of music, I am not quite sure what else can be more convincing.

What’s in it for you?

Well, the beautiful thing about music is that it is relative to our own self. Just like meditation, it is infinitely personal but at the same time enhanced when shared. You see the world differently when listening to your favorite song whether you realize it at the moment or not. You can use the connection between music and your sense of self to foster a deeper connection between senses and  mind. After all, everything in our body resonates at a vibration, why not sync it to the tune we love?

So next time you listen to that most favorite song, think about the state of mind that it brings upon.



Relephant Reads:

The 10 most Emotional pieces of Music—without Lyrics.

Author: Luba Gavadzyn

Editor: Renee Jahnke

Image: Quinn Dombrowski-Flickr

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