My memories of November are etched in my mind from childhood in Ohio. They include tangible items with my associated feelings about them. Trees (bare), leaves (fallen), weather (bleak), sky (dark), mood (somber), and colors (gray). Quite an indictment of the month of November. In my mind these represent a stark grounding and reality that sets up the light-hearted and fanciful holidays through December, and looks toward the coming New Year and a hard winter. Anticipation. This is my concept, however narrow, of the month of November.
We are faced with many concepts in our daily lives. Some we can comprehend and deal with , and some we deal with with absolutely no comprehension. For example: a trillion, a terabyte, a light year, the universe, and, the Creator of our universe. We use these terms daily, but the actual concepts are too immense to really understand, or even to comprehend.
We handle electricity everyday, but do we understand it? We listen to organized sound (music) everyday, but don’t really understand the infinite variety of vibrations per second (pitch or frequency), width and depth of dynamic range (loud & soft), or the cosmic connection of rhythm (regularity of pulse). We think we have control because we manage these things daily. But if the regularity of anything in the micro or macro range changes, we are only caught up in its vortex, but definitely are not in control. We can only hope to manage, not control. Weather encircles the earth. It consists of wind, rain, snow, fog and variations in humidity, and we depend and deal with its effects. But we don’t control it or even manage it. The earth’s crust which we exist upon daily is subject to the shifting of its tectonic plates over vast periods of geological time. We neither control nor manage any part of this process. We barely understand the laws of nature, physics, chemistry, and science in general. We use the principles, but we manage them, not control them. We manage some of what we comprehend, and when more is revealed to us, we manage that, but again, without control.
It seems like we know just enough that we can either damage ourselves or keep moving toward some measure of control. Historically, the problem with moving ahead has always been ultimate control by weak minds that can’t comprehend the micro and the macro as we know it, but just want control for its own sake. It is in this situation that everyone suffers. We need a new “Age of Enlightenment,” an attempt to comprehend the incomprehensible. Now we only exist by the illusion of control. We need to increase our in-depth and far-reaching knowledge to gain some measure of actual control.
Music and the arts illustrate this attempt to make tangible the “intangible,” by controlling only what we can comprehend. The fine arts are the arts of “fine tuning.” The ultimate existence of humanity will depend on our ability to gain control of that which we don’t now understand. So when you listen to music of all types, think of the micro and the macro and stretch a little farther each time into the depth of vibrations, volume and pulse. The human race may depend on this for its very survival!