Music is our Universal Language / by kevin murray

Henry Wadsworth Longfellow said that: "music is the universal language of mankind."   When the movie "Close Encounters of the Third Kind" came out in 1977, the five-tone motif created was used in order to communicate and to demonstrate that the culture and life on planet earth was universal in nature and that it was a given that an alien culture in its mother-ship would be cognizant that the tonality of these notes were indicative of a civilization that was advanced and not primitive.  Previously, to this movie, who can forget the menacing warning of the two note musical pattern, from the blockbuster movie, "Jaws," indicative of an impending attack and stalking of the great white shark, which is absolutely unforgettable.


One must remember that there are myriad ways for mankind to communicate with one another, and that even the human language when spoken contains its own melodies or cacophony.  What is clear though in any conversation is that the tonality of the words being spoken and how they interplay with each other is extremely meaningful to the audience receiving these words, over and above the actual words themselves.  Music can express all of the basic human emotions such as love, amity, happiness, conflict, strife, disgust, and fear.  Hearing these emotions in music allows us to comprehend what the artist is trying to convey and to appreciate their effects upon us.


Music creates a sound, which comes to us as a vibration, creating the acoustics that we both hear with our ears while also relating to these vibrations with our mind.  While most music today is created by musical instruments, before the advent of these instruments, the music that was created previously was done by the chanting of our voice alone.  These chants were used not just as a communication device from one person to another or in conjunction with another, but as a voice chanting to our Godhead, to help to focus and to touch our higher consciousness.


The beauty about music is that it is understood almost innately by humans, that is to say, in general, if music contains consonant melodies we associate it with pleasure, whereas if it contains dissonance it is perceived as unpleasant.  It is music that we listen to or that we create that enables us to feel or to experience or to have expressed emotions that mean something intrinsically consequential to us.  It is music that allows us to feel that ineffable joy of being conscious of what we are and to proclaim that feeling or emotion to others or to our God himself.  Music is far more than mere entertainment or an expression of joy; it is the essence of the cosmic vibration that through our understanding of and devotion to allows us to become one.  Music is that universal language for us because it crosses all cultures and all peoples in its ability to impart basic emotions, feelings, information, and devotion from one party to another from this world to the next that is both ineffable and sweet.