In the eight or so years I’ve been blogging about spiritual practices, I can’t believe I’ve never mentioned music. I imagine this is because listening to music is not my “go to” spiritual practice, but it sure is my husband’s. Music is magic to him. It brings me great joy to watch him unwind at night with his headphones on, or cry with a moving piece from Les Misérables, or happily follow a rabbit trail on the computer about how a rock band ended up with the exact song it did. I realize this love of music is true for many people.
I’m not sure why it’s not for me. As my honey would tell you, I’ve got millions of random lyrics in my head from the 50s to the mid 80’s, but my catalog stops there (except for every show tune known to man). The mid 80’s is when my children came along and the last thing I wanted was more noise in my life.
But lately, with all the pain in the world, music has again been ministering to my soul. In December when I retired, I gave myself the gift of a virtual pilgrimage to Ireland and Scotland with Christine Valters Painter. It was amazing. Along the way there was a Scottish musician, Simon De Voil, that led us through his music, much of which came from Christine’s poetry put to music. I was lucky enough to win a drawing of Simon’s, Canticle of Creation CD. It tells the story of St. Brighde, St. Gobnait, and St.Columba, plus other contemplative offerings. I start many mornings just listening to this beautiful music. It is somehow healing my soul.
So maybe music is already a healing practice for you. Maybe you listen, or sing, or play an instrument. Maybe you dance to worship songs in your bedroom. But perhaps, like me, you’ve forgotten the power of music to heal. I suggest if it’s been a while, you give music another try. Perhaps your tastes have changed over time, and you need to try something new. Perhaps a live concert will restart your love for music. Things are opening up again, so this might be an option.
I’d love to hear how you feel about music. Is it part of your spiritual life? What gives you joy – a blast of Queen, or a symphony? What music do you recommend I try?
Music is a gift to the world and the world needs all the creativity we can give it right now. Thank you, Simon, and all who bring this gift to us.