Ever been sad, turned on your MP3 player to a song that fit your mood, and then realized the song actually altered or enhanced your mood (even for the better)? *Hands raised* I for one know that this is true for me. I’ve written blogs before about how music can be the “soundtrack” for our lives. In this blog, I am reminded that music is also a very powerful “mood-changer” or in this case mood-maker.
I was honored to be invited to a special musical guest lecture with a renowned musician named Alpin Hong (see his webpage at www.alpinhong.com), and he forwarded the idea that certain musical notes, when put in combination, have the power to affect our mood, our emotions, and heighten sensations. He used the movie themes for superheroes such as Superman and how vastly different it was from the theme for Batman. He compared the use of music notes of superheroes versus those used for villains. Alpin also reminded those of us from the “Jaws” movie generation how two notes in succession created terror upon entering the waters of any open body of water. The fact is that science has proven for generations and study after study that music does do something to our mood – and as was noted by Alpin Hong, how musical notes can create joy or terror when we hear them.
In a study done at the University of Missouri, researchers not only found that music can improve our mood, but that music is therapeutic (see full article at http://wonderopolis.org/wonder/does-music-influence-your-mood). Further, according to the American Music Therapy Association, music therapy can be used to help people improve mood, restore energy, and heal more naturally (2015). Music, for generations now, has been a drug free form of therapy enhancement. But therapy is not the only place that music has had an impact.
Ever wonder why people who have had an “afterlife” or near-death experience said they heard music when they died (or almost died as the case may be)? Gilles Bedard, an expert on music and the near-death experience said it best that those who experience near-death have the sensation of being wrapped in “light” when hearing that music (see http://www.near-death.com/resources/music.html#a02). For those of us who have not had such an experience, the sensation of being wrapped in a welcoming source of light is comforting. This is a reassuring thought when one finally realizes that they have crossed over to the other side and into the afterlife – to be welcomed by the sounds of light.
In the fourth installment of The Last Prophet book series, Uriel’s Light, one of the supporting characters, Sheila, has her own experience of near-death. In each of the books in the series, we read and see how music and light go hand in hand when encountering those who have gone onto the afterlife. For some, it is too much to grasp, but for others, it gives hope that there is something beyond the here and now – that we will be with those we loved and lost again. Hold fast to that hope and everything will be alright. This message of hope, of light, and of the music that accompanies those who “visit” us in spirit, is what one feels when reading the ending of each of The Last Prophet books. Whatever our beliefs, music has the power to change, make, or affect our mood, and perhaps even our outlook.
How does music affect you? Please comment in the space provided.
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