Friday, February 23, 2007

Ears to Hear

As Mr. Beldman quickly pointed out the idea that sound carries a clearly primary position in either the OT or NT in encountering God is slightly naive. However, I would like to add two quotes that offer further consideration of the primacy of sound (particularly music) in how we encounter reality.

The first is from Rowan Williams in Where God Happens,
The language of worship reminds us of one theological reason why language matters to Christians. In worship, we try to 'put ourselves under the Word of God,' as the saying is; we try to bring minds and hearts into harmony with with what God has said and is saying, in Jesus and in the words of Scripture. We remember that God made all things by an act of self-communication, and when we respond to his speaking, we are searching for some way of reflecting, echoing that self-communication. . . . To borrow an image that appears in some of the ancient Hindu texts, we might think of the creative Word as spoken into the vast cavern of potential that is the first moment of creative existence; from that darkness come countless echoes of the first eternal Word, the 'harmonics' hidden that primal sound."

The second quote is from Anne Lamott's Traveling Mercies where is describing how to drastically different people came to find a moment of unity and intimacy. She writes,
I can't imagine anything but music that could have brought about this alchemy. Maybe it is because music is about as physical as it gets: your essential rhythm is your heartbeat; your essential sound, the breathe. We're walking temples of noise, and when you add tender hearts to this mix, it somehow lets us meet in places we couldn't get to any other way."


Unknown said...

"You came near and stood at the foot of the mountain while it blazed with fire to the very heavens, with black clouds and deep darkness. Then the LORD spoke to you out of the fire. You heard the sound of words but saw no form; there was only a voice."
- Dt 4:11-12

Dave said...

don’t take my comment to meant that I disagree with your argument that in the bible word is primary--I am reformed after all and we have always stressed the importance of the word.