Music

Music should strike fire from the heart of man, and bring tears from the eyes of woman.

Every man's work, whether it be literature or music or pictures or architecture or anything else, is always a portrait of himself, and the more he tries to conceal himself the more clearly his character appear in spite of him.

Benevolence is not in word and in tongue, but in deed and in truth. It is a business with men as they are, and with human life as drawn by the rough hand of experience. It is a duty which you must perform at the call of principle; though there be no voice of eloquence to give splendor to your exertions, and no music of poetry to lead your willing footsteps through the bowers of enchantment. It is not the impulse of high and ecstatic emotion. It is an exertion of principle. :You must go to the poor man’s cottage, though no verdure flourish around it, the gentleness of its murmurs. If you look for the romantic simplicity of fiction you will be disappointed; but it is your duty to persevere in spite of every discouragement. Benevolence is not merely a feeling but a principle; not a dream of rapture for the fancy to indulge in, but a business for the hand to execute.

There have been men who could play delightful music on one string of the violin, but there never was a man who could produce the harmonies of heaven in his soul by a one-stringed virtue.

Poetry is the music of thought, conveyed to us in music of language.

Music has charms to soothe a savage breast, to soften rocks, or bend a knotted oak. I’ve read that things inanimate have moved, and, as with living souls, have been informed by magic numbers and persuasive sound.

We settle things by a majority vote, and the psychological effect of doing that is to create the impression that the majority is probably right. Of course, on any fine issue the majority is sure to be wrong. Think of taking a majority vote on the best music. Jazz would win over Chopin. Or on the best novel. Many cheap scribblers would win over Tolstoy. And any day a prizefight will get a bigger crowd, larger gate receipts and wider newspaper publicity than any new revelation of goodness, truth or beauty could hope to achieve in a century.

The direct relation of music is not to ideas, but to emotions - in the works of its greatest masters, it is more marvelous, more mysterious than poetry.

They [trees] hang on from a past no theory can recover. They will survive us. The air makes their music. Otherwise, they live in savage silence, though mites and nematodes and spiders teem at their roots, and though the energy with which they feed on the sun and are able to draw water sometimes hundred of feet up their trunks and into their twigs and branches calls for a deafening volume of sound.

Character is the product of daily, hourly actions, and words and thoughts; daily forgiveness, unselfishness, kindnesses, sympathies, charities, sacrifices for the good of others, struggles against temptation, submissiveness under trial. Oh, it is these, like the blending colors in a picture or the blending notes of music which constitute the man.

All music - since its though is upon melody and rhythm - must be the earthly representation of the music there is in the rhythm of the Ideal Realm.

They all were ravished by a glimpse of heaven, where everything is known and yet forgiven, and all that is not music is pure silence.

Music is harmony, harmony is perfection, perfection is our dream, and our dream is heaven.

To know how to suggest is the great art of teaching. To attain it we must be able to guess what will interest; we must learn to read the childish soul as we might a piece of music. Then, by simply changing the key, we keep up the attraction and vary the song.

Where words fail, music speaks.

Music exalts each joy, allays each grief, expels diseases, softens every pain, subdues the rage and poison and of plague.

A verbal art like poetry is reflective; it stops to think. Music is immediate, it goes on to become.

Music is a universal language, and needs not be translated. With it soul speaks to soul.

Music washes away from the soul the dust of every-day life.

Music, not being made up of objects nor referring to objects, is intangible and ineffable; it can only be, as it were, inhaled by the spirit: the rest is silence.