Rosicrucian Writings Online

The Ministry of Music

By Soror Violet Cowger
(Director of Musical Instruction, Rose-Croix University)
[From The Rosicrucian Digest March 1935]
TO MANY persons, music is a form of entertainment. To some it is a means of culture, self-expression, and refinement. To others it is a relief from trouble, care, and distress. To a few it is an agency through which the vibrations of thought may be lifted to a higher state of consciousness, bringing to the individual healing in many problems and the realization of a finer existence.
Considering any or all of these classifications, it may be said that music is a ministry, giving to all the quality they desire to obtain through it. However, it is the last, and probably the least considered classification, with which this article is designed to impress the reader.
Bearing in mind that music is a channel through which we may reach a higher state of consciousness, let us mentally view the millions of people who attend religious services. To large numbers of these, the music heard in Temples, Cathedrals, Churches and Missions, is more expressive of the Divine than any other part of the ceremony. For this purpose, the greatest composers known to the world have given of their highest ability that millions may, through the exalted vibrations of tone, lift their consciousness to the realization of reverent Worship, Joy and Peace. Many of these melodies are so impressive that the individual carries the consciousness of them throughout daily activities. Surely it may be said, then, that those who produce such music have performed a sacred ministry, using music as a constructive agency to radiate Cosmic Vibrations of a higher consciousness.
Let us consider the millions throughout the world who attend concerts of the highest type of classical compositions, performed by symphony orchestras, string quartets, trios, vocal ensembles and soloists. Here again we find highly trained artists, at the height of ability, giving forth vibrations of tone that express the depths of emotion, including the widest range of thought from the worship of Deity to the simplest emotion of the human experience. Vast audiences are swayed by these vibrations. Human thought is uplifted until the individual consciousness is removed from daily problems and carried to a height of enjoyment that colors the life and activities of the person for a period of time following. This again is constructive service on the part of the musician, for the individual who receives the impression of these vibrations, although often unaware of it, has received an impetus that carries him to a higher sense of existence, coloring to some extent his various activities.
Nowhere is music a greater ministry than when taught in the public schools. Here thousands of young children are awakening to a sense of the vibrations of tone. The constant practice on instruments and in voice, constitutes a training in general poise and musical appreciation that has a decidedly elevating effect on the child's general health, personal appearance, and mental point of view. Some colleges of the present day have included in their curriculums the training of verse choirs which may be classified as a form of "Spoken Music," the voices being chosen for the harmonious rise and fall of tone in the interpretation of the finest gems of literature. Visualize, if you will, the highly elevating and constructive character of this training on the student, who is learning to express in tones of voice the very highest ideals in poetry and verse, and the uplifting vibrations given the audiences of their many concerts.
In conclusion, let us look into the studio of the private teacher. How great indeed is the opportunity for constructive service for the teacher who works with one individual at a time. Careful analysis and devoted attention to the student will reveal where the mental viewpoint may be changed so as to remove sickness, correct wrong personal habits, improve personal appearance, create fine poise, and elevate the entire character of the individual. Truly may we say that the Cosmic Vibrations of Music are a Ministry.

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