Table of Contents

Feelings and emotions

Melody. Music can be so powerful. But music's power comes in two very different versions: the power of melody and the power of song lyrics. A beautiful melody moves me directly, making me feel. I feel the beauty of the melody in my body. Thinking isn't involved. Rachmaninoff is one of the great masters of melody. Khatia Buniatishvili's piano style is perfectly suited to his passion. Listen to one of the most gorgeously melodic compositions of all time, Rach 2 II.

Heart and soul. Other musical elements like harmony, rhythm, dynamics, orchestral color and song lyrics may contribute to a composition but melody is the essence. Without it the other elements are empty, mere decoration at best. Melody is the heart and soul of music and it speaks to my heart and soul. A beautiful melody speaks to me directly, via my body. Not to my thinking but my ears, my sensibilities. A beautiful melody is memorable. I recognize it right away. Melody moves me in a deep, wordless, essential way; it speaks directly to wisdom in me. My body is wisdom. My ears and sensibilities are wisdom. My body is the part of me that is Leela.

Lyrics. Songs lyrics are designed to manipulate me by engaging my thinking. Tearjerkers are the famous example, designed to manipulate my emotions, to jerk the tears out of me. A good lyricist knows how to use the manipulative power of words to trigger specific emotions. In the hands of a real artist a tearjerker can be a real work of art.

Patriotic songs and sports fight songs are another example, designed get people all worked up. But there's nothing real going on. I'm not in a life situation that's making me cry, or get all worked up; it's pure manipulation, words triggering emotions. Lyrics are lies. If I'm lucky, beautiful lies. Janis admitted it was just a phase she went through in high school.

Feelings v. emotions. So pure music moves me within the realm of feelings, lyrics within the realm of emotions; what's the difference? Emotions are mental; feelings aren't.

Obsession. Emotions link to certain triggering thoughts; once I have the triggering thought, I become obsessed, thinking the thought over and over, each time triggering the emotion in a vicious cycle. Emotions are a mild form of mental illness we all suffer from.