Many people may know the term The Power of Music. However, what does exactly it mean?
We are launching this Listening to Music series to share our experiences of listening to music and its powerful impact on us. We also hope this series provides some insights to develop music appreciation.
Why do we listen to music? Does music help us get through our days or relax in the evening? While listening to music today may or may not be necessary for survival, it does change our chemical composition and our mental state. In a nutshell, listening to music is pleasurable and rewarding. That’s the power of music.
Table of Contents
What is Music?
By definition, music is the rational organization of sounds and silences passing through time. Sounds (tones) are arranged in some consistent, logical, and enjoyable way. The word music comes from the Greek word Muses.
The speed of vibration within the sound wave, also known as the frequency of the pitch, determines the high or low pitch. Moreover, the width of the wave reflects its volume.
The Power of Music on the Brain
We use music in every aspect of our life. Think about the major milestones in our lives – births, anniversaries, deaths; we use music to celebrate and to comfort.
Neuroscientists at Harvard University have done studies showing music has the power to heal.
When sound waves reach us, our inner ear transforms them into electrical signals that go through various parts of the brain. Then, they analyze a particular characteristic of the sound, such as pitch, color, dynamics, duration, familiality, etc. This process causes a chemical change in the human brain that profoundly affects how we feel and behave.
The human response can be to relax when hearing soothing music. On the other hand, if the musical impulses come strongly at regular intervals, it can stimulate us to get up and dance.
It is the most beautiful scene where families and friends gather around a piano or any other available instruments in a living room, singing songs, listening to music, and celebrating. These casual music scenes create deep family and friend bonds.
The euphoria of a concert in a large venue or music fest is not only about the great music. It is about connection and unity. Most likely, you may hear more great music with your headphones. However, physically being there makes you part of the community. It’s the power of music to make us feel united and connected.
To Wrap Up…
Listening to music or making music rouses the humanity within us. The power of music in our lives eases our pain and makes us feel alive. We tend to hear low, soft tones as relaxing and high, loud ones as exciting.
Each day, almost everyone listens to music, regardless of where you are and who you are, whether intentionally or not. Your smartphone comes with at least one app for music. Enjoy!
Related: Listening to Music Series