This was written as an assignment for my grade 12 religion class, which I recently re-discovered. Interesting for me to read, to see how it aligns with that which I believe now, but likely boring as hell for others. Enjoy at your own risk.

It may seem odd that music should make an appearance in my philosophy of life. However, I believe that it has made a huge impact, both in my life and in the world in general. For me, music allows for an escape from everyday life. Perhaps this is because I play it so loud in my room that it blocks out things such as the phone and doorbell. Either way, it is nice that I can come home after a long or boring day at school/work, turn on my stereo, and listen to whatever I feel like listening to. Music has a huge ability to affect mood, and I am no exception to this. If I am feeling tired or bored, a loud, fast song does just the trick to make me feel alive once again. On the other hand, if it is late and I am still wide awake, a ballad from one of my favourite bands will help me relax. Somebody once said that music is what feelings sound like. Perhaps it is because artists put so much feeling into their music that it can have such an effect on my own.

On a more worldly scale, music is the universal language – it brings everybody together, without the need for words or other communication. The core components of music – tempo, key, rhythm – are all universal standards, which makes creating music with people who do not speak your language incredibly easy. Although I have not had such an experience myself, one of my friends went on a world tour with his family a few years ago. He is musically inclined, and so it was only natural that he would find other musically inclined people in the places he visited. One of these places was Tanzania. When he returned, he told me the story of the song he learned in Swahili while he was there. He had no idea what the lyrics meant, but that didn’t matter, as he enjoyed the rhythm and the song was catchy. If I asked him to sing the song today, I have no doubt that he would be able to, even though it was years ago that he learned it.