- 人文科学研究 (キリスト教と文化) = Humanities: Christianity and Culture (ISSN:00733938)
- no.40, pp.41-54, 2009-03-31
Why Does Music Exist? Why does music exist? Different from other animals, the human beingshave natural nature to think and to express themselves by various means.One of such means is the language, but if they cannot use the language, theytry to express themselves by movements of their bodies, or by using colors,shapes or sounds. They also have natural nature to pursue and honor thebeauty and therefore try to express themselves in a way that they believe themost beautiful expression. As a result they have produced the literature bymeans of language, the dance and the drama by movements of bodies, thefine arts by means of shapes and colors, and the music by means of sounds.These are essential elements to their lives. One can perhaps define the music as “aesthetic expression by means ofsounds,” but the problem is whether there is the general consensus of whatis beautiful. What is considered beautiful by some people may be felt uglyby others. As a result there are a variety of musical expressions in the worldand each nation has its own music. In Europe the musical tradition goesback to Christian chants, of which the oldest is singing of the psalms, thecustom that Christianity inherited from Judaism. The most important ofearly Christian chants is the Roman chant, better known as Gregorian chant,which has become the starting point of later European music, both sacredand secular. As specific examples the speaker wishes here to demonstrateeight different reciting tones of Psalm 110 (or Psalm 109 in Latin), theLutheran chorale “Christ lag in Todesbanden” and Bach’s cantata based onthe chorale, and a performance of a popular pianist based on a Gregorianmelody.