Iranian Philosophical and theosophical views toward music and its acceptance by Youth Musicians*
Most Islamic philosophers consider music as one the four elements of mathematics following Aristotle’s quadrivium: arithmetic، geometry، music، and astronomy. However، the philosophers usually avoid engaging the issues related to what music really does when perceived by man and how it can improve the life of man on earth. At the same time، Sufists and mystics manly focus on the later issue. Based on theosophical view، music has something in connecting the God and his creator، while in philosophical view it is mainly a subject which can be studied like other mathematical issues. To investigate the place of philosophical and theosophical way of looking at music among the contemporary Iranian youngsters a filed study conducted for this project. A survey including 5 questions which addressed the main issues in traditional philosophical and theosophical views toward music provided and some 400 music students from three rejoins of Iran including Tehran، Isfahan and Gilan participated in this study. The average age of subjects were 21 and were nearly half girls and half boys. Result of this study reviled that some 72% of subjects believe that music is relatively comparable to the order of cosmos. The result also showed that some 15% of the subjects think that such comparisons are nonsense، which is a relatively considerable percentage among Iranian musicians. Although، I could still find supporters for idea of cosmos-music relation in this study، when I came to investigate if youngsters believe in mystical idea that human is such an instrument in the hand of God، I found 31% believed that such idea is acceptable if one is in right mood of his connection with God. Some 31% disagreed with this idea. This study showed that there is still a strong believe that music is a media for communication between the man and his creator. Only 16% believe that music is a result of physical vibration and is incapable of delivering any message from God. A huge percentage of participants (62%) believed that music has a higher status than visual arts in theosophical activities (the idea came from Ibn Arabi’s theosophical view). Relating different traditional tunes to the certain time and places (Oqat-e Taghanni) nearly some 60% in one way or another believed that such an idea could take place even though some updates have to be included on ancient treatises. The examination of way of thinking of young Iranian musicians on mystical and philosophical ideas regarding music showed that they have different believes on different issues and there is no way of generalizing the fact that if they believe on old philosophical and theosophical facts as a general rule. For instance، while majority of them do not believe that they “act as an instrument in the hand of God”، a considerable percentage of them believe “God can communicate with human through music.” The study also revealed that there is a diverse ideology on every single philosophical or theosophical issue among the youngsters. In other words، the society is very colourful in ideas and believes.
Honar-Ha-Ye-Ziba: Honar-Ha-Ye Mosighi Va Namayeshi, No. 49, 2014
17 - 24
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