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Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Melody and Harmony

Sometimes people use this very old expression, “unity in diversity.” I very much like the way Japanese speak—not about unity in diversity, but “harmony in diversity.”   There is this great diversity at every level—and diversity is part of the superabundance of life. Diversity is an absolute necessity for something to emerge and come into being.    
 - Ursula King

Melody is the single strand of music that is usually recognizable, familiar, and comfortable to our ears and voices.  Melody can be sung by one person, or by several in unison.  Melody is the story of life as we may imagine or wish it to have happened: simple, straight forward, independent, and tidy.   

Harmony derives from melody as different but related tones add depth and texture to the melody.  Harmony brings in the mysterious, the nearly recognizable, the not so familiar, and perhaps even the discordant.  Harmony requires more than one voice.  Harmony is the story of life as it most likely is: rich, layered, interconnected, and often messy.   

What are the songs of our lives, and are they mostly melody or harmony?   

If we are to truly embrace the wonder of life and the majesty of creation perhaps a beginning is learning to harmonize. 

"O sing to the Lord a new song; sing to the Lord, all the earth."
- Psalm 96

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