Music: The bat out of hell
While walking through a store a few days ago, I heard a mother tell her child that she shouldn’t listen to the music being played on the shop’s stereo. It was Tool.
“It’s the Devil. You don’t want to go to hell, now. Do you?” They walked out of the store.
I was tempted to go up to her outside and ask what is wrong with the kind of music being played. I didn’t. Instead, I asked a very religious friend of mine.
He said that a lot of people believe that some music – specifically rock, metal and rap – are seen as tools of the Devil to ensnare people into Satanic lifestyles.
Anything new and different is initially seen as bad. Classical music for enjoyment was probably seen as an abomination over hymns. Rock was seen as a destruction of folk music. Rap, R&B and Hip-Hop was viewed as foul and Metal seen as pure evil.
Now, these genres are the norm. Some get more radio play than others, and some are more successful, but commercial success aside – the music ain’t hurting anyone. If anything, it just gives different people different forms of expression to which they identify.
I reckon people who feel as if they should not be exposed to certain types of music for fear of being tempted are just not secure enough in their faith.
If your faith can be shaken by a song, you should be questioning your faith; not the music.
It’s just like not wanting to read The Da Vinci Code because it (fictionally) interrogates Church teachings and ‘secrets’.
Even as an atheist, I think The Da Vinci Code is a load of poppycock. If someone who is predisposed to dislike religious teachings thinks that a text which riles up the Church is bull, why not let your Christian children decide that for themselves, too?
The same goes for music.
Any form of expression should not be suppressed – for this much I have always been an advocate. But to shelter oneself or one’s family from cultural expression is to say that everything that goes against one’s belief should be forbidden.
Are those people really that unconfident in belief that they have to keep away from the rest of the world?
If anything, expression that goes against what one believes should be welcomed. It is healthy debate as to where one’s faith lies, how unshakable it is, and – if need be – a questioning of whether that belief is true for that person or not.
So many songs have spoken to my non-belief. These songs have not prompted my lack of faith. Only added to it. They have given me poetry by which to explain why I believe what I believe.
None of it has shaken my belief or lack thereof.
I reckon religious, political or whatever radicals should stop using music as an excuse and embrace the ‘other’.
If we didn’t have the cultural debate that music creates, it would be a pretty boring world.