skill in wisdom

“When a maestro conducts a symphony, which of course the composer ‘heard’ in his or her head first, the symphony depends on each instrument doing its own work in keeping with its own distinctive character, and as close to a perfected art as possible. There can be no reduction of all instruments to some homogeneous totality. The very nature of musical meaning is that it is precisely many distinctive sounds (on the scale) and many distinctive kinds of instruments (playing with each other), blending, doing counterpoint, and all the rest to produce something greater than the sum of the parts.”

Those words are from Jim Skillen. Some years ago we were talking about the kind of justice that must exist between peoples internationally if peace among nations is to be achieved. Jim said that he had been thinking about this, “trying to find an image to capture the sense of a larger communal whole.” He came up with symphonic justice.

With so much war ongoing in our world for thirteen straight years, and which shows no signs of ending but of becoming increasingly worse, it almost seems abnormal to think about orchestrating peace. But we must. We must. And we must not only think about it. We must engage in orchestrating peace sans weapons of war if there is to be any hope of reversing the trend.

Sometimes when I get overwhelmed by it all, I turn to music, so I leave you today with this, an exceptional five-minute music video: War/No More Trouble.

Someone heard it in his head first, saw the possibilities, arranged it with like-minded others, and then put it out there for all to learn what is possible. I hope it inspires you as it always does me. (Heads up – You actually need to watch the video, not just listen to the song, if you want to experience the full force of what is possible.)

©2015 by Charles Strohmer

Image via permission of Creative Commons.

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“WAR/NO MORE TROUBLE” playing for change

diplomacy or warWhen a war is being waged, diplomacy gets shushed in the corridors of power and marginalized by the media. Wars running concurrently intensify the quietism. When those wars are running a long time – the war on terrorism, the war about Iraq, the war in Afghanistan – one may be forgiven for concluding that diplomacy has been completely scrubbed from the nation’s lexicon. Sans diplomacy, the next logical step would be perpetual war. Although there are ideologues in America subtly arguing for that next step, there has been a great sense of relief across America the past few years to see diplomacy making a resurgence in Washington.

Rumors of wars will continue, and more wars will occur, but those who are discerning that this is a time for peace, and may it be a long time, please God, are wiser than those who want war. Rather than me rambling for a few more minutes on this, jump to this song, “War/No More Trouble.” A brilliant production, musically and lyrically. Enjoy. And be inspired.

©2014 by Charles Strohmer