At Mount Sinai, Master Moshe heard sublime music. It was a kind of symphony written for many voices. This symphony was written by the Godhead, and according to various legends, it was Abraham who taught this heavenly music to Moses. In fact, each person was supposed to learn to play his special tune in an instrument that we know as the physical body.
What we now call the Torah scroll is nothing more than an effort by Moses, his disciples and prophets to preserve this music as a text. Supposedly some kind of musical score. But like a musical piece, just reading the score is not the music. It must be played to experience it. This experience was never experienced by mankind in full force, but rarely by the power of a certain spiritual training under the guidance of spiritual masters who reached this hearing to some extent. The phenomenon of prophecy was the ability to hear this music, but also here, probably partially. It takes the whole orchestra to hear and experience the full effect. If we were educated to play this music, there would be a special energy on earth that would change the consciousness of the human race, extract it from the shackles of enslavement to false ideas, weaken the intensity of hatred that people feel toward each other; a deeper understanding of the purpose of creation was supposed to be the share of human beings. We would understand what it means to do what we do, what the importance of the right thought is. We humans have the capability to think thoughts and fulfill them on earth. Even when we think a thought and do not actually apply it, the energy behind it solidifies in the physical world. In particular, we are now experiencing the impact of the negative thoughts that we have thought over the past thousands of years. These thoughts have exacerbated the state of Mother Earth, diseases and disasters are our share, and the situation is only getting worse.
Even if only ten percent of us would bother to learn to play the music written by Moses, the situation on earth would have improved without recognition. Perhaps most wars would have been avoided and suffering would have been reduced by at least eighty percent.
Moses' disciples may have known this; he may have given them a certain experience, even when the human orchestra refused to function. Apparently, the role of the Tribes of Israel was at first to do nothing – to understand that everyone has a role to learn.
What happened at Mount Sinai? The tribes were asked to sit still and do nothing. Doing nothing – sitting at rest and waiting, this is the most difficult thing for people. But due to the process through which the Children of Israel passed, there was the hopeful expectation that they will trust his words. The Torah is telling us that the Children of Israel did experience in actual fact the manifestation of Cosmic powers in the service of Master Moses.
Left for a few days and all their experiences faded in the dust of the desert.
It is interesting that some masters outside Judaism confirm that the story in the Torah is true. From where do they have the visionary power to see it? It is implied that this can be reached through special spiritual training to levels of consciousness that allow to examine past events, which are engraved in the universal mind. As each one of us has the sub-conscious mind, which is an infinite storage of memories, so does exist a cosmic sub-conscious mind, that any movement is being recorded. In various spiritual schools, it is being called the Akashic Records.
In the process of studying music – which I see as the closest thing to what Moses intended to establish – the first thing is learning to know the instrument. At this stage we do nothing. It can be a short period or long, according to the talents of the pupil. Presumably, the first few hundred years the Children of Israel spent after Moses' departure were dedicated to this process, and later on to play the music under the guidance of those who have passed through special mental training and this was the role of the Cohanim, (priests) who presumably received special "keys" from master Moses his brother and the prophets.
The music that we hear and experience when we visit a performance by an orchestra or a group of musicians is a fabric of sounds mixed with mathematical preciseness to generate harmonies that do not exist in nature.
The ability to write music that does not exist in the world implies to us that we humans have the ability to create. The world in which we live is actually what we created by virtue of our thoughts in ancient times.
All creation is actually a show, a manifestation of sounds. Before creation there is no movement, no sounds, and no consciousness. Movement produces sounds, and sounds generate consciousness. And in order to generate supreme consciousness, sounds must be woven at supreme levels. With the ability to think and talk, which characterizes and distinguishes the person, we can develop the intellect and the ability to solve problems, but there is no superior spiritual energy here, a faint echo from which we experience in a concert. The most wonderful music we hear in our ears today is a faint echo of the music that Moses intended to teach the world. This is not a unique attempt of Moses – efforts to rehabilitate the human "musical instrument” have been constantly made by superior masters throughout history, but it has never succeeded except for closed circles of friends. It could have elevated human consciousness to heights that are almost unknown today, the controversies and quarrels between human beings would have almost disappeared, since all the participants would be aware of the need for contrasts and the unity of the human color spectrum. This would bring the physical creation back to its ancient Edenic State, as legends and the Torah depict, a world that we turned into hell since we thought that we are capable of writing better music, supposedly without contrast and contrapunkt[i], we thought to improve the creation, but we actually brought her to the brink of self-destruction.
This music cannot be taught by coercion. The Talmudic story of HaKadosh Baruch Hu (the Creator – The Holy One), imposing his teachings on the people of Israel, or else would destroying the world, seems, in my opinion, a metaphor for our state of mind that if we do not rise to a higher state of consciousness, we will destroy the world.
(One of the methods by which I read the Torah is to reverse the direction of things, ostensibly as "mirror vision” – when a hidden face of the text is exposed. For example, the way I read it – Cain slaughters the inner Hebel within himself. This is a metaphor for mental processes which are working constantly within us)
This spiritual energy, which supreme music generates, is extremely shy. The faintest element of coercion, fear, hatred and controversy kills her. This is what implies the "murder" of Hebel by Cain.
Is it possible to rehabilitate humanity that will once again play cosmic music on earth?
It always starts with taking personal responsibility. I can learn to play, take the difficult task of getting to know the instrument, train as steadily as necessary under the instructions of an instrumental expert, and learn to play together with a group of individuals who all need to learn to give up and listen to each other, under the "conducting" of an expert, who unites the fabric of all individual sounds into an experience that cannot be created individually.
Learning music may direct us to the goal, to a certain extent, but every music on earth, the highest written by the highest geniuses of music, is nothing more than a hint of what Moses proposed at the time, which we did not receive.
The practice of playing a musical instrument is a hint of playing the instrument that we received that allows us to express it in this sphere – implies the need to practice "playing" the physical and mental instruments we received. Almost all of us produce a sound from the force of life. But almost all people create squeaky sounds, since the focus of most humans has been lefted on coarse survival on earth. All humans contain the reservoir of sub-conscious mind, loaded with ugly monsters, which we have created over long periods of ignorant actions. Therefore, the construction of the private "musical instrument" requires a very long process of distilling the subconscious, because as long as these monsters exist, the sounds we create will not be harmonious. But the very process of learning and practicing music helps to distill the inner mental structures.
There is a clue in the Midrashim[ii] about what I propose here – that each one of us is a "letter" in the Torah. Each one of us is a note in the Universal musical score.
The original Torah, the cosmic poetry, we actually "broke" due to the course of life we chose, and because we received a kind of substitute of Torah engraved in stone, for people whose hearts turned to stone.
Despite the fact that all we have now is a written text, which is actually freezing the spirit of things, it still has the power to inspire over half of the human race, which believes in some or other versions of the Law of Moses, or were affected by it. It seems that Master Moses and his assistants planted behind the words a spiritual force that influences those who delve into things, so that despite everything quite a few people have achieved supreme levels of consciousness.
I see the stories of the Torah as metaphors for mental processes that take place inside us all the time. Master Moses was a supreme expert in the complex structure of the individual human soul, of the collective psyche of the so-called "human race", of the cosmic soul and above that.
It is possible that here and there on earth, there are circles that deal with it. But a circle of the same scope that Moses aspired to establish, the basis of which Abraham actually laid, probably has never been tried since.
(I have been studying music since the early 1970s. I am playing on the flute, piano and bassoon. I am participating with the Haifa wind band. (Non professionals)
Etzion Becker, Shavuot Eve 2019
(The article was published in the locale "Zman Mevaseret". It is a weekly paper distributing in Mevaseret Zion, Har Adar and local communities)
[i] In music, counterpoint is the relationship between two or more musical lines (or voices) which are harmonically interdependent yet independent in rhythm and melodic contour. … The term originates from the Latin punctus contra punctum meaning "point against point", i.e., "note against note".
[ii] Midrash is the traditional interpretation of the Torah by the Hebrew sages