A Musical Religion
by Moriah Belch
I didn’t grow up in a very religious house. As a matter of fact, I think I’ve been to church three times and temple twice. My mom comes from a Jewish family and my dad a Catholic family. As a child, my mom wasn’t taught much about her religion, so she grew up to be more spiritual than anything else. My dad was raised in a pretty religious Catholic family, as an altar boy attending Catholic schools. I can’t say that I believe strongly in Jewish or Christian principles, so when I found something I believed in, I put my heart into it.
I can’t say exactly when my faith in music was formed. I do know that it grew along with my knowledge of the art. As I learned more and enjoyed making music, I became a more lighthearted person. When I was younger I was a pretty irritable kid. To express my discontent, I would scream my head off, more often than not in someone’s face. Often, my mom couldn’t even tell what I was upset about. I remember actually feeling ill, my throat raw, my head pounding, sitting in my room crying after an “episode” and listening to the silence. I also recall how remarkably different the silence was after a loud sound from the depths of myself compared to regular silence. This form of releasing emotion didn’t stop as I got older. Sure, the incidents got less frequent, but I still found the need to screech when I was upset. Then, when I was about twelve, my mom decided to try and put that voice to use. She figured that if I had such a strong voice, I should use it for “good instead of evil”. I guess she wanted to stop the incessant screaming as well. I had been playing classical guitar for about three years, and I absolutely loved it. So I joined Tucson Girls Chorus, thus beginning the epoch of my emotional release through music. Soon singing became a big part of my life. I joined school choirs, and am now part of a community choir. I intend on singing through high school and college, maybe not as a profession, but most definitely as a hobby and tool for relaxation.
At this point in my life, I can’t imagine living without singing. After singing, I feel as if all my stress and tension has escaped me through my mouth, in the form of dulcet pitches and rhythms. I also enjoy sharing my music with people, making them feel through it as I do. I know that music has positively affected my life, and believe that it can do the same for others. Unlike some music aficionados, I don’t believe music can heal wounds or solve disputes on its own. The power of music can only do its wonders if one is willing to have faith in the energy music can create and share in its beauty.
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