Blinded by the Light
The first songs I loved in life were Christian songs. Looking back, it makes sense to me that one of the first Bob Dylan songs I was blown away by was "Father of Night" off of 1970's New Morning. I later took to the music of Leonard Cohen, I'm sure in part, because of the spiritual themes embedded deep in his voice. In Cohen's songs, God is Grand Central Station. Everything runs through a spiritual understanding of the world. It's been said that Cohen never "met a religion he didn't like". I kinda feel the same way. I identify as a Christian-that is my inherited faith tradition, and the paradigm I view the world through. While I no longer label myself as an evangelical (sorry there's too much to discuss there) as I don't subscribe to the atonement theory or believe in hell, there's still so much in the Christian tradition that deeply resonates with me every day. Like hymns, otherwise known as songs of incredible depth and beauty.
Below, you can hear some of my favorites: "Rock of Ages", a hymn that dates back to 1763, contains a few dramatic takes on the human condition as it pairs human frailty with a melodious triumph. "Blessed Assurance" is a slowly moving testament to future hopes. Lastly, "O Come O Come Emmanual" is a haunting, minor cord meditation on the birth of Christ and the hope that charity, spirituality, and morality can bring the world.
"O come, thou Wisdom from on high and order all things, far and nigh,To us, the path of knowledge show, and cause us in her ways to go.
O come, Desire of nations, bind all peoples in one heart and mind,
Bid envy, strife, and quarrels cease; fill the whole world with heaven's peace".