Of all the great and beautiful things I’ve learned in my life, by very large measure, most of them have come after college. One particular pearl that stands out so clearly, probably, in part, because of the enchanting lady who taught it to me, was that music is not the notes of a piece of music but the space between the notes. She had already made my heart sing and now she made my mind sing with this amazing revelation. Her explanation set off a torrent of association in my mind.

After the romance was gone I kept the pearl. I dug deeper into it and found that it was Mozart that first made this observation. He said that it was the SILENCE between the notes that was the music, not just the space. I’ve shared this with others, just to see their reaction, and it’s always fun for me, but best of all it’s a great reminder for me that things are not always what they seem to be.

It helped me understand that like the poet, Dunne, said. “No man is an island”, and I needed that one a lot after getting wiped out in, all departments, in my middle twenties. Likewise, I could understand Vygotsky’s claim that, “We become ourselves through others”. I caught on, it’s the relationship between people that produces growth and beauty in them, and the growth and beauty are what God is looking for. We are the instruments that produce the divine music that everybody loves.

On a very personal, instructive basis it helped me see that I have to move on to the next note in my life to produce the music of my life. My life is more than two, three or four notes, it is many notes and undertakings, it is eight bars of life/music and more, I learn the melody of my life and the whole song, and the song is infinitely more than any of the notes in it.

I see that falling, as I have in my life, was a gift, a big bombastic attention getter in the composition of my song, and perhaps one day, a powerful symphony.