All we really need to be happy is something to look forward to….

The Sound of a Trumpet

The sound of a trumpet played well has a magical way of gripping my soul. It is the timber of the sound itself that gives it that power, not the intricacy of the notes or the melody of the song, although I like those too. And the sad thing is that the beauty of this instrument is almost impossible to record. To fully appreciate it you almost have to hear it live.
That is probably why I was so easily persuaded to join an obscure ( at least in the US) kind of musical group known as a British Brass Band. Americans think of brass bands as those marching musicians in parades or on football fields at halftime but the British variety perform on stage and wear jacket & tie.
Although trumpet is what I wanted to play, the opening available to me was Tenor Horn; an instrument that looks like a baby Baritone and sounds something like a French Horn. When played properly it makes a sound that can only be described as ‘a thousand years old’. The girl who played second chair next to me had the sound down perfectly even though she lacked the technical skills to be 1st chair. I had those skills but not the sound, I kept trying to sound like a trumpet.
The real reason I was in the band was a girl named Wendy. She played first chair Coronet, the instrument that replaces Trumpet in British Brass Bands. She was my ideal of female beauty but it was the sound she could make on that horn that made me want to worship her lips. I found it hard to play when the piece called for Tenor because it meant I could no longer concentrate on the sensuous sound coming from Wendy’s horn. I got to hear her play for three wonderful years until her graduation from music school ended our association. I almost said ‘affair’, I loved the sound so much.


Hell Belief

Prometheus Unbound

Three problems with it:

  • Hell belief is authoritarian. If it is true that most people go to hell, and it is eternal torture over flames to be there, then the only way to save yourself from such a ridiculous fate is to get with the program pronto and never fall out of line or question too much.
  • Because you may doubt your own salvation, hell belief sets up a viscous psychological cycle that drives one into self-recriminations and self-policing, accompanied by cowed submission before the authoritarian Father.
  • Capture-bonding. Hell belief tends to drive one into an emotional state akin to the experience of Winston Smith in Orwell’s chilling climax to 1984 (“He loved Big Brother”). It is the Stockholm Syndrome translated into religion (the source of love and hostage-taking is coming from the same source).

Hell belief is great for spreading religion, not so great for supporting the mental balance and critical…

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