Dr. Vijai S Shankar MD.PhD.
Published on www.academy-advaita.com
31th October 2017
Sound of Music
The enlightened have declared that life is a play of light and sound. This signifies that daily life is an illusion of light and sound though daily life appears real to the conditioned human mind.
It is indeed very difficult for man to understand how daily life could be an illusion of light and sound. The wise scriptures too mention that the life is illusory and not real.
So what could the deep understanding be that would enable man or woman to understand that daily life is indeed a play of light and sound is the question?
One of the important parts of daily life that needs to be understood deeply, which could help in understanding that daily life indeed is a play of light and sound, is ‘words’ that humans use every day.
A phoneme is a unit of sound. A unit is a part of the complete or incomplete, to mean that the complete or incomplete is made up of units or parts. An atom too is a unit because everything and everyone complete or incomplete is made up of atoms. Similarly, light too is made up of units or parts. A unit of light or a part of light is a photon.
Sound too is made up of units or parts. Music is sound and everyone understands this. A unit or a part of a sound is a phoneme. This means that music is made up of units or phonemes.
A word in any language is made up of letters. This is understood by all. A letter in any language is a unit of a complete or incomplete word. A letter is, however, a phoneme, meaning a unit of sound. This indicates that a complete or an incomplete word is a collection of phonemes or units of sound.
This is obvious because any sound or music heard by the human is sound, because the human ear receives only sound-waves. It is also obvious that a foreign language is sound. This signifies that a letter or a word in a particular, familiar language is sound.
Every letter in the alphabet is followed by the next. For example, the letter ‘A’ is followed by the letter ‘B’ and ‘C’ and so on until the letter ‘Z’. Each letter is separate from the next letter in the alphabet.
Every word is separate from the next word in any language. This is understood by everyone. The significance of the alphabet indicates that, in a word, every letter is separate from the next letter that follows in a word.
This implies that a word is a collection of letters or collection of phonemes or units of sound. Daily life is seen because of light and the seen is understood because of words and words are nothing but a collection of sounds.
Therefore, the deep understanding of daily life is: daily life is a play of light and sound, because the seen and the known are ‘words’ and ‘words’ are sound. When this deep understanding of daily life happens, man or woman will understand that daily life is illusory and not real.
Author: Dr. Vijai S. Shankar
© Copyright V. S. Shankar 2017
Seeing and hearing are arguably the most precious faculties gifted to living creatures by the intelligence of life. Impairment to or loss of either faculty is keenly felt where it occurs and significant efforts are made to restore or alleviate the loss. Little wonder then that man attributes reality to whatever is seen or heard and, with this, high value to seeing and hearing.The deep understanding of the wise, as shared with each one of us in this article, opens the door to reality as it is.
Julian Capper, UK.
German Translator’s Note:
When a child grows up the sound of music and the sound of language accompany the child while growing up. While hearing them both appear as just music to the child first. Step by step the sound of language becomes words with meanings to the child and music remains music. The article by Dr. Shankar makes us understand that even words are still music to adult. And as we all love music, we relearn to love words in every variation, be it nice or not so nice words. This is the gift of the enlightened to humanity: Words become music again and we just listen to the sound of music played by daily life.
Marcus Stegmaier, Germany.