Tuesday 1 November 2005

Theologians who love Mozart

Søren Kierkegaard: “I am like a young girl in love with Mozart, and I must have him in first place, cost what it may.”

Karl Barth: “With an ear open to your musical dialectic, one can be young and become old, can work and rest, be content and sad: in short, one can live.”

Hans Küng: Mozart’s music has “relevance for religion ... precisely through the compositional technique of the non-vocal, purely instrumental music, through the way in which music interprets the world, a way which transcends extra-musical conceptuality.”

Pope Benedict XVI (formerly Joseph Ratzinger): “His music is by no means just entertainment; it contains the whole tragedy of human existence.”


Jim said...

Well, I'm no Kierkegaard or Barth or Kung or even the Holy Father; but I must confess that I am simultaneously shocked and dismayed beyond words that I, the most vocal Mozartian among the bibliobloggers, did not even receive honorable mention on your list. *Sigh*.

tchittom said...

Doing some reading on Hans Urs von Balthasar a few years ago, I noted that he gave away his entire Mozart collection because he had them perfectly memorized and didn't need the records any longer.

Jim said...

Well that's just crazy.....

Ben Myers said...

Thanks, Thom -- I didn't know this. Von Balthasar was a tremendously cultured aristocrat who knew a great deal about Mozart. Referring to Karl Barth's love of Mozart, he once remarked smugly that Barth enjoyed "the simpler pieces".

Ben Myers said...

Yes, I'm sure you're right. And of course von Balthasar admired Barth almost as much as he admired Mozart!

Michael Dodaro said...

Here's a perspective on Mozart that may interest some of you: Mozart on Civility and Civil Rights
And a site that will probably make somebody angry: Alienated in Church

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