I came across this in yesterday’s NY Times: Does Simple Music Form Simple Faith?
I’m not really sure what to make of it, but I thought I’d pass it along. Essentially, the author asks if beautiful complex music (and other art) can actually be a hindrance to faith:
The church has reason to fear great beauty, hence the effort to rescue our attention, through plainspoken and deliberately flat-footed modern texts, from the mesmerizing graces of the Latin Mass or the splendid poetry of the Anglican Church’s Book of Common Prayer. I am one small example, having spent the Sunday mornings of my youth in the Episcopal Church allowing Thomas Cranmer’s magical imagery and liquid liturgical responses to roll off my tongue without a thought to God at all.
It’s not always easy to distinguish the aesthetic and religious impulses, and I’ve met a fair number of Christians who identify refined spirituality with good taste. So, I wonder if he’s not on to something here.