This is a question that in recent years has become more relevant, (if we do not count that Plato himself had already talked about this) Many studies have been done by several universities, there’s even one where the subject was introduced into an MRI machine while playing and all the readings lit up like a Christmas tree!
The Mozart effect became fashionable and we find countless playlists on all platforms with «music to do homework» «music to study» and a long etcetera. Someone even released a whole series of videos that used Mozart’s music to help have «smarter babies».
But all this maelstrom of studies, information and reports mention something that most people disdain almost unconsciously. A very important condition for the musical phenomenon to make a significant dent in our development, in the plasticity of our gray matter and the generation of new connections between our body and intellect: We must participate in the musical phenomenon in an ACTIVE way.
Active Listening vs. passively
Music is so wonderful that just listening to it can change our mood. There is music that is of little consequence that it only serves as background music for some video on social networks.
If we are playing a video game, or watching a movie, music plays an important role, it is like an emotional guide. Listening to music just for listening to music for many people is a common practice, so much so that they go to concerts, watch videos of this and even use sitting headphones without doing anything but listening to music.
But this will not necessarily contribute to our development beyond an aesthetic sense, which is already very good! But if we want to reach the true richness of music, we have to participate in it.
It’s not always about playing an instrument
The act of playing an instrument or singing are already ways of actively participating, but they are not the only ones. To participate actively in the musical phenomenon we must consciously involve our body. Dancing is a form and performing exercises that express the musical elements is another way of doing so, this is one of the premises of the Dalcroze Method, moving with music, reacting to the stimuli of music through activities designed by a teacher is one of the more rewarding ways to participate in music without necessarily being a musician. Music should not be the prerogative of a select minority, but the right of every human being. EVEN WITHOUT PLAYING AN ISTRTRUMENT.
Fortunately, there are more and more Dalcroze eurhythmics teachers in the world and this allows more and more people to participate actively in music, even without being musicians.
Listening to music will help shape our taste, but participating in it will help shape our intellect and spirit.
Turn on your inner musician
Make music with the whole body the first way we make music without realizing it, the important thing is to improve this musical connection between our intellect and body as we grow. We can walk to the music to improve our ability to listen and transmit that message to our body, we can sing only in our imagination (without «humming» anything) to improve our ability to materialize abstract thinking, to achieve this we could read the lyrics of a song without pronouncing a single sound. In short, there are many activities that can be done with music, but many of them need the guidance of a teacher. The most important thing is to start. Do these simple activities and if our interest is aroused, then you will go back for more and more.
In short I could say what a friend told me: «Soccer is a great sport that helps us a lot physically, but you have to practice it, not just watch it».
The advantage of music is that we can become «high performance audiences»!