New Age Music

I believe most here would agree that new age philosophy is really just a new name for pantheism, at best contrary to Christian teaching and and maybe even satanic… but how about so called “new age music”?

Let me state right off that for nearly 25 years I have enjoyed much of the recordings categorized by music companies as “new age” and have an extensive library. The music so classified varies greatly. Here is a cross-section of what I own:

[LIST]
*]“Abba Pater”: Featuring the spoken word and singing voice of Pope John Paul II set to ethereal background music.
*]Various recordings of ancient liturgical music such as Gregorian Chant, works of Hildegard of Bingen, and music of the Russian Orthodox Church.
*]The works of the Irish artist Enya who I have been told is a devout Catholic and had a private audience with JP II. Although much of her music is inspired by pre-Christian Celtic Ireland some of her songs sound like Christian hymns.
*]The works of Constance Demby. While I have considered some of her earlier instrumental works such as “Novus Magnificat” inspiring, she is defiantly into the new age philosophy which is worrisome.
[/LIST]

Now it must be pointed out that the classification of music is just a classification. Twenty years ago it was just a shelf in the record stores where the owners stashed music they couldn’t easily classify and now days it is just the same for Internet search sites. It seems to me that “Abba Pater” must be OK but what about the others. Even though Demby is a devout neo-pagan should we condemn all her music, some of which is quite inspiring? We don’t condemn all the works of Richard Wagner even though he was both anti Catholic and anti Semitic.

Your thoughts?

I think it’s a mistake to condemn any genre of music with a broad brush. Simply because new age music shares the same name as the philosophy/spirituality doesn’t mean they can be grouped together. It’s a musical style. There’s nothing inherently problematic about ethereal music.

If the lyrics seem problematic to you, then you can certainly opt not to listen to it if you believe it endangers your faith to hear. Beyond that, I’d say there’s nothing inherently wrong with new age music, if you’re into that sort of thing (I don’t really like it myself, but that’s just my tastes. ;)).

Thanks for the reply Joe. I was beginning to think my keyboard was typing in invisible ink. :o

I agree with you but one has to be careful. For many years Constance Demby was my favorite artist of the genre. I even published several glowing reviews of various recordings on amazon.com which she quoted on her own web site. She describes her music as “sacred space music” and it does have a definite uplifting “spiritual” quality about it. Last year I noticed a title not in my collection and without reading the fine print purchased a download. Much to my disappointment it turned out to be a directed meditation with verbal instructions for “aligning one’s chakra energy”… Right out of Hindu teachings!

I will be more careful in the future but I still may enjoy her music based on the Latin mass and other forms of Christian devotion. That is, if I can listen to it without thinking about Hindu gods!

Happy to help! :wink: Sorry to hear about your experience. That’s interesting that she has music based on Catholic/Christian things and also Hindu things. I suppose some people simply subscribe to the idea that it’s all basically the same. :frowning:

“New Age” is a pretty broad category. Even John Tesh’s music has been called (and I still call it) “new age”, even though it’s very melodic. Maybe jazz would be a better category for it.

On the other end of the spectrum, there’s a lot of “new age” music that doesn’t have a discernable, repeating melody. Isn’t that type usually called “ambient” or “environmental” music now?

I like the genre in general, both ends of the spectrum. But I’ll take each one on its own merit, and have no interest in anything directly promoting Hindu gods.

“New Age” is a pretty broad category. Even John Tesh’s music has been called (and I still call it) “new age”, even though it’s very melodic. Maybe jazz would be a better category for it.

On the other end of the spectrum, there’s a lot of “new age” music that doesn’t have a discernable, repeating melody. Isn’t that type usually called “ambient” or “environmental” music now?

I like the genre in general, both ends of the spectrum. But I’ll take each one on its own merit, and have no interest in anything directly promoting Hindu gods.

She has a wonderful talent, comparable to some of the old masters IMHO but she is a little mixed up. I spoke with her on the phone several years and I got the impression that she suffers form “old hippie syndrome”. But for the grace of God I would probably be there too. I can barley remember the early seventies. :wink:

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