The last posting before the holidays, a time when families and friends bridge thousands of miles, and often personal divides and disputes, to be together.
Abraham Maslow knows precisely why we feel this need to be together. Back in 1943 that Maslow created the Hierarchy of Human Needs. According to Maslow, human needs evolve from the physiological essentials to sustain life (breathing, food, water, etc) to self-actualization (creativity, morality, spontaneity) at the very top.
A lot, when you think about it.
Because music falls into the very important “Love/belonging” step on the ladder, where social needs are met. Humans satisfy that need to belong by creating neighborhoods, sports groups, social networks, book clubs, and - more destructively - gangs, and cults.
Maslow’s hierarchy states that once a person has satisfied their basic physiological survival needs and secured a level of safety and security, they reach out to others seeking belonging. And most agree that satisfying the higher needs of self-actualization and growth is impossible without first achieving a sense of belonging.
Music does exactly that.
Music brings us together, and has done so for as long as we’ve been walking this planet.
Stories, lessons, and fables have been put to music and turned into sing-alongs for generations.
Social change has been instigated by song. Wars have been started, and ended, because of music.
People come together to hear and play music in theatres, churches, arenas, living rooms, and farmer’s fields.
We dance together, seldom alone, to music. And even when we dance alone (which, in the name of therapy, we should often do!), we are together with the creator of the music, sharing the experience with the singers, musicians, and even the songwriters. We are sharing the emotions of the song with others who have experienced the same joy or pain.
Music brings us come together as fans… Parrotheads and Deadheads and Phish Phans and KISS Army Members, as Hippies and Goths and Headbangers and Emos.
Thanks to music, you never have to be alone.
Happy holidays. Thanks so much for reading, caring, commenting, and sharing.