[Please note that the views presented by individual contributors
are not necessarily representative of the views of ATCA, which is neutral.
ATCA conducts collective Socratic dialogue on global opportunities and
Re: HQR -- Tagore Einstein: Science, Spirituality & Music
In the context of Holistic Quantum Relativity's Socratic Dialogue on
ATCA and IntentBlog it is useful to note that the Nobel Laureates Prof
Albert Einstein (1921) and Sir Rabindranath Tagore (1913) met at Einstein's
residence in Berlin, Germany, on 14th July 1930, as photographed. The
recorded conversation elegantly demonstrates how the two utilised the
language of music, as a metaphor, to forge common ground between science
TAGORE: I was discussing with Dr Mendel [mutual friend] today the new
mathematical discoveries which tell us that in the realm of infinitesimal
atoms chance has its play; the drama of existence is not absolutely
predestined in character.
EINSTEIN: The facts that make science tend toward this view do not
say good-bye to causality.
TAGORE: Maybe not, yet it appears that the idea of causality is not
in the elements, but that some other force builds up with them an organised
EINSTEIN: One tries to understand in the higher plane how the order
is. The order is there, where the big elements combine and guide existence,
but in the minute elements this order is not perceptible.
TAGORE: Thus duality is in the depths of existence, the contradiction
of free impulse and the directive will which works upon it and evolves
an orderly scheme of things.
EINSTEIN: Modern physics would not say they are contradictory. Clouds
look as one from a distance, but if you see them nearby, they show themselves
as disorderly drops of water.
TAGORE: I find a parallel in human psychology. Our passions and desires
are unruly, but our character subdues these elements into a harmonious
whole. Does something similar to this happen in the physical world?
Are the elements rebellious, dynamic with individual impulse? And is
there a principle in the physical world which dominates them and puts
them into an orderly organisation?
EINSTEIN: Even the elements are not without statistical order; elements
of radium will always maintain their specific order, now and ever onward,
just as they have done all along. There is, then, a statistical order
in the elements.
Albert Einstein and Rabindranath Tagore in Berlin, Germany, 14th
TAGORE: Otherwise, the drama of existence would be too desultory. It
is the constant harmony of chance and determination which makes it eternally
new and living.
EINSTEIN: I believe that whatever we do or live for has its causality;
it is good, however, that we cannot see through to it.
TAGORE: There is in human affairs an element of elasticity also, some
freedom within a small range which is for the expression of our personality.
It is like the musical system in India, which is not so rigidly fixed
as western music. Our composers give a certain definite outline, a system
of melody and rhythmic arrangement, and within a certain limit the player
can improvise upon it. He must be one with the law of that particular
melody, and then he can give spontaneous expression to his musical feeling
within the prescribed regulation. We praise the composer for his genius
in creating a foundation along with a superstructure of melodies, but
we expect from the player his own skill in the creation of variations
of melodic flourish and ornamentation. In creation we follow the central
law of existence, but if we do not cut ourselves adrift from it, we
can have sufficient freedom within the limits of our personality for
the fullest self-expression.
EINSTEIN: That is possible only when there is a strong artistic tradition
in music to guide the people's mind. In Europe, music has come too far
away from popular art and popular feeling and has become something like
a secret art with conventions and traditions of its own.
TAGORE: You have to be absolutely obedient to this too complicated
music. In India, the measure of a singer's freedom is in his own creative
personality. He can sing the composer's song as his own, if he has the
power creatively to assert himself in his interpretation of the general
law of the melody which he is given to interpret.
EINSTEIN: It requires a very high standard of art to realize fully
the great idea in the original music, so that one can make variations
upon it. In our country, the variations are often prescribed.
TAGORE: If in our conduct we can follow the law of goodness, we can
have real liberty of self-expression. The principle of conduct is there,
but the character which makes it true and individual is our own creation.
In our music there is a duality of freedom and prescribed order.
EINSTEIN: Are the words of a song also free? I mean to say, is the
singer at liberty to add his own words to the song which he is singing?
TAGORE: Yes. In Bengal we have a kind of song-kirtan, we call it --
which gives freedom to the singer to introduce parenthetical comments,
phrases not in the original song. This occasions great enthusiasm, since
the audience is constantly thrilled by some beautiful, spontaneous sentiment
added by the singer.
EINSTEIN: Is the metrical form quite severe?
TAGORE: Yes, quite. You cannot exceed the limits of versification;
the singer in all his variations must keep the rhythm and the time,
which is fixed. In European music you have a comparative liberty with
time, but not with melody.
EINSTEIN: Can the Indian music be sung without words? Can one understand
a song without words?
TAGORE: Yes, we have songs with unmeaning words, sounds which just
help to act as carriers of the notes. In North India, music is an independent
art, not the interpretation of words and thoughts, as in Bengal. The
music is very intricate and subtle and is a complete world of melody
EINSTEIN: Is it not polyphonic?
TAGORE: Instruments are used, not for harmony, but for keeping time
and adding to the volume and depth. Has melody suffered in your music
by the imposition of harmony?
EINSTEIN: Sometimes it does suffer very much. Sometimes the harmony
swallows up the melody altogether.
TAGORE: Melody and harmony are like lines and colours in pictures.
A simple linear picture may be completely beautiful; the introduction
of colour may make it vague and insignificant. Yet colour may, by combination
with lines, create great pictures, so long as it does not smother and
destroy their value.
EINSTEIN: It is a beautiful comparison; line is also much older than
colour. It seems that your melody is much richer in structure than ours.
Japanese music also seems to be so.
TAGORE: It is difficult to analyze the effect of eastern and western
music on our minds. I am deeply moved by the western music; I feel that
it is great, that it is vast in its structure and grand in its composition.
Our own music touches me more deeply by its fundamental lyrical appeal.
European music is epic in character; it has a broad background and is
Gothic in its structure.
EINSTEIN: This is a question we Europeans cannot properly answer, we
are so used to our own music. We want to know whether our own music
is a conventional or a fundamental human feeling, whether to feel consonance
and dissonance is natural, or a convention which we accept.
TAGORE: Somehow the piano confounds me. The violin pleases me much
EINSTEIN: It would be interesting to study the effects of European
music on an Indian who had never heard it when he was young.
TAGORE: Once I asked an English musician to analyze for me some classical
music, and explain to me what elements make for the beauty of the piece.
EINSTEIN: The difficulty is that the really good music, whether of
the East or of the West, cannot be analyzed.
TAGORE: Yes, and what deeply affects the hearer is beyond himself.
EINSTEIN: The same uncertainty will always be there about everything
fundamental in our experience, in our reaction to art, whether in Europe
or in Asia. Even the red flower I see before me on your table may not
be the same to you and me.
TAGORE: And yet there is always going on the process of reconciliation
between them, the individual taste conforming to the universal standard.
For those who wish to understand the genesis of this Socratic Dialogue
on ATCA and IntentBlog, which has led to the preliminary efforts towards
Holistic Quantum Relativity (HQR), please visit the following strings
Rumi: 2007 is his 800th Anniversary!
Force, Sub-nuclear Physics & Love of Rumi
Embracing Science, Art and Spirituality!
Holistics: Hegel's Logic, Spirit and Mind
Holistics: Hegel Triangles & Unified Pyramid
Pyramid, Sahasrara, Sri Yantra, Creation
Relativity: Spiritual Planes & Consciousness
Quantum Relativity: Spirituality and Science
Quantum Relativity Project: Glossary
Quantum Relativity Evolution on IntentBlog
This is as presented as an amalgam from a number of sources with attendant
errors and omissions. Please forgive the same and we welcome your submissions,
thoughts, observations and views.
Please read the original article here: Holistic
Quantum Relativity: Integrating Spirituality and Science
We look forward to your further thoughts, observations and views.
For and on behalf of DK Matai, Chairman, Asymmetric Threats Contingency