The characteristics of some of the major keys may be stated as follows: A major is full of brightness and hope: it inspires to sincerity of feeling. Some of the brightest and happiest of music has been written in this key. Music written in this key should be used in either vocal or instrumental music to inspire the patient with the feelings that this particular key expresses. C major is a very positive key: it is filled with a sense of power and determination, it lends itself to strong, religious impulse. There are many compositions by the great composers which prove the truth of the foregoing statements. People who are inclined to be negative may be greatly helped by music in this key as it inspires and stimulates to action. Its tendency would be to quicken the circulation of the blood. There is much in it that would make for youthfulness and activity, mental as well as physical. E major lends itself in the greatest way to all that is magnificent and grand, it is filled with an abounding joy. Some of the world's most brilliant music has been written in this key. In giving the major keys of A, C, and E we might say that they really sum up in themselves all that is greatest in the major keys. The other major keys give variations and varieties, but do not give anything, in a sense, that is fundamentally different.
The healer, then, who employs music as a remedial agent should thoroughly familiarise himself with all the qualities of every key, and should understand just as much as is possible, not only of music but of the human mind, in order to make a thorough adaptation of music to the needs of the patient. The pioneers in this new departure undoubtedly will find many obstacles in the way. At best, it is not going to be an easy matter because the whole subject may be said to be founded and grounded in laws that have heretofore been understood in only a partial or an imperfect way.
I have said elsewhere that this book is not intended to make known the best ways or methods to be pursued in the healing of the sick by music and colour, but rather to suggest, to point out the possibilities that lie in such use. It will be enough for the author to know it fulfils its mission by inspiring someone to continued effort so that healing through music and colour may take its rightful place as one of the greatest therapeutic agents to be found in life.
Doubtless there are many people who will agree that music has the power to heal maladies of mind, and yet will refuse at the present time to acknowledge that it can have any effect in healing diseases of the body. But mental maladies are the causes of physical disease. If it can heal the mind it will certainly heal the body. For the body, at best, is only a mirror for one's feelings, for one's thoughts. That system of medication which separates mind from body in its healing efforts never has been, and never will be, able to accomplish anything worth mentioning. For thousands of years it has toiled to do this, and for thousands of years it has failed. Man must be taken as a complete entity not as a threefold being of body, mind, and soul, but rather as a soul possessed of mind and body. And any system of healing that treats man as a purely physical being must in the end come to grief.
A few days after I began writing this chapter, I found a paragraph in a London daily paper which I quote word for word just as it appeared. "One of the most interesting articles in this week's British Medical Journal deals with the relation of music to medicine. Experiment has shown that when a lively air was played on a harp a man's tired muscles almost instantly regained their full vigor. The mandolin had the same effect. On the other hand, when a violin-cello was used the man's arm became almost powerless, and his vitality decreased. In nervous and impressionable subjects the Funeral March of Chopin played in a minor key caused diminution of the pulse and irregularity of respiration. The same piece afterward played in the major key quickly restored fulness to the pulse and regularity to the respiration." This is interesting considering the fact that the medical faculty is not given to the making of many new departures. The conservatism of the medical profession is, in my opinion, greater than the religious conservatism of our time. And when we find members of the medical profession looking into this subject, it is surely a sign of the times. If medicine is going to keep abreast of the other professions, it must adopt new means and better methods than the drug system which no longer holds the respect of those who are best qualified to speak both in the medical and scientific world. If the art of healing the sick is to make further progress, it will be found that it will not be through any material means, but through constantly getting farther and farther away from the physical and nearer to the spiritual side of life, and the medical profession can hope to retain its position only by using the most advanced methods of the time, and in the future it will command success only through taking this course.
Music can be made to call out from the soul of man latent powers and possibilities so that both mind and body will be made to respond. All healing which in any way seeks to remove disease of either mind or body must follow along this line, otherwise the attempt at healing will give no beneficial or lasting results. If music "hath charms to soothe the savage breast" surely that which offers peace for the mind must bring with it rest for the body as well. It is a natural instinct which causes the mother to soothe her child with song when it is sleepless or restless. Just think for an instant what the word "lullaby" implies. Yes, the lullaby brings repose to the mind and sweet sleep to the body.
Health and strength are natural conditions, but we have departed from natural ways of living. Natural causes give natural results; but no one may hope to express either health of mind or body through any unnatural departure from the ways or laws of life. Within recent years there has come the cry "back to nature." But the going back to nature should not mean any reversal to the past, but, rather, a new adjustment to nature in the light of the present. Nature has still higher and loftier methods and man requires new adjustments to them. It will be a return to nature, but it will be no backward step, but rather a new and better step taken in the higher pathway of life.
The old ways and means are no longer sufficient to supply the needs of the present time. They must be superseded by new and better ways of doing things. They have served their purpose and are to be left behind, so that we may press forward with confidence to those things which lie before. Men and women must stop filling their physical systems with all kinds of poisonous drugs in order to overcome their physical diseases, and resort to nature's way of cure through the use of rhythm, melody, and harmony. For after all is said, the real force of being does not consist in any or all material things. The ethereal remedy must replace the material. The divine in man must overcome the human. The outer life must become a full expression of the inner life. Only when this comes to pass shall every mental malady and every physical disease be overcome. Man has power within himself to bring order out of chaos, to overcome weakness with strength, to make his mind holy and his body whole; but he can only succeed in doing this as he complies with all the requirements of the inner laws of being. And the perfect expression of all law is summed up in the spirit of love, and its fulfilment is a life that is filled with the melody and harmony of the music that lives within his own soul.