5 September 2012


Musical performance is associated with powerful beings and is a means of communicating with them although it is not directly addressed to them...Communication may be said to occur not by singing to a powerful being but by singing it into being. Highly focused mental images are created in the minds of the performers by means of their performance...There is a consequent merging of the self with what is sung about; just as in myth powerful beings participate in human speech, so in ritual humans participate in itseke [powerful being] musicality and thereby temporarily achieve some of their transformative power.
--  Ellen Basso on the Kalapalo, quoted by Robert Bellah

(photo: Fabio Colombini)

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