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The Beauty we Miss as we rush through Life………

(Milind,Thanks for reminding me of this through your morning email )

True story …   you can see this on You Tube


. . . Something To Think  About . . .

In   Washington ,   DC , at  a Metro Station, on a cold January morning in 2007, this man with a violin  played six Bach pieces for about 45 minutes.  During that time,  approximately 2,000 people went through the station, most of them on their way  to work.  After about 3 minutes, a middle-aged man noticed that there was  a musician playing.  He slowed his pace and stopped for a few seconds,  and then he hurried on to meet his schedule.    

About 4 minutes  later:   

The violinist received  his first dollar.  A woman threw money in the hat and, without stopping,  continued to walk.    

At 6  minutes:   

  A young man leaned  against the wall to listen to him, then looked at his watch and started to  walk again.    

At 10  minutes:

A 3-year old boy  stopped, but his mother tugged him along hurriedly.  The kid stopped to  look at the violinist again, but the mother pushed hard and the child  continued to walk, turning his head the whole time.  This action was  repeated by several other children, but every parent – without exception –  forced their children to move on quickly.

At 45  minutes:

The   musician  played continuously.  Only 6 people stopped and listened for a short  while.  About 20 gave money but continued to walk at their normal pace.   The man collected a total of $32.

After 1  hour:

He finished playing and  silence took over.  No one noticed and no one applauded.  There was  no recognition   at all.

    No one knew this, but  the violinist was  Joshua  Bell ,  one of the greatest musicians in the world.  He played one of the most  intricate pieces ever written, with a violin worth $3.5 million dollars.   Two days before, Joshua Bell sold – out a theater in   Boston where the seats  averaged $200 each to sit and listen to him play the same  music.

This is a true story.  Joshua Bell, playing incognito  in the D.C. Metro Station, was organized by the Washington Post as part of a  social experiment about perception, taste and people’s priorities.  

This experiment raised  several questions:  

      * In a common-place  environment, at an inappropriate hour, do we perceive beauty?  

       * If so, do we stop to  appreciate it?

       * Do we recognize talent  in an unexpected context?

One possible conclusion  reached from this experiment could be this:  

If we do not have a  moment to stop and listen to one of the best musicians in the world, playing  some of the finest music ever written, with one of the most beautiful  instruments ever made . . .  

How many other things  are we missing as we rush through  life?

Acknowledging Post Blog Response from Anand

Thanks Anand for adding value to this post by responding with lovely links…video link I’ve added on the top and the Poem ‘Leisure’ by W H Davies I’m reproducing below…it’s my all time favourite from school days
Leisure ….by W H Davies

WHAT is this life if, full of care,
We have no time to stand and stare?—

No time to stand beneath the boughs,
And stare as long as sheep and cows:

No time to see, when woods we pass,
Where squirrels hide their nuts in grass:

No time to see, in broad daylight,
Streams full of stars, like skies at night:

No time to turn at Beauty’s glance,
And watch her feet, how they can dance:

No time to wait till her mouth can
Enrich that smile her eyes began?

A poor life this if, full of care,
We have no time to stand and stare.


6 thoughts on “The Beauty we Miss as we rush through Life………”

  1. Gaurav Parikh

    Thanks Anand for providing the lovely links to add value to the blogpost..I’ve acknowledged this in the main post itself

  2. Just another way to interpret the incident…

    Most of us do not have the talent to recognize talent (especially in a field/subjects, we are not very familiar with).
    We are waiting to be told by other’s, what is beautiful and good. We are kind of living in a world of ‘accquired’ taste. Normally, even in the 200$ paying audience too there would be lot of such people. Who are there just because someone else told them, that is the place to be seen at.
    And am also sure if we had someone introdcuing Mr. Joshua on a loud speaker that day, there would be a crowd listening to him at the station. And there come’s the world of advertizing and marketing into life.

    Don’t we see this happening a lot in the field of finance and investment ? Acquired taste for ULIP’s,Endowment plans, Jeevan Surakha blah blah blah…What else can possibly explain Mr. Tendulakar urging us to think about(securing) the future of ‘our’ children ?

  3. Gaurav Parikh

    You are quite right Raja….Appreciation often is cultivated…..but believe me,when you hear a western or Hindustani classical,and it tugs at your mind and heart,you will get lost in it despite not understanding it’s finer nuances…it has happened to me often….that’s Genius at Play and you will know it !….another point is that pause awhile to smell the grass and listen to soulful sounds,even if it’s your own child strumming the guitar…I have two children who both play this instrument…not genuises…but to a dad they sound like one !…and that’s the point !…..make time or seize moments away from your work or daily grind to sense some beauty around you…Cheers !

  4. shahzad jimmy vasaigara

    The story was simply amazing !! and i do agree with you Raja. What u are saying is absolutely true in today’s times of show-shining. People don’t even bother to know and understand themselves, but crave to be a part of the useless herd mentality more n more..

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