But the Beat is sick…
There was a brief time in my life when I felt genuinely depressed. I couldn’t figure out why. Life was going great. I had just quit my “good government job,” which I kind of despised, and started my own business. I was making more money than I ever had, and I had the freedom that I always wanted. I should have been feeling ecstatic, but I wasn’t. So I decided to seek out whatever was causing my depression, and eliminate it.
I found a few things that I think may have been contributing to my depression. Aside from my caffeine dependency and social media addiction, I realized that the music I was listening to was both negative and foul. See, the problem is, I love music, any kind of music. And I especially love a good beat. Over a slamming beat, it didn’t matter to me what the hook was saying. But actually, it does.
It’s a scientific fact that music affects our brains. It can affect our mood, and over time, it can affect our perceptions. For instance, in most popular hip hop songs, women are regarded as bitches and hoes. We are valued, not for our intellect or accomplishments, but instead for flat stomachs and phat asses. In the black community, some men’s respect for women have plummeted along with a large majority of women’s self-image. Which is evident in the way women are treated in relationships and the level of disrespect we sometimes put up with. Not to mention the rise of butt implants and the very tiny outfits worn in the club.
Song lyrics and music videos have definitely changed our perception of life over the years. It’s also made us more materialistic because, other than women, lyrics also focus on expensive cars, clothes, liquor, and making it rain in the strip club.
What’s funny, is how the artists on these songs thank God during their award show acceptance speeches. Why? Do you think God condoned the type of music they made? Do you think they care what God thinks? Or do you think our culture has forced them into conforming?
Well, I did a little research in the bible regarding music, because it’s pretty much the only way to know what God thinks. And it was very clear, God loves music. Here are a few verses that confirm that:
“Sing to him, sing praises unto him, tell of all his wondrous works” Psalm 105:2
“I will sing to the LORD as long as I live; I will sing praise to my God while I have being.” Psalm 104:33
“Praise the Lord, for the LORD is good; sing to his name, for it is pleasant!” Psalm 135:3
It’s clear God loves music, but it’s also pretty clear that he wants our music to focus on him. He wants us to direct our attention to good things as made clear in Philippians 4:8 when he said,
“Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is commendable, if there is any excellence, if there is anything worthy of praise, think about these things.”
He also said in Corinthians 15:33,
“Do not be deceived: ‘Bad company ruins good morals.'”
Have you ever noticed, when you’re in your car, listening to one of your favorite hip hop songs, with hardcore lyrics, that you actually start to drive more aggressively? I know have. But when I’m listening to a slow song, I tend to cruise.
My husband listened only to gospel music for about a month straight, and said that he was in a much better mood. He reported, feeling an overall sense of hopefulness. As soon as he went back to listening to hardcore lyrics, his mood went back to its regularly scheduled programming.
As much as I know all this to be fact, I am still a sucker for a slamming beat. But I do at least try to listen to songs without misogynistic and materialistic lyrics. I think they call it feel good music ; and it does actually make you feel good. And isn’t that what music is for?
Until next time, stay prayed up.