Program Details

Immortal Beloved and Love Primordial: Beethoven Salon

with Alex Van Gils
November 17 / 5:00 PM - November 17 / 7:00 PM

An experiential exploration into this great man, his music, human nature, and the nature of society.

[...] art is considered to be one of the highest hallmarks of civilized culture. It communicates basic goodness through symbol, which gives others the power to realize it instantaneously, without language.
-Sakyong Mipham Rinpoche, The Shambhala Principle

Divine One, thou seest my inmost soul; thou knowest that therein dwells the love of mankind and the desire to do good. 
-Ludwig van Beethoven, the Heiligenstadt Testament of 1802

For centuries, the music of Beethoven has been central to Western culture and society. A powerful force, it can stir a person's emotions and engage their conceptual mind; it expresses something held at the core of our collective culture; and it has, through the years, shown its potential to be used as a tremendous catalyst for social change--both for good and for evil.

Beethoven himself was a complicated human being, at once in possession of incredible artistic gifts and an immensely troubled psyche. Indeed, our modern cultural notion of the tortured artist--the troubled genius, untouchable by our mundane understanding and yet able to touch the divine--comes from the person and reception of this seminal composer.

As we contemplate basic human goodness and the vision of an enlightened society, how do we understand and experience this Beethoven, whose cultural imprint is ubiquitous, from the concert hall to samples in hip-hop to cell phone ringtones?

Free admission, donations grateful accepted.

Drinks and hors d'oeuvres will be served!

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