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Delight is Essential to Resilience, Too – A Rendition of Beethoven’s Fifth Symphony Like You’ve Never Seen or Heard Before.

Delight is Essential to Resilience, Too – A Rendition of Beethoven’s Fifth Symphony Like You’ve Never Seen or Heard Before.

The CD of the San Francisco Symphony playing Beethoven’s Fifth Symphony lives in the CD player of my car. In the “old days” of long, traffic-snarled commutes, that was my go-to for shifting my mood while inching through traffic.

Now a friend sent me the link to the most delightful presentation of the opening movement that you can imagine. A video of a cartoon rendition, two teeny-tiny bicyclists riding up and down the tracks of the music; hard to describe, a total joy to experience. Try it; you’ll enjoy it.

All of that a reminder that joy and delight play an essential role in our resilience.  Beethoven was already severely deaf by the time he completed his fifth symphony; completely deaf by the time he completed his 9th.  Sorrow and suffering for one of the greatest composers of all time, for sure, and yet, even in the midst of that sorrow and suffering, he could give to the world his immortal “Ode to Joy.”

Shared joy-delight-laughter has always been an essential component of people surviving the hardest of times. According to Dacher Keltner, founder of the Greater Good Science Center at University of California-Berkeley, laughter provides a “little trap door that allows you to escape from toxic stress.”

And Steven Sultanoff, professor of psychology at Pepperdine University, says “In the human condition, you cannot experience distress and emotional uplift at the same time.  When you’re experiencing mirth, you’re not experiencing depression, anxiety, or anger. If you increase your humor quotient, it will change your life.”

Please watch the Beethoven video; it could change your life, at least for a moment.

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