The Significance of Music in Human Life

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Artistic expressions are a fundamental human function, in fact, so crucial that humankind cannot live or would experience a diminished quality of life without it. Humankind has a preprogrammed desire to create whatever their minds construe whether that be in the least glorious or grandest forms of imagination. Music, itself a form of artistic expression, has always had an intimate relationship with humanity ever since natural evolution granted humans their higher intellectual power and attendant ability to communicate. Such is the significance of music that modern human society has developed technology to enhance its production and sharing. Music enthusiast may readily concede that it arguably has the most profound effect on people’s lives as an effective channel for creative expression, mood management, and enabler in the socialization process.

            Listening to music inspires creativity. Ritter and Ferguson (2017) have in their research demonstrated a positive association between music and creative thinking. Their studies particularly recommend listening to “happy” music because it enhances performance on divergent thinking and cognitive flexibility that are both necessary for innovative thinking. During the research, it was observed that volunteers who participated in creative exercises while listening to happy music performed better than their counterparts who did in silence.  The “happy” group were more creative and proposed more comprehensive ideas when they were exposed to the same set of tasks that required creative thinking (Ritter and Ferguson, 2017).

            Music is indeed a powerful medium for manipulating one’s mood. Musical expression supersedes the power of conversation. Juslin (2013) observes that music, unlike verbal or written discourse, can evoke multiple reactions from the listener at the physical, physiological, and behavioral levels. Few other stimuli have such proven effects on quite an array of human functions. It is for this reason that the contemporary field of psychology has begun appreciating the potential of music as an essential component of the emerging practice of art therapy. Music’s therapeutic characteristics arise the result of it having the power to stimulate the brain of multiple processors that control physical movement, physiological processes, and human behavior as well. Jusling (2013) indeed argues people who participate actively in creating or listening to music often feel relaxed because music stimulates the production of mood-altering chemicals called endorphins.

            Music is also of significant value as an enabler in the socialization process regardless of the fact that individuals may prefer listening to some in isolation. Lee (2015) observes that people who listen to music while they are in a group setting are likely to develop social bonds with each other faster than they would have if they were to isolate themselves.  The observation is attributable to the fact that music in itself embodies shared human experiences. People who listen to music together are bound to share in the message of a particular tune, excitement of certain melodies, or displeasure of certain sounds. Such individuals may then begin to mirror each other’s musical preferences or cultural expressions (Lee, 2015). A person with the knowledge of its essential nature could use music in the socialization process to understand the identity of others in their social group.

            The value of music in society can never be overestimated due to its proven ability to inspire creativity, enhance mood, and aid the socialization process. It is, therefore, advisable that individuals play their role as members of society to extract optimal benefits of listening to music. The community is bound to benefit whenever its constitution fabric is in peak condition. A more innovative, happy, and sociable people could indeed further human progress towards the attainment of a universal higher quality of life.   


Juslin, P.N., 2013. What does music express? Basic emotions and beyond. Frontiers in psychology, 4, p.596.

Lee, J.H., 2015. Using popular music as a teaching tool: a literature review. Asia-pacific Journal or Multimedia Services Convergent with Art, Humanities, and Sociology, 5(1), pp.99-106.

Ritter, S.M., and Ferguson, S., 2017. Happy creativity: Listening to happy music facilitates divergent thinking. PloS one, 12(9), p. e0182210.

October 05, 2023

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