Classical Beauty Will Move Mankind To Save Civilization
29 January 2013
by Nancy Spannaus
—" It is through beauty that one proceeds to freedom ," wrote the German poet of freedom Friedrich Schiller, as he sought to provide the inspiration the world needed to escape the barbarism that followed the failed French Revolution of 1789. That same message is today at the heart of the work of the international Schiller Institute, an association founded by Helga Zepp-LaRouche, as the Institute seeks to bring the world back from the brink of a New Dark Age that threatens human extinction, through thermonuclear war or devastating societal and economic collapse.
With this intention, the Institute sponsored a conference at Riverside Church in New York City on Jan. 26, on the theme "A New Paradigm to Save Mankind." The all-day meeting brought together approximately 300 people to hear presentations on the current strategic danger, and the Constitutional and artistic principles needed to defeat it. Several musical presentations, including a performance of Johann Sebastian Bach’s "Magnificat," served as inspiring examples of the power of Classical art, including to many in the audience who had never been exposed to Classical music before.
This Schiller conference continues a process begun in Germany in November 2012, where the Institute brought together a broad array of international spokesmen, to put forward proposals for economic development that would provide the basis for a lasting peace. That conference initiated an ongoing process of international dialogue on the axioms underlying the current world catastrophe, and the necessary shift in the concept of man required to create the modern equivalent of the Italian Renaissance. The Institute has set up a multilingual website devoted to continuing this dialogue (newparadigm.schillerinstitute.com), and plans frequent follow-up conferences on both sides of the Atlantic.
EIR begins its coverage of the Jan. 26 event with the keynote address by Helga Zepp-LaRouche, and the resolution passed by conference participants. Readers are encouraged to visit the
Schiller Institute website
(newparadigm.schillerinstitute.com.) which will post the video presentations, including the music. In future issues, we will publish the other major contributions delivered at the event.
In Defense of the Constitution
The first panel featured a series of speakers on the topic "In Defense of the United States Constitution and International Law." Following Zepp-LaRouche’s keynote, Bruce Fein, former Associate Deputy Attorney General in the Reagan Administration and a noted constitutional lawyer, addressed the current growing danger of a thermonuclear confrontation between the U.S. and Russia, from both a philosophical and historical perspective, under the title "What Is Mankind as a Species?" a video message from Congressman Walter Jones (R-N.C.) was then played (see below).
Prof. Norton Mezvinsky, president of the International Council for Middle East Studies in Washington, D.C. and professor emeritus at Central Connecticut State University, next spoke on "The Destructive Effects of Religious Extremisms." Lyndon LaRouche PAC Basement Team member Michael Kirsch, the principal author of LaRouchePAC’s [NAWAPA XXI report and author of the recently published pamphlet "How Andrew Jackson Destroyed the United States," concluded the panel with a discussion of the principles by which First Treasury Secretary Alexander Hamilton created the U.S. credit system, and called on the participants to restore such a system today.
Defeating a New Dark Age
The second panel began with a performance of the "Magnificat," by the LaRouche chorus and orchestra. It was followed by a variegated set of presentations on American history and Classical culture.
Prof. Cliff Kiracofe, who teaches history at the Virginia Military Institute and political science at Washington and Lee University, discussed "The Principles of John Quincy Adams," who most succinctly defined the foreign policy of the republican American System. Filmmaker Sean Stone, director of Greystone Park (2012), then addressed the British destruction of American culture, which is now dominated by the ideology of empire.
Dr. Mark Shelley, an physician from Port Allegany, Pa., elaborated on how that British evil is destroying medicine in the United States, creating a crisis in the U.S. health-care system through "commoditization" which goes against the patient’s welfare.
The Classical cultural counterpoint to the political presentations was provided by two individuals who touched the audience deeply with music. Elvira Green, a mezzosoprano, formerly with the New York Metropolitan Opera, and now an artist-in-residence at North Carolina Central University, described her path to learning that "Classical Music Is the World’s Music." She concluded with the Negro spiritual, "I am a Pilgrim of Sorrow."
Lynn Yen, executive director of the Foundation for the Revival of Classical Culture in New York City, then introduced Fang Tao Jiang, a Chinese soprano of international acclaim, who told her personal story of finding Classical music as a source of beauty and truth, in the wake of her mother’s untimely death. Beauty is the truth, and the truth will endure, she said. As Schiller said, it is through beauty that man proceeds to freedom.
At the request of Helga Zepp-LaRouche, she concluded by singing an aria by Puccini.
The final panel of the day was devoted explicitly to the role of Classical music in uplifting mankind. It began with a performance of Beethoven’s Sonata for cello and piano, Op. 102 #1. Then came remarks from Lynn Yen, and the Schiller Institute’s John Sigerson, who discussed the science of the Verdi tuning. He illustrated his argument by having the chorus perform the chorus "Va Pensiero" from Verdi’s opera "Nabucco," at the A432 Verdi tuning, and then at the popular A440 tuning.
The balance of the panel was devoted to open discussion of the day’s deliberations.