PopMatters on melancholy
Melancholy is not mere sadness. Melancholy is a disposition, a way of viewing the world, not a passing emotion. Martin Heidegger, in his renowned Being and Time writes of the importance of mood as a way of revealing non-propositional truth about the world (that is, truth that cannot be set forth as a logical proposition). The German word Heidegger employs is “Stimmung” one of the meanings of which is “tuning”, as in the tuning of an instrument.
This notion of the ontology of mood intrigues me. The tuning of an instrument does not entirely determine what is played upon it. After all, I can play the Bach Chaconne on the guitar even though it’s written for solo violin. The piece is playable on each instrument despite their differing tunings. And yet, certain tonal patterns, chords, and figures “fit” better on one instrument with its tuning than it does on the other.
Some chords are ready-to-hand, other chords your fingers can't reach.