If there can be such a a thing as a ‘ponder,’ that is. I have mentioned here before a SciFi story series I have been reading – the first book in the series is ’1632,’ by Eric Flint and you can get a legitimately free copy here.
The series is about the effects that might happen if a small American town were to be transplanted whole, by a cosmic accident, back in time to the middle of the 17th Century, in Germany. One of the story arcs concerns the effect on music (and the arts…,) when 17th century musicians and composers are exposed to, firstly, 21st century instruments, the piano in particular, and secondly, the canon of great works written in the golden age of classical music which, in 1632, had hardly begun. (By the way, the author does not fall into the error of making people, of all walks of life,) in the 17th Century any less smart or talented.)
The thought that came to mind was this – born out of reading the books, but not, I hasten to add, a theme in the stories. As a confirmed atheist, I wonder what might have been the inspiration for many of the great composers, absent the overriding presence and influence of the Church(es) in Europe? Whence the great Bach Oratorios, The Mozart Agnus Dei, and the foundations that led to the glories of the greatest of them all, Mr B himself?