In the documentary about John Cage, he identifies with Zen’s philosophy. For his own peace of mind, he practised a disinclination towards mind. At one point explaining how a near mental breakdown as a younger man in the 1940s was resolved from creating a piece about chance operations. Following he a mental health epiphany, “the function of art is not to communicate one’s personal ideas or feelings but rather to imitate nature in her manner of operation”. When I young and first came upon his works, I didn’t understand this point. Now, it is more interesting. I loved listening to the Q&A with an audience following a concert. Asked about what he learned from his compositions, he says “Our intention is to affirm this life, not to bring order out of chaos nor to suggest improvements in creation. Simply to wake up to the very life we are living, which is so excellent once one gets one’s mind and desires out of its way and lets it act out of its own accord.”

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