Brahms - Vier ernste Gesänge 1 - Kathleen Ferrier
Type of Spiritual Experience
In 1890, the 57-year-old Brahms resolved to give up composing. But unable to abide by his decision, and in the years before his death he produced a number of acknowledged masterpieces.
One of these was the Vier ernste Gesänge (Four Serious Songs), Op. 121 (1896).
While completing the Op. 121 songs, Brahms developed cancer - sources differ on whether this was of the liver or pancreas - and he was as a result in great pain.
His last appearance in public was on 3 March 1897, when he saw Hans Richter conduct his Symphony No. 4. There was an ovation after each of the four movements. His condition gradually worsened and he died a month later, on 3 April 1897, aged 63.
Sometimes from hell heaven is created.
A description of the experience
The first of the four serious songs sung by Kathleen Ferrier, the pianist is John Newmark
Denn es gehet dem Menschen wie dem Vieh;
wie dies stirbt, so stirbt er auch;
und haben alle einerlei Odem;
und der Mensch hat nichts mehr denn das Vieh:
denn es ist alles eitel.
Es fährt alles an einem Ort;
es ist alles von Staub gemacht,
und wird wieder zu Staub.
Wer weiß, ob der Geist des Menschen
und der Odem des Viehes unterwärts unter
die Erde fahre?
Darum sahe ich, daß nichts bessers ist,
denn daß der Mensch fröhlich sei in seiner Arbeit,
denn das ist sein Teil.
Denn wer will ihn dahin bringen,
daß er sehe, was nach ihm geschehen wird?
Because the people are like cattle;
as one dies, so all die;
and they have all one breath;
and man is not better than the beasts:
for all is vanity.
All go unto one place;
all are of the dust,
and will return to dust.
Who knows if the spirit of man
and the breath of cattle descend
to ride the earth?
So I saw that there is nothing better,
and that man should rejoice in his work,
for that is his portion.
For who is able to show him,
that he may see his destiny?