How to Give Meaning to Your Life from the Deaf Composer
He did poorly at school, was suicidal, and was beaten daily by his domineering father.
Despite it all, Ludwig van Beethoven became one of the world's greatest composers - surprisingly writing his best music when he became deaf.
Beethoven believed his music would do more than entertain people - it would enlighten them and give them hope.
Beethoven's belief that his work had great meaning is a cue for us all to add purpose to our lives. These quotes from the master show us how.
“To play without passion is inexcusable!”
To Beethoven, if something was worth doing, then it was worth doing with passion and commitment. The image of his long hair and aggressive piano playing is etched into history. Passion can give meaning because it results in excellence. Don't hold back when it comes to serving others, creating a product or making plans.
“I will seize fate by the throat; it shall certainly never wholly overcome me.”
Beethoven did not believe that our lives are preordained. God gave us the power to choose. Like the composer, we can grab fate by the throat and wrestle it down - turning life into what we make it. Fate is not in charge. You are.
Photo or Painting?
This amazing image of Beethoven appears to be a photograph, but is in fact, a painting by Austrian artist Julius Schmid who was born in 1854, 27 years after Beethoven died. It is believed the eerily realistic painting was done around 1920. Interestingly, photography was in its infancy when Beethoven died.