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Keywords

Psalmody, Metrical Psalmody, Metered Psalms, Psalms, Singing, Spiritual Disciplines, Classical Disciplines, Reformation, John Calvin, Athanasius, Basil, Augustine, Plato, Aristotle, Psalter

Abstract

The purpose of this essay is to evaluate the way that psalmody - specifically metrical psalmody - serves as a sort of spiritual discipline. In other words, this essay seeks to demonstrate how the singing of psalms can be a tool to aid in spiritual growth. Much of the research for this essay focuses on the theological writings of the Protestant reformer John Calvin, as well as the way in which he incorporated metrical psalmody into his liturgical framework. The research also comprises primary writings from Aristotle, Plato, Saint John Chrysostom, Saint Basil, and Saint Augustine - all of whom influenced Calvin’s own philosophy regarding the use of art, music, and psalmody in worship.

Additional areas examined in this research include the historical musical development of psalmody and the collection and arrangement of metrical psalms into psalters. For reference, specific examples of metrical psalms and psalters have been added. These additional areas and examples help to give a more holistic understanding of the nature of metrical psalmody, and they help to show how it may accurately be considered a spiritual discipline.

DOI

10.15385/jmo.2014.5.2.1

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