Have you ever been around someone who sings out of tune? Do you realize they can’t tell they are doing that? It is not deliberate on their part … that is unless they are trying to do something to make us all cringe.
As an amateur musician I have encountered people who are truly tone deaf … some to a worse degree than others. The extreme case I ran into was a flute player who played any and all music without regard to the key signature! Yes, she played everything in the key of C. Fortunately, she played very softly.
There is another definition for tone deaf that relates to the broader contexts of life: it relates to showing insensitivity or lack of perception in matters of public sentiment, opinion, or taste. We are seeing glaring illustrations of this in so many public institutions that it prompted me to highlight it.
The Catholic Church recently invalidated several thousand baptisms because the presiding priest say we instead of I. The church has clearly become tone deaf on the spirit of the law over the letter of the law.
More recently, John Kerry proved he is tone deaf with his comments on the war in the Ukraine. Read that for yourself here.
Perhaps all this points to a greater need for the pursuit of harmony and wellness in the world. Could it be that anyone who pushes an agenda that can’t be harmonized is tone deaf?