The immense scope and originality of Mahler's symphonies were unprecedented in the history of Western music. The composer himself affirmed that composing a symphony was for him to “express the entire content of my life,” and to “create a universe using all the means at my disposal.” In particular, Symphony No. 4 explores the convergence of the symphonic genre with that of the lied, borrowing from his cycle Des Knaben Wunderhorn (The Youth's Magic Horn) in the final movement. The lied he selected, Himmlishe Leben (Heavenly Life), is a deliciously naive depiction of “daily life” in Paradise as imagined by a child. It contributes to make this symphony one of Mahler's best loved works and perhaps the most serene, happy, and luminous within the composer's symphonic output.