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Reverence: synthesis of high art.

Reverence: synthesis of high art.
December 30, 2009, 10:27:22 PM
1)

You sit and watch, in all your splendor
Oh creator, it's you I now renounce
Everloving God, your love has failed me
I don't need your love...

Jesus, you couldn't save me
You couldn't save them
You couldn't save the world from misery.


-Away From God. Immolation.

2)

Jesu, joy of man's desiring,
Holy wisdom, love most bright;
Drawn by Thee, our souls aspiring
Soar to uncreated light.
Word of God, our flesh that fashioned,
With the fire of life impassioned,
Striving still to truth unknown,
Soaring, dying round Thy throne.


-J.S. Bach

Both are beautiful, but, quite contradictory to come from a single Truth, don't you think?

I've heard anti-theistic ska, trova, hardcore, rock n' roll, and you already know it, they suck. But, for a believer of Truth, why should one consider anti-theistic metal valuable? Because it is reverent.

Arnold Toynbee said that, every man must face the great cosmic question,  whether for one's choice, or by being finally driven by suffering to it. In my opinion I think that both are the same point.  Metal lyricists show a honest inquiring for this cosmic answer, in which a lot of them found no answer in Christianity; metal lyricists denounce Christianity, specifically the Christianity they see in their peers,  to be unsuccessful explaining the horror around them.  But, they don't renounce to reverence and romanticism for humanism. They keep a mystic impulse which allows the mystery of that uncontrollable forces of nature inside human and outside human, to be expressed in art.

This perfectly conforms a single Truth with an Apollonian and a Dionysian face. So are the masks and the names of a single God. Truth in opposition to irreverence, individualism, egotism.

These metal lyrics are often immature, but honest prayers.

Re: Reverence: synthesis of high art.
December 31, 2009, 03:36:07 PM
Hmm, I don't know. Isn't the purpose of prayer to somehow reduce the distance between the praying human being and God?

Example no. 1 reminds me of a child, or a rather silly adult in an outburst of emotion: the answer is that without God, one couldn't even doubt God. Isn't simply being alive and not dead already a reason to be thankful?

"Jesus, you couldn't save me
You couldn't save them
You couldn't save the world from misery."

I don't think Jesus ever said he would or even could save the world from misery. Jesus wasn't a humanist. The oftener I read those lyrics, the sillier they become.
Whatever you honor above all things, that which you so honor will have dominion over you.

Re: Reverence: synthesis of high art.
January 01, 2010, 02:30:27 AM
I quoted this particular song because it comes from a band that makes beautiful music and that has an anti-theistic message; I could cite something less diametric, but this was necessary in order to test my point.

Nietzsche declared the Death of God, but, was he eager to proclame the divinity of human rationalism?... reverence prevented  that. He choose another form of mysticism, allowing the mysteries to be. I can see the same in most metal lyrics, the cosmic question is fundamental, even if they find no answer, they keep questioning, album after album.. that's a religious inquiring to me, often immature, but honest.

In opposition, what I can't stand is individualism and hedonism in metal, I don't need to give you examples about this, and I think that this is not the case of Immolation. If they seek with all their heart and honesty, they will find God, even if they were previously angered or hurt or whatever, even if they find Him in the form of Krishna or Wotan, why not?

Metal is very different from another music that also may be anti-theistic. How do you explain the relatively high amount of traditionalists among metalheads, and not among punk or ska?




I don't think Jesus ever said he would or even could save the world from misery. Jesus wasn't a humanist.


Not a humanist, but remember: "For God sent not his Son into the world to condemn the world; but that the world through him might be saved." John 3:17

In that context, it's somehow understandable to be pissed off while being a compassionate lad.

Re: Reverence: synthesis of high art.
January 01, 2010, 11:18:02 PM
In opposition, what I can't stand is individualism and hedonism in metal, I don't need to give you examples about this, and I think that this is not the case of Immolation. If they seek with all their heart and honesty, they will find God, even if they were previously angered or hurt or whatever, even if they find Him in the form of Krishna or Wotan, why not?

But they don't do that, and the lyrics reek of individualism. I found that doubt is no enemy of religion, because the answers of the world's religions radically resolve it.
But Immolation are not doubting. They are convinced, and they have repeated their message over and over again. They are quite comfortable.

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Metal is very different from another music that also may be anti-theistic. How do you explain the relatively high amount of traditionalists among metalheads, and not among punk or ska?

This is true, there are two conflicting strains in metal: romantic and atheist/anti-religion. I believe metal could dispense with the latter.

Quote
Not a humanist, but remember: "For God sent not his Son into the world to condemn the world; but that the world through him might be saved." John 3:17

In that context, it's somehow understandable to be pissed off while being a compassionate lad.

Stupid lad more likely, because you need the next two sentences for the right context:

18 He that believeth on him is not judged: he that believeth not hath been judged already, because he hath not believed on the name of the only begotten Son of God.
19 And this is the judgment, that the light is come into the world, and men loved the darkness rather than the light; for their works were evil.

NB. I'm not on a crusade here, but simply making the observation that for a religious man it is not so easy to tolerate all this.
Whatever you honor above all things, that which you so honor will have dominion over you.

Re: Reverence: synthesis of high art.
January 02, 2010, 05:48:40 AM

This is true, there are two conflicting strains in metal: romantic and atheist/anti-religion. I believe metal could dispense with the latter.


And that's the point my dear friend: romanticism and anti-theism are not mutually exclusive. Romanticism is neither theistic or anti-theistic: it's reverent. On the other hand, ancient sacred art, is not romantic, but reverent, yes!

Any anti-theistic (or should I say anti-christian?) band is reverent as long it keeps this Faustian, nietzschean spirit, and that's what makes it beautiful.

Secondarily, I believe that Immolation is an example of this, even if their literacy is not as good as their musicianship.


Quote

Stupid lad more likely, because you need the next two sentences for the right context:

18 He that believeth on him is not judged: he that believeth not hath been judged already, because he hath not believed on the name of the only begotten Son of God.
19 And this is the judgment, that the light is come into the world, and men loved the darkness rather than the light; for their works were evil.

I see your point. Jesus is the Lamb of God, who takes away the sin of the world (Jn 1:29), although, according to the Bible, not everyone will be saved. But, there're another versicles that may mislead some people:

"You see, at just the right time, when we were still powerless, Christ died for the ungodly." Romans 5:6
"He is the atoning sacrifice for our sins, and not only for ours but also for the sins of the whole world." John 2:2 
"Who gave himself as a ransom for all men—the testimony given in its proper time" Timothy 2:6

Logically, if God's plan has to be, not everyone will be chosen. (Matthew 22:14).  I agree with you in this.

But let's face it, most modern Christians believe in humanist paradises. I understand metalheads disgust against this. Of course, that's doesn't mean that I wouldn't want a more religiously informed metal community.

Quote
NB. I'm not on a crusade here, but simply making the observation that for a religious man it is not so easy to tolerate all this.

I know, thanks for your observations. I expected more reactions from the antichristian dudes in this thread!

Re: Reverence: synthesis of high art.
January 02, 2010, 02:09:50 PM
Quote
And that's the point my dear friend: romanticism and anti-theism are not mutually exclusive. Romanticism is neither theistic or anti-theistic: it's reverent. On the other hand, ancient sacred art, is not romantic, but reverent, yes!

Any anti-theistic (or should I say anti-christian?) band is reverent as long it keeps this Faustian, nietzschean spirit, and that's what makes it beautiful.

I don't agree with that, simply because atheism and reverence are mutually exclusive. Sure, one can be a pompous atheist: which would be satanic, but not romantic.
Whatever you honor above all things, that which you so honor will have dominion over you.

Re: Reverence: synthesis of high art.
January 03, 2010, 04:12:21 AM
Towards what we could be reverent? Towards a symbol? Or towards what lies behind the symbol, since the understanding of the symbol has been corrupted?

Nietzsche was a reverent and convinced atheist. Someone who understood the oneness and interdependence of life and environment through vitalism, more reverent than the rationalized theism of his close predecessors, and someone who understood the importance of castes. Don't trust me, Ananda Coomaraswamy declared that: "the teaching of Nietzsche is pure nishkama dharma [uninterested/desireless dharma]" for the sole reason that he wanted not pity, but the come of the higher men. Not a philosopher, but a sociologist and a mystic. Coomaraswamy says: "those who have comprehended the decline and fall of Western civilization will recognize in Nietzsche the reawakening of the consiousness of Europe".

Check this essay named "The Cosmopolitan View of Frederick Nietzsche". You can find it in a collection of essays named "The Dance of Siva".

Pretty good for an atheist, don't you think?

Re: Reverence: synthesis of high art.
January 03, 2010, 02:06:17 PM
Alright, I will read the essay; thanks for pointing it out.

I would in turn point out that Coomaraswamy could have formed a different view on certain Western thinkers after his encounter with the writings of Guénon et al.
Whatever you honor above all things, that which you so honor will have dominion over you.


Re: Reverence: synthesis of high art.
January 09, 2010, 12:29:04 PM
Alright, I will read the essay; thanks for pointing it out.

I would in turn point out that Coomaraswamy could have formed a different view on certain Western thinkers after his encounter with the writings of Guénon et al.

Having read the essay, I deem it very likely that Coomaraswamy was not so uncritical of Nietzsche in his later years, especially of the pantheism, the underlying evolutionism, the bashing of religions, the individualism, which Coomaraswamy all kind of ignores or likens to traditional doctrines, illicitly. Nietzsche saw the crisis of the West, but he did not have the right answer; and this he shares with so many others who all saw the crisis (even if they often did not understand its causes), but proposed their own solutions to the problem, continuing in the individualism which caused the abnormality.

Quote
The quintessence of humility, we insist, is the awareness of our nothingness in the face of the Absolute; in the same order of ideas, the
quintessence of charity is our love of the Sovereign Good, which gives to our social compassion its most profound meaning. [F. Schuon, Roots of the Human Condition]
Whatever you honor above all things, that which you so honor will have dominion over you.

Re: Reverence: synthesis of high art.
January 09, 2010, 08:46:38 PM

 Nietzsche saw the crisis of the West, but he did not have the right answer; and this he shares with so many others who all saw the crisis (even if they often did not understand its causes), but proposed their own solutions to the problem, continuing in the individualism which caused the abnormality.

I think otherwise. The most severe critic you can find towards individualism is the concept of "slave revolt" where every individual is important just for being that, an individual; on the other hand the reinvigoration and the recognizing of aristocracy (and aristocratic values) as a way to uphold a greater good for the community. It's not his solution.

Quote
The quintessence of humility, we insist, is the awareness of our nothingness in the face of the Absolute; in the same order of ideas, the
quintessence of charity is our love of the Sovereign Good, which gives to our social compassion its most profound meaning. [F. Schuon, Roots of the Human Condition]


"Not everyone who says to me, 'Lord, Lord,' will enter the kingdom of heaven, but only he who does the will of my Father who is in heaven." Matthew 7:21

Sure, I prefer a believer that does God's will, above all. But, not very far from that, I prefer an atheist that does God's will recognizing the faults of corrupted believers.

Re: Reverence: synthesis of high art.
January 09, 2010, 09:38:55 PM
Tell an atheist to do God's will, and he will laugh in your face--thanks for the reply, though: I will look into the "slave revolt" concept, and eventually return to the subject.

Matthew 7:21 : Note the order, how it is supposed to be: first, you say "Lord, Lord", and then you do His will.

I wonder how, without Humility, there could be any doing God's will? It wouldn't work for me, at least.
Whatever you honor above all things, that which you so honor will have dominion over you.

Re: Reverence: synthesis of high art.
January 10, 2010, 03:45:04 AM
Matthew 7:21 : Note the order, how it is supposed to be: first, you say "Lord, Lord", and then you do His will.


What are you implying?


Re: Reverence: synthesis of high art.
January 10, 2010, 09:18:48 AM
Tell an atheist to do God's will, and he will laugh in your face--thanks for the reply, though: I will look into the "slave revolt" concept, and eventually return to the subject.

I wonder how, without Humility, there could be any doing God's will? It wouldn't work for me, at least.

Actually both believers and atheists usually laugh in my face because they're more interested in a literal interpretation of symbols.

What you understand as Humility, I understand as Reverence.

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Matthew 7:21 : Note the order, how it is supposed to be: first, you say "Lord, Lord", and then you do His will.

Do you mean a sequential order as in the sentence? I can't see a causation order.

Anyway, the point is that you can praise the Lord and talk about humility and doing nothing worthy, or you can create a cultural product that produces reverence in listeners praising a Lord or not.

Re: Reverence: synthesis of high art.
January 10, 2010, 10:53:00 AM
Matthew 7:21 : Note the order, how it is supposed to be: first, you say "Lord, Lord", and then you do His will.

What are you implying?

That one can invoke the name of the Lord, and then do His will; or one can invoke the name of the Lord, and then not do His will. But one cannot not invoke the name of the Lord and then do His will.
Whatever you honor above all things, that which you so honor will have dominion over you.