Friday, August 15, 2014

More on Cohen's Anthem
"That is the background of the whole record, ... if you have to come up with a philosophical ground, that is "Ring the bells that still can ring."  It's no excuse... for an abdication of your own personal responsibilities towards yourself.... "Ring the bells that still can ring.": they're few and far between but you can find them. "Forget your perfect offering", that is the hang-up, that you're gonna work this thing out. Because we confuse this idea and we've forgotten the central myth of our culture which is the expulsion from the garden of Eden. This situation does not admit of solution or perfection. This is not the place where you make things perfect.... The thing is imperfect. And worse, there is a crack in everything that you can put together, physical objects, mental objects, constructions of any kind. But that's where the light gets in, and that's where the resurrection is ..., that's where the repentance is. It is with the confrontation, with the brokenness of things."
~~ Leonard Cohen from Diamonds in the Line

I seem to be in a Cohen-state-of-mind lately. He is one amazing musical talent. His songs are poetry, philosophy and calls to action. The above quote is his explanation for the song Anthem, which I quoted in the past two entries.

There is no perfection in the world ~ we need to work with what we have, keep moving forward and find our deepest, truest selves in it all. Part of his explanation refers to the "central myth of our culture which is the expulsion from the garden of Eden" ~ which is true in terms of Western Abrahamic-based culture. Is it true in other cultures? Maybe. Maybe not. But I come from that particular culture and I understand his reference.

Do you agree with Cohen's philosophy? Do you believe that there is no perfection? that we are responsible for our lives in spite of that fact? For what do we need to repent? How does that repentance affect our lives?

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