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Old 12-01-2010, 17:19
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Faster - partially based on a gnostic poem?

Wasn't quite sure where to put this but this was a funny little discovery I made today. It's pretty well documented that Richey read some fairly obscure religious texts, and relgious themes were pretty prevailant in his writing, so I wouldn't be suprised if he'd read 'The Thunder, Perfect Mind'.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Thunder,_Perfect_Mind


'...I am shame and boldness.
I am shameless; I am ashamed.
I am strength and I am fear.
I am war and peace.'

pretty similar?

sorry if someone has brought this one up before. And yes I did jump the gun and add that bit at the bottom of the wikipedia page...
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Old 12-01-2010, 17:43
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Interesting. I'm somewhat familar with the poem and never put the two together. Very possible. That song's a tough one to figure out; even Nicky has said he's really not sure what it's about. I always thought "1984" was an influence on the song as well. I'm going to go and re-read the poem.
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Old 12-01-2010, 17:48
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Maybe, I'm not sure there's that much similarity, I mean not beyond claiming to be two opposite states at once.

Quote:
In addition, the Welsh rock band Manic Street Preachers seem to have adapted the poem for their 1994 single Faster.
I think this is a bit strong on wikipedia, given it's just speculation...it's hardly adapted, maybe some of it is loosely based on a similar theme ie paradoxical statements (which wiki says already that poem based on the greeks), but it's hardly adapted, which would imply the lines of the poem were basically used, and as far as I'm aware they are different enough and there is no evidence in particular of richey referencing it.

Last edited by Takk; 12-01-2010 at 18:06.
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Old 12-01-2010, 17:59
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Can't see any similarities.
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Old 12-01-2010, 18:08
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From an old article:

Nicky: Frankly, a lot of it is all Richey again, and I was always completely confused by it. But when he wrote it he told me it was about self-abuse. The opening line is: 'I am an architect/They call me a butcher' - and of course, he's been carving into his arm and all that...
I think it's the most confusing song on the album. I added some stuff about the regurgitation of 20th Century culture, and the way that everything's speeded up to such an extent that nobody knows if they've got any meaning any more.
It's probably the first time that we've written a song and not completely understood what we've written.

Richey: Strength through weakness. All morality sown in the soil of the ruling caste. Self-abuse is anti-social, aggression still natural. Society speeding up - finds worth is failure.
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Old 12-01-2010, 19:44
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Interesting thematic link, though I've no idea if Richey was really thinking of Gnosticism when writing his lines (whichever 25% they were).

Gnostic religions, like Catharism, were persecuted by Christians for centuries despite being based on the same texts, because leaders of Christianity didn't appreciate competition when interpreting the gospels.

I've always wondered why it's not championed more as an argument against atheism, as Gnostics saw the stories in the Bible as being meant as metaphor rather than as fact, history just forgot that. Had it survived it could be speculated that the theory of evolution and advancements in science could have co-existed quite peacefully alongside it - we'd all have lived in perfect harmony and bliss!

Perhaps Faster is about the loss of clarity and how perfection can't exist in an imperfect world.
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Old 12-01-2010, 19:45
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Can't see it myself either, but if it was Nicky who wrote the lyrics it would be highly likely!
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Old 12-01-2010, 21:41
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Old 15-01-2010, 03:54
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Quote:
Originally Posted by River Boy View Post
Interesting thematic link, though I've no idea if Richey was really thinking of Gnosticism when writing his lines (whichever 25% they were).

Gnostic religions, like Catharism, were persecuted by Christians for centuries despite being based on the same texts, because leaders of Christianity didn't appreciate competition when interpreting the gospels.

I've always wondered why it's not championed more as an argument against atheism, as Gnostics saw the stories in the Bible as being meant as metaphor rather than as fact, history just forgot that. Had it survived it could be speculated that the theory of evolution and advancements in science could have co-existed quite peacefully alongside it - we'd all have lived in perfect harmony and bliss!

Perhaps Faster is about the loss of clarity and how perfection can't exist in an imperfect world.
Surely it would be proving the point of Atheism though, if you champion the Gnostics then they become much like Aessop's fables they become stories with moral meanings which In my view most of the New Testement is. It would pretty much damage Christianity if it was ever taken on. For similar diagnosis look at the Muslim faith and the part Jesus plays in that, it's remarkable that so many religions come down to mostly the same stories.

But back on to Faster, I always thought it was a simple use of rhetorical language device, nothing more, the idea may of been taken but as said above it's hardly a copy and it's not like it's the first time it's been used.
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Old 15-01-2010, 10:22
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Matt_o_Mac View Post
Surely it would be proving the point of Atheism though, if you champion the Gnostics then they become much like Aessop's fables they become stories with moral meanings which In my view most of the New Testement is. It would pretty much damage Christianity if it was ever taken on. For similar diagnosis look at the Muslim faith and the part Jesus plays in that, it's remarkable that so many religions come down to mostly the same stories.

But back on to Faster, I always thought it was a simple use of rhetorical language device, nothing more, the idea may of been taken but as said above it's hardly a copy and it's not like it's the first time it's been used.
It would damage strictly-followed doctrines like Catholicism for sure as it would be open to free interpretation, but in terms of using things like science to disprove religion it would be much harder to do, as Gnostics would use the stories for moral guidance rather than as some kind of historical fact.

It does often seem that the religions we've argued over so vehemently are in fact the same thing.
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