Friday, October 23, 2020

Kye's Music & Lyrics: "Disobedience" by KMFDM (Nihil, 1995)



This is the throne where hatred keeps.
And what is sown is never reaped.
This is the blindness that you need.
This is the vein on which you feed.  

Surrender - It's just one twist
I will surrender - My aching wrist
I can't remember - It's never enough

I will surrender - It's never enough

Oh my darling - One for all and all for one!
Give me reason - The quest for truth!
Give me something – Disobedient, yet responsive!

To believe in - Out of darkness there will be light!

Close your eyes,
Close your eyes.

This is the dignity that you felt
This is the gutter where you have knelt

Surrender - It's just one twist
I will surrender - My aching wrist
I can't remember - It's never enough

I will surrender - It's never enough

Oh my darling - It's a war with no winners!
Give me reason - When violence hits home!
Give me something - Ignorance is your religion!

To believe in - Take this spear and heal thyself!

Close your eyes,
Close your eyes.

Disobedience! - One too many lies!
! - It's the greatest swindle!
! - Everything falls into place!
Disobedience! - Take these words and feel thyself!

This is your wretched, heavin' high.
These are the shamed, the damned, the blamed.
I can smell the slowly spreadin' stain.

Oh, the burden of shame.

Oh my darling,
Give me reason,
Give me something,

To believe in.

Interpretations of this song that I’ve read
are all over the map, and I wouldn’t dare
assume I know what it is about.

But as someone who struggles with intense self-doubt,
shame, and self-loathing while making repeated manic attempts
to punch through and fight back,
this song encapsulates that cyclical struggle for self-actualization
better than anything else I’ve ever read, heard or seen.
It has been the literal soundtrack of many black days for me.

The most painful thing is that those manic attempts
to punch through never last—
and that voice of (seemingly) the higher self
always sinks back under the sludge—
and what is left, in the end, is always what is left at the end of this song—
the burden of shame and an unanswered cry.

I think the reason one cannot beat the
shame spiral in this manner (angry defiance)
is because the entire cycle is part of the bad programming
some of us got sent into the world with as children—
it is a program designed to run and fail, each and every time,
and even the “fight” part is built in.
Every time the fight fails,
it strengthens the underlying shame and adverse messages and beliefs.
The fighting voice seems like the true self, fighting back—
and perhaps it points toward it—but it is a shadow.

As explained here by Julie Hay in this essay
on childhood injunctions, “
McNeel (2010) proposed …
the child makes two decisions – a despairing and a defiant one.
‘The despairing decision represents the conclusion
by the child faced with an injunctive message
that something is wrong with him or her.
The defiant decision is the child’s best attempt at health,
a creative way to resist the injunctive message
and master the circumstances.’ (p.160).
Thus, coping behaviours emanate from the defiant decision,
are doomed to fail because they are extremes
that are impossible to achieve,
and can be observed and hence indicate
the particular injunctive messages

The only way out of the cycle is to recognize
the lie of both the shame and the defiant voice.
Both were built upon the same deleterious falsehoods;
the defiance is the flipside of the shame, but not its antidote.
It is, I now believe, its unintended but powerful reinforcer.