Hello planet earth, Tom here to have a brief discussion about the meaning of our latest song ‘Broken Cross’.
First of all, if you are reading this then I imagine you have listened to Broken Cross. Whether you loved it, hated it (Lets face it, unlikely), or were offended by it, thank you. Your mere curiosity is surely a sign of your love of music. Without that love and people like you, our band could not survive. So yeah, thanks.
In amongst all countless wonderful and heartwarming messages, there have been mutterings of discontent. Some religious folk have thrown caution to the wind and thrown us on the religion naughty step along with Behemoth, Marduk and Mayhem. To that I say “Woah there!” (that’s English for ‘stop a horse’). I’m a bit shit with words but I’m going to try and find a succinct way of expressing exactly what ‘Broken Cross’ is all about, because despite what some may think, there’s a bit more to it than ‘religion is rubbish’.
In fact, you know what? That’s not it at all! No! To say ‘Religion is rubbish’ or ‘God is bad’ would be rather reductive, wouldn’t it? Lets face it, religion is an unimaginably multifaceted beast, there’s plenty of good guys and bad guys, just as there is in everything from government to the English Premier League.
It’s only some of those facets that are the target of our vitriol on Broken Cross. I suppose they could all come under the umbrella of ‘Fundamentalism’. So, if you were offended by the song, please ask yourself “Am I a fundamentalist?”. I can be pretty sure that there are ZERO religious fundamentalists that listen to Architects, if there are, then fair enough, this song is about you. Be offended, I promise you won’t be as offended by my beliefs, as I am of yours.
Let me be clear (because I’m treading on egg shells/landmines here). When I talk of fundamentalists, I am not talking of one religion in particular. I’m sure all religions have their extreme rights and extreme lefts. Simply put, I am talking about anyone who thinks it is fair to discriminate, condemn (that’s the same thing, innit?) or worse, attack and even kill people, for who they are - all in the name of religion.
In Palestine, innocent people are forced from their homes - in the name of religion
In Uganda they are still trying to pass a bill to ‘punish’ homosexuality with the fucking DEATH PENALTY - in the name of religion. I’ve done a quick check, I can’t verify the accuracy of the figure but there are something like 83 countries where homosexuality is illegal. We can surely assume that a good percentage of those laws were made on religious grounds. Maybe I’m wrong, I’m sure you’ll let me know if I am.
What about the girls in the middle east who are forced to marry the men who raped them, to ‘restore their honour’ and escape the ‘shame of adultery’? What about Malala Yousafzai, the Pakistani girl who was shot, aged 14, because she campaigned for girl’s rights to an education? These are not ideals created by a secular society. Before you all bite my head off, I am not saying that all religions promote this lunacy. That’s the very point I am trying to make.
How about all the religious groups that are condemned to hell by…each other! I’ve read stories of Christians being rounded up and massacred in Syria for example. Religion vs religion is probably the longest standing, bloodiest and most unwinnable conflict going.
I’m sure there is no need for me bleat on about ‘The Westboro Baptist Church’, however they are a great case in point for this discussion. Haven’t we all agreed, whether left, right, atheist or theist, that they are a bunch of repugnant dimwits? It’s these bigoted religious views that we’re talking about. So lets not get our knickers in a twist here, because I reckon we’re probably on the same page.
I hear all the time that people have a personal relationship with god. One person’s god is different from another person’s god - I assume? It surely must be. So perhaps Broken Cross isn’t about your god. It’s about the god that created us, only to condemn us. Because, for me, he doesn’t love us. I might be an atheist (flirting with agnosticism) but I’d like to believe that if there is a god, he doesn’t send us into eternal hellfire for loving the ‘wrong’ person. Or for believing in the wrong god. Or for having a foreskin…
For millions (probably billions) I’ve no doubt that religion serves as a peaceful influence in their lives and that’s fantastic! But the moment others are outcast for their race, gender, sexuality and yes, even religion - well that just gets my goat. And I have no apologies for being upset about that.
I can’t possibly cover everything in a single blog. I’ll think of a million things I should have said when I wake up tomorrow. Religion is bloody hot potato and sometimes I think talking about something that millions/billions of people don’t devote their lives to might be more straightforward. But that’d be boring, wouldn’t it? They say art is supposed to be provocative, so I guess this is what it’s all about. Although I see us more as blaggers than artists.
That’s what we are, you see - blaggers. How did we even get here?! One day we’re in school, smoking weed, drinking white cider, minding our own business, the next minute all these people are listening to what we’re saying and we’re just blurting out the first thing that pops into our heads (no, not literally). It’s all very strange, bewildering, exhilarating and most of all - scary. I’d never write a song with the sole aim being to offend or upset people. I’m one of those unbearable self-righteous idealists that’d just like everyone to be friends. I know, I know. Fat chance.
So! Let theists and atheists unite together against this stone age bullshit! We’re all stuck on this rock together so lets stop searching for ways in which we are different are start looking at all the ways in which we’re alike.
We don’t hate religion, we don’t hate your god (unless he’s really mean - See above) and we don’t hate you.
Lots of Love,
With the blessing and approval of his band chums - Sam, Dan and Edgar Alan Onkar Poe.Posted 8 months ago with 1,326 notes