Saturday, March 19, 2005

Dust in the Wind

I adore this song. It reminds me of Cool Aunt. I spent most of my time as a 12 and 13 year old sleeping over at her place. She was an actress and musician, and I hold her personally responsible for nurturing my love of Shakespeare and Arthurian Legend. We used to rehearse scenes from Hamlet, watch "Braveheart" and "Excalibur," and stay up all night recording music in her studio (yes, she had a studio!). Sometimes we went to church together, or studied the Bible. It was always fun. Many of her songs were spiritual, and she would let me sing back up for her. We used to go for late night walks too - sometimes on foot and sometimes on roller blades - and just talk about life. I haven't seen Cool Aunt in years, and I miss her. But, I digress...

When warming up on guitar, she always used to play "Dust in the Wind."

Years ago my mother saw an interview with Kerry Livgren, the Kansas guitarist who wrote this song. He has since become a born-again Christian and he doesn't sing the song anymore because now he feels that we are more than simply "dust in the wind." I still love the song, and I actually find it quite spiritual (in a humbling way). Has anyone ever taken a look at Ecclesiastes?

"By the sweat of your brow you will eat your food until you return to the ground, since from it you were taken; for dust you are and to dust you will return."

-Genesis 3:19-

"The words of the Teacher, son of David, king in Jerusalem: "Meaningless! Meaningless!" says the Teacher. "Utterly meaningless! Everything is meaningless." What does man gain from all his labor at which he toils under the sun? Generations come and generations go, but the earth remains forever. The sun rises and the sun sets, and hurries back to where it rises. The wind blows to the south and turns to the north; round and round it goes, ever returning on its course. All streams flow into the sea, yet the sea is never full. To the place the streams come from, there they return again. All things are wearisome, more than one can say."

-Ecclesiastes 1:1-8-

"I, the Teacher, was king over Israel in Jerusalem. I devoted myself to study and to explore by wisdom all that is done under heaven. What a heavy burden God has laid on men! I have seen all the things that are done under the sun; all of them are meaningless, a chasing after the wind. What is twisted cannot be straightened; what is lacking cannot be counted. I thought to myself, "Look, I have grown and increased in wisdom more than anyone who has ruled over Jerusalem before me; I have experienced much of wisdom and knowledge." Then I applied myself to the understanding of wisdom, and also of madness and folly, but I learned that this, too, is a chasing after the wind. For with much wisdom comes much sorrow; the more knowledge, the more grief."

-Ecclesiastes 1:12-18-

King Solomon was human, and even he felt this way sometimes.


Tom said...

I have done a little audio work for Kerry and Dave Hope after they became Christians. He warmed up a sound check with "Dust" but didn't sing the words.

I always thought it had a deep spiritual meaning and also thought of Ecclesiates. This body really is just dust and our perspective on life would be better if we took an eternal view of life and accepted life on this earth for what it is; brief.

sojourness said...

Wow, that's interesting. It must be a personal thing with him. You could certainly argue that it isn't contrary to the Bible, but maybe it reminds him of how he felt when he wrote it.

I apologize readers - the code was screwed up - but you should be able to hear the song now :)