Author Topic: The True Meaning of With Or Without You  (Read 147897 times)

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Offline Farisfan (polished stones)

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Re: The True Meaning of With Or Without You
« Reply #30 on: July 07, 2010, 07:41:13 AM »
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Some people say it's about a girl, some say it's about God. I think, maybe in true Bono fashion, it's about both. He's said he often confuses sex and God. I think the essence of the song is about contradiction--about being pulled apart from the inside by two forces that are hard to reconcile. Because how can you be an artist and exercise that God-given gift when you're surrounded by domesticity? Yet will you give up your happiness and family to follow the muse? Because like Bono says, the muse is taciturn and can leave you with nothing. You can apply this to every other essential contradiction of U2: sex vs God, punk vs roots, head vs heart. And the answer to the contradiction, I think, is found in the song when he sings, "and you give yourself away." As human beings we try so hard to hold on to things, refusing to let them go. Our relationships, our inspirations, our undisclosed desires and all of our tortured love. The harder these things pull at us, the harder we try to hold on to ourselves. But you know, for a seed to bloom into a tree, it must first be released into the earth to die. You have to give yourself away. Because he who cherishes his life will lose it, but he who gives it away will find it.

Well said, Yukona. A very complicated song, this one!

Yes, well said Yukona.  I think you hit the nail on the head.  And this is a complicated or multi-faceted song, but U2 seems really good with those contradictions and tensions or at least bringing them out to the light of day.

Thanks Maximus-- yes-- double, triple entendre....

Good thread!!