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Slow down as you approach the gate, and have your change ready....
By psychologist, Dr. Bruce L. Thiessen, aka Dr. BLT
Song: The Logical Song
Phantom Tollbooth visitors: You may hear, and download for free, Dr. BLT’s cover of this classic via this link:
The Logical Song:
Supertramp’s The Logical Song, was originally released in 1979, on the album, Breakfast in America. Since then, it has been released on various greatest hits packages, and also appears on the 1999 soundtrack to the movie, Magnolia. In 2005 the song became released as part of a 32-song collection entitled: Retrospectacle: The Supertramp Anthology.
On this pop rock classic, Rick Davies delivers on the vocals with passion and pristine clarity. In addition to Davies’ singular vocal style, the song is most musically memorable for the hypnotic keyboards a captivating saxophone solo, and a sort of rising action that sneaks up on the listener.
When I was young, it seemed
that life was so wonderful,
The song tells a story of
a boy who begins his with a sense of wonder and a playful imagination.
Then something happens.
But then they send me away
to teach me how to be sensible,
Western civilization, with it’s emphasis on logic, and cognitive skills generally associated with the left hemisphere of the brain stepped in, virtually wiping out his sense of wonder and awe over the universe, and the many mysteries it contains. In the education that this boy acquired, critical thinking, which should compliment creativity, crushed it.
There are times when all
the worlds asleep,
Our system of education is not the only avenue in which learning has become laden with logic. Virtually every institution in Western civilization has been poisoned, to some degree, with what I generally refer to as the cyanide of cynicism. All Jesus ever asked for was a faith the size of a mustard size, but in our society, the tiny mustard seeds that once moved mountains have disappeared in the winds of Western civilization.
Now watch what you say or
they’ll be calling you a radical,
Fear of labels, to some extent drives our behavior. Such labels are part and parcel of society’s obsession with categorization, and its intolerance for ambiguity. Liberals are afraid to be branded with the dreaded “liberal” label, and conservatives are afraid to be called “conservative,” and are afraid to admit to acknowledge their core conservative values, for fear of being labeled a “bigot,” a “hater,” a “homophobe” or worse.
At night, when all the worlds
In the end, the boy depicted
in this song, like Western civilization, is lost, without a sense of identity,
without a spiritual sense of purpose and without a soul to offer personal
satisfaction and to serve as a guide in life’s mysterious, often problem-plagued
journey. Logic and the cognitive skills that are generally associated
with the left hemisphere, have taken us, as a society, exceedingly far
in terms of technological and scientific advancement. Myriad medical
discoveries would not have been possible without vigorous scientific studies.
But if society loses its soul in logic, how far have we really advanced?
We are able to extend life considerably, but aside from keeping the body
alive longer, what have we offered the soul? This is the question
that haunts us in The Logical Song. And for giving us this timeless
classic, Supertramp should receive a medal of honor. The song is
a deftly delivered, soulful reminder to us all to keep our priorities straight
and to keep things in perspective. The song reawakens the listener’s
sense of imagination and wonder. Jesus said that we must come to
him as little children. It is not that he asks us to leave our brain,
and our left brain in particular, at the door. It’s just that when
we enter into his presence, he wants us to be wholly present---mentally,
physically, emotionally and spiritually. He wants to transform our
whole being in order to make us whole beings. Without the heart to
guide it, the mind is a ghastly ghost town, and the soul has been reduced
to a spiritual skeleton.