What does Ring of Fire mean?

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Johnny Cash: Ring of Fire Meaning

Song Released: 1963

Ring of Fire Lyrics

Love is a burning thing
and it makes a firery ring
bound by wild desire
I fell in to a ring of fire...

I fell in to a burning ring of fire
I went down,down,down
and the flames went higher.
And it burns,burns,burns
the ring of fire


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    May 2nd, 2008 5:29pm report

    This song is about being in love, meeting your soul mate. The hardest relationship one can ever get into and the most uncontrollable like fire. The ring of fire symbolizes marrying that person. The harder you fall the more passion sparks between you. I went down down down and the flames went higher... The ring of fire.


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    Nov 21st, 11:47am report

    Ring of fire is about when you eat really spicy food and in the morning you go to the toilet and your asshole is on fire. That's the real meaning of ring of fire don't fool yourself. Johnny loved Mexican food :)


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    Sep 13th, 2014 9:57pm report

    When you are in a relationship and that's all that you think about, then you will never be able to resist the temptation. He is in this constant cycle of temptation and can't resist it. And that's what happens when you have such a poor focus and idea of what's true and important.


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    Jun 10th, 2014 6:02pm report

    This song was written by Merle Kilgore. He was dating June Carter and she was dating Johnny Cash. Kilgore was at June apartment who was renting a place which was over a barn. About 4 in the morning they hear a pickup coming up the drive. They jumped up put on their clothes Merle got his guitar and when Johnny came in and asked what going on. June was about to tell him she had been dating Merle too, but Merle jumped in and said listen to this song June and I just wrote. The ring was June Merle and Johnny and of course the fire was what was going to happen if Johnny found out. Merle got into the industry by working for Hank Sr. He was a very good songwriter with many hits behind him. One of his biggest was sung by Claude King it was a big crossover hit, "Wolverton Mountain", the song was about Merle's uncle.


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    Jul 7th, 2013 7:35am report

    Well, it might be funny, and it may look like coincidence, but the expression "ring of fire" seems to exist in a book written by Saramago, which I am a huge fan...

    Saramago used the expression "ring of fire" while describing the sex between Jesus and Mary Magdalene, saying that Jesus "felt a ring of fire in his penis"... That might not be the correct interpretation, because it was written by June Carter, a woman, indeed, but, if it was written by a man, sure it was the correct meaning... Just looking at the lyrics...

    By the way, "rings of fire" might be the hell himself...


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    May 18th, 2013 5:03pm report

    Neither June or Johnny wrote this song. The guy that wrote Puff the Magic Dragon wrote Ring of Fire.


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    Feb 24th, 2013 2:35pm report

    It was about diarrhea. The ring refers to his anal cavity and fire to the infernal pain associated with diarrhea.

    Went down down down and the flames went higher and it burns burns burns the ring of fire. As he sat on that toilet letting it out down down down into the toilet, the pain ( flames-metaphor here) went higher and it burns burns burns the ring of fire (his you know what burns).


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    Aug 9th, 2012 8:05pm report

    You people are amazingly creative ;)
    I had a laugh!

    Possibly he was using a condom and it set on fire...
    Then he left a ring shaped marked down there..
    That's why june said it was the ring of fire...
    He was shouting..." my cock in on fire"...
    While june said son of a bitch, you just left me a eternal ring of fire mark...
    If you look for it you can still see it today...

    Madam Tussauds Museum perhaps.. ;)


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    Jul 6th, 2012 7:09pm report

    This song is about him having sexual intercourse with a redheaded woman and how he is falling in love with her and her vast red hair on her head and down "there"... "i went down down down and the flames got higher" definitely talking about her red pubic hair.


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    Jun 16th, 2012 6:28pm report

    Your interpretation is solely based on how you determine the meaning of the song. Think of the song however you want and see how you think of the meaning behind the song. Everyone has an interpretation. What's Yours?


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    Apr 2nd, 2012 4:27pm report

    Really it doesn't matter who wrote it or why they wrote, but what it means to the listener. Sure it had a specific meaning to Cash and Carter, which was important to them, but it strikes a different chord with each and every listener and their interpretation should not be diminished in anyway. That’s the beauty of music. As I said yeah the author/writer of the song may have a message they are trying to communicate, but that shouldn't stop others from relating to the song in their own way with their own meaning.


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    Aug 17th, 2011 8:50pm report

    the awesome thing about music is it can have may meanings depending on how the listener wants to interpret it from the artist. Many people relate music to there oun life experience. So it all depends on the person listining, and there current situatiin in there oun lives .


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    Jul 4th, 2011 7:58pm report

    all your interpretations are sad. Most of you dont realize that june wrote this song not johnny, and she wrote it for him, and her struggle that she went through being in love with him while he was going through his drug addiction


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    Jul 4th, 2011 7:17am report

    the song is about a bad sexuale experience were john reached for some sex lube and grabbed the "bengay" cream instead. put some on june and as the song goes he fell into the ring of fire. rolling stone has an article about the experience as told by johnny cash him self. it's not about love but how it would feel to put icee hot on your genitals. sorry to ruine every ones magical love storey but this is what really happened.


    Martin Forget
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    Jun 10th, 2011 6:42am report

    thats way simple in fact... you all just try to see a version with faeries and unicorns!! it's all about rough sex do i have to explain what is the ring of fire at that point!! i went down down down and the flames went higher... down where down what!!


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    May 28th, 2011 5:08am report

    june actually wrote it for j.r., and it symbolizes the burning ring of her love for johnny while he was married and she was also married

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