What does What I've Done mean?

Linkin Park: What I've Done Meaning

Album cover for What I've Done album cover

Song Released: 2007

What I've Done Lyrics

In this farewell,
There’s no blood,
There’s no alibi.
‘Cause I’ve drawn regret,
From the truth,
Of a thousand lies.

So let mercy come,
And wash away…

What I’ve Done.
I’ll face myself,
To cross out what I’ve become.


    #1 top rated interpretation:
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    Apr 4th 2007 !⃝

    All of you are wrong. This song is about humanity's neglect of the society and environment that we're responsible for. We are all so caught up in power, money, and pride, that we forget about all the atrocities that occur every day. This song calls for everyone to change their ways and make things right in the world. Our world, socially and environmentally, is falling apart because of one thing - us.


    #2 top rated interpretation:
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    Nov 28th 2009 !⃝

    I agree with Sean in a way, but
    1. You don't have to be so utterly rude and
    2. the reason people get on this site is to find what other people think, right?
    So, sure, we are meant to interpret them how we like, but some people want to know how others interpret them. I think it's annoying how you can try to find what people think, and half of the time you find cussing people out and insulting people for saying what they think. If you don't like their idea, post yours, or don't, but don't call people morons and all of that.


    #3 top rated interpretation:
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    Feb 25th 2011 !⃝

    My interpretation of this song differs from other's in that I don't attribute it to a specific matter, I think it's meaning can apply to many situations depending on the circumstances. I don't really think it references any actual thing we've done wrong, I think it's based on our wrong doings in general.
    I think it speaks about someone who is not proud of how they have acted. He or she has noticed their own mistakes and regret them. However, that person is ready to change, forgive themselves, and let go of everything they once were.
    In this farewell
    there's no blood
    there's no alibi
    'cause I've drawn regret
    from the truth of a thousand lies

    So let mercy come
    and wash away what I've done

    The chorus follows the same line of thought, leave behind who you once were and what you did,cross it out, erase it,let it go.

    I'll face myself
    to cross out what I've become
    Erase myself
    And let go of what I've done

    The second verse alludes your desire for others to give you another chance, change their opinion of you: "Put to rest what you thought of me". It also speaks of how insecure and uncertain you feel while changing your ways: "While I clean this slate with the hands of uncertainty".

    The third verse bears somewhat more possitiveness. You feel ready to move on, start again no matter whatever pain may come; you feel that your dark past is already gone forever, but most important, you find it in you to forgive yourself.

    As I said earlier, there's no need to focus the meaning of this song to a specific matter, since it can be applied to many things depending on the circumstances. In my case, I relate it to the times when I look back and realise my mistakes, then I promise myself to change and also forgive myself. You really can apply it to many of those situations, no need to restrict it to merely one meaning.
    Remember, that's just MY interpretation.

  4. anonymous
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    Aug 31st 2022 !⃝

    The song writer is seeking divine peace and mercy. Each chorus is led by a precursor line: 'So let mercy come and wash away'. This strikes similarities with entries from Psalms that ask for divine forgiveness. For example: Have mercy on me, O God, because of your unfailing love. Because of your great compassion, blot out the stain of my sins. Wash me clean from my guilt. Purify me from my sin.
    Psalms 51:1‭-‬2 NLT

    Therefore, the songwriter is seeking for divine mercy.

  5. anonymous
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    Aug 30th 2022 !⃝


  6. anonymous
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    Jun 20th 2022 !⃝

    This is the way I see it.

    A scenario where this guy cheated on his GF / Wife - Wife forgives him, gets back together, get married, have a baby with her... but never forgives himself.

    Video starts with the scorpion. In some cultures, the scorpion symbol is used to represent lust and sex.

    "In this farewell, there is no blood, there is no alibi" - The man going into hiding? Or by suicide by hanging - no blood, no one seeing him.

    Having a baby which would then wash away all the pain he created - referring to him / her as "mercy"; compassion or forgiveness shown towards someone whom it is within one's power to punish or harm. - "and wash away, what i've done!"

    "I face myself, to cross out what i've become" - "Once a cheater always a cheater?"

    "Erase my self, and let go of what i've done" - only solution to forgive is to commit suicide?

    2:22 seconds: "For what I've done, I start again, and whatever pain may come, today this ends, I'm forgiving what I've done".

    Starting again, by having a baby, his own blood, representing a new him. The pain he feels for not forgiving himself is gone, and also the pain he gave to others. Possibly also committing suicide to for the pain to end? You can see a baby being born during this part of the video.

    Also, at the end, two atomic bombs are shown when the word "done" is sung... symbolizing the mental devastation one creates by cheating.

    This is how I see it from my personal point of view.

  7. anonymous
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    Oct 29th 2020 !⃝

    This song is about suicide.
    It was probably too hard for him to express that to all humanity and also somebody might say he was istigating suicide... It was better for everybody if the videoclip was different...
    And that's what they did.
    I think the lyrics is clear. By the way we should try to learn from the videoclip and make things better instead of destructing the planet we love.
    We are actually attempting suicide.
    But there's no restart. He was wrong

  8. anonymous
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    Mar 4th 2020 !⃝

    Isn't it in whatever way it speaks to each person individually

  9. anonymous
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    Jun 5th 2018 !⃝

    It is about him struggling with suicide. He commit suicide a few years after releasing this song. The first line says "in this farewell there's no blood" - hanged himself
    " There's no alibi" - he did it himself

    In the chorus he says" erase myself" - aka kill himself.
    "Cross out what I've become" same as above

  10. anonymous
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    Feb 5th 2018 !⃝

    I think this song is about realising what we as humanity have come to and it is time that we as individuals cross out our negativity,mistakes and all our faults to right what we have done wrong in the society

  11. anonymous
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    Sep 22nd 2013 !⃝

    I think it's pretty obvious - it's about a guy who's done some really terrible things, and is now expressing his intent to make it right.
    "In this farewell there's no blood there's no alibi cos I've drawn regret from the truth of 1000 lies"-
    Hard to interpret, could be a nod to suicidal thought, like his guilt was so great he thought he should die.
    "So let mercy come and wash away what I've done I'll face myself to cross out what I've become erase myself and let go of what I've done"-
    Simple-- "I need to change. I've done these things, been this person, but that's not who I want to be. I have to let it go, but it's not easy."
    "Put to rest what you thought of me while I clean these slates with the hands of uncertainty"-
    Could be him talking to the people he loves, like "I know you see only my past. But that's not me."
    "For what I've done I start again & whatever pain may come today this ends Im forgiving what I've done"-
    Very simple, this is him pledging to change at any cost and asking others to forgive him.

  12. Nack Classified
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    Jun 9th 2012 !⃝

    The video depicts what humanity has done to the world and itself, yes. But this song is about moving on from the mistakes you yourself did. Maybe to yourself, to others. Doesn't matter. It's about forgiving yourself, and moving on.

  13. anonymous
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    Feb 19th 2012 !⃝

    It means people make wrong choices everyday and sometime people have to come together to make this world better.

  14. anonymous
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    Feb 19th 2012 !⃝

    I think it means that we all can redeem ourselves no matter how far we have gone down the wrong road

  15. anonymous
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    Feb 17th 2012 !⃝

    I think all of you are right the song has many different meanigs like how the band has changed their style of music and is also about how mankind is ruining the planet.

  16. anonymous
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    Aug 20th 2011 !⃝

    This is about seeking redemption from others (NOT GOD IDIOTS) for your past mistakes, the opening line "In this farewell, there's no blood" is saying goodbye to who you were, and since you've technically not killed anyone you wouldn't need an alibi.

    Drawing regret from the truth of a thousand lies. Ever lied about liking something, or someone and wanted to tell the truth, but your afraid that if you did people might dislike or even hate you? THIS LINE RIGHT HERE, REGRETTING NOT TELLING THE TRUTH.

    The mercy he expects is from others, that they won't think of him any different now that he's told the truth, not divine mercy, just regular old "So what if you don't like Family Guy? You're still fun to be around" every day mercy.

    Facing himself is about owning up to what you've done, saying "yeah, I lied" Crossing out what he's become is making up for said lies, telling the truth, making amends.

    "Put to rest what you thought of me"
    Duh, I've said it before, he's a new man, telling people the truth, giving them a new perspective on who he is.

    "While I clean this slate, with the hands of uncertainty"
    Pretty much repeating what I've said before now, he's making amends, he's not sure if he can, and all, but he's doing it.

    Jumping to the next bit past the chorus.
    "I'll start again, and whatever pain may come"
    Ok, starting over, giving himself a second chance, telling the truth even if people will hate him for it.

    "Today this ends, I'm forgiving what I've done"
    He's forgiving himself for all the lies, even though they may have hurt someone, he's done what he can, and he feels release from these burdens.

    Ok, there's my two cents, and as far as I'm concerned the video is lame, it's obviously not about the planet, or GOD, it's about seeing what we have done, individually, and forgiving ourselves. We've all said or done something stupid, maybe these religious folks have gotten angry at others for disliking or not believing in god, or maybe you've said something hateful to someone, the point is to forgive you're self, it happens to everyone, and holding on to that hate is just stupid.

  17. anonymous
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    Aug 19th 2011 !⃝

    About how we discriminate other people.

  18. Gian Torres Binuya
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    Aug 14th 2011 !⃝

    live compassionately, spend every moment in your life as if it is your last. forgive yourself to what mistakes you have done and live your life to the fullest.

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