System of a Down: Science Meaning
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Predicting the future of things we all know
Fighting off the diseased programming
Of centuries, centuries, centuries, centuries
Science fails to recognise the single most
Potent element of human...
anonymous Nov 24th, 2008 11:35pm report
...Youtube up Science live at the Lowlands Festival.
I haven't seen it for a year or so, but Serj speaks a little introduction for it.
With his statement, and the lyrics, I think we can safely interpret the song to mean that, although science has helped us so and saved lives, it is science that has polluted our earth, and it is science that renders philosophy moot. Because of science and its progressions, we do not think of why we are here.
- Josh S
anonymous Oct 31st, 2005 10:21pm report
This song is basically about the dispute between faith/religion and science. The first half of the verse is in favor of science "predicting the future of things we all know" shows the accuracy and usefullness of science.. "fighting off the diseased programming of centuries" refers to the large belief of religion in the past and how scientific theories are beggining to challenge them.. religion is the diseased programming that was "programmed in our head for centuries"... the second half of the verse seems to be in favor of faith..
"Science fails to recognize the single most potent element of human existance" which means that not even science can fully explain our existance. "Letting the reigns go to the unfolding is faith" THis means that faith does not demand reason or explaination for occurances, and kind of just goes with the flow.. "spirit moves through all things" refers to the ability for science to be proven wrong, but faith is more flexible and ultimately more powerful... moving through all things means that with faith you'll have to power to deal with evil and other problems.
To me, this song is about how logic, analysis and scientific thinking rule our lives. We, as humanity, are holding onto the reins of "science" to steer us where IT want to take us.
We need to let go of these reins by letting faith turn our possibilities into reality. Faith is simply believing in somthing so strongly, that it is practically a foregone concludion - hence the line "predicting the future of things we all know".
This song (and Innervision) are one reason why I like SOAD so much, they understand our true selves are not simply our skin color, social status, or DNA. Our true selves are what lies inside.
anonymous Jul 8th, 2013 7:25am report
Some of the members of SoaD probably practice a form shamanic spiritualism. In that light, understand that the pursuit of knowledge via "science" is seen to have separated mankind from an important aspect of his nature. The scientific method as evolved in the West and currently practiced roots man's thinking in the "five physical senses" (and subtly insists they are man's ONLY senses) and demands empirical corroboration before acceptance can even be tendered. This way of thinking can blind men to the wonders of the world and of life, which demand no proofs before one can embrace them. There is more to who-and what-we are than science can tell us. Spiritualism embraces and tries to explore those other aspects. But since these things cannot be quantified or empirically supported, science is deaf and blind to it. Through an adherence to "science" we can find ourselves being severed from that other dynamic/facet of life. It is this severance that draws the condemnation in the lyrics.
The song defines faith as "letting the reigns go to the unfolding." We should ask "The reigns to what?" and "The unfolding of what?" The answers can be as general or specific as each individual interpreter deems appropriate. For myself, I answer with, "The reigns of the world. As the Tears for Fears song says: 'Everybody Wants to Rule the World.' Well, stop. Stop thinking that you're the one in control. Stop TRYING to always be in control of everything. Don't always be attempting to FORCE things to go the way YOU think that they should go." AND: "The unfolding of life: my life, his life, her life; all life. The endless procession of the Universe. The flow of all things."
In other words, faith is just to ride the ride, man. Groovy.
It is implied that this is/could be the single most potent element of human existence. Or that it is spirit ("Spirit moves through all things.") Either way, science cannot be applied to measure or to explain. So-either due to inability or unwillingness-"science" fails to recognize it/them. Science cannot even recognize the existence of something like Gaea-the Spirit of the Earth.
It that shamanic tradition, Gaea is the soul of the world, and we are apparently killing her. But science does not know she's there, does not acknowledge her existence, and therefor cannot help to save her. Thus, science "fail[s] our mother earth."
anonymous Feb 23rd, 2013 2:47pm report
The song is about the belief that not only God created man and the world but also science.
anonymous Dec 27th, 2012 12:14pm report
I understand why people think that this is a science vs religion song, but it doesn't have to be interpreted in this way. It can also be interpreted as a Romantacism song from a romantacists point of view. Romantacism was the cultural/philosophical/art/literature/music movement against the Enlightenment way of thinking (which advocated that everything could be understood through science). Romantacism is the belief that nature is bigger than human understanding and will never be fully understood by humans. And this song is saying that altough science has done a lot for society, it can never fully answer our questions.
anonymous Sep 28th, 2012 9:50pm report
I have just one question... what the heck do they sing in the middle of the song? i just wanna know, thanks.
anonymous Oct 25th, 2011 10:36pm report
I think that the part where it says "Letting the reigns go to the unfolding is faith," is talking about how religion ignores the future outcome of their actions, and does some things only because of religion. It may also be talking about the evil people that find holes in their religion, and dismiss their evil actions because they can say their religion made them do it.
"Science has failed our world. Science has failed our mother Earth." This is know the religious argument, which Serj didn't make very strongly (deliberately). Religion is talking about how they are supposed to just ignore all science because they are supposed to believe only what their religion says. "Letting the reigns go to the unfolding is faith." This is the religion saying to ignore any consequences that happen as a result of your religious belief. Let the evil and pain unfold (give the reigns to the unfolding-give the power to the potential evil) is faith. Is what our religion tells us to do; to ignore what the outcome may be, and just do it.
But, in the end, you can find some clues that say that science can't prove anything, and there is still that chance that we are wrong, but there is no real way to find out the truth. The song is mostly about finding the truth. Science has helped us so much, but we can't know whether it's true or not, and there is the religious side that Serj says is in no way true at all, but the truth is something that remains hidden from us, regardless of what religion or science tells us.
anonymous Jun 24th, 2011 6:51pm report
Science recognizes Earth, Fire, Water & Air Elements. The potent element of human existence that science does not recognize is Spirit/Aether. The reason behind so is because science can not prove it, though science has proven many things and predicts the future of things we all know, science can not explain the religious occurrence of the spirit. therefor science voids the knowledge of spirit, and has failed mother earth by doing so, mainly because science focuses more on programming humanity as a human form not a spiritual form.
I'm pretty sure it is an anti science song. I saw a performance of this song where serj said something like "Science has failed our mother earth the increases in technology have not benefited the human race. we work more. we work harder. we work longer. we have no time to realize why we are here our purpose."
anonymous Aug 21st, 2010 8:44am report
Serj isn't a Christian to point that out to some of you.
anonymous Apr 9th, 2010 4:01pm report
"it is science that has polluted our earth"
I wish more people had a better understanding of what science really is. Science is the pursuit of knowledge. The technology derived from that knowledge is what pollutes the earth. Science has no direction, just like evolution (organisms do not have an end goal in mind when they are evolving, it just happens naturally as time goes on). It's the responsibly of the people to use that knowledge wisely. So please don't blame science for pollution, nuclear weapons, etc. If you need to, cast blame on the politicians and corporations who exploit that knowledge for their own gains.
"Because of science and its progressions, we do not think of why we are here."
Again this is a wrong assumption. Science is ALL about curiosity and asking questions, maybe not so much the why but definitely the how. It is the pursuit to understand what is not currently known. Think about it, you are trying to solve a problem where no one knows the correct answer yet. There is no one to tell you if it is right or wrong, you have to make that decision yourself based on the evidence gathered. That is science.
Faith on the other hand, by definition, is belief in the absence of evidence. This, in my opinion, is a mistake and we should withhold belief until there is compelling evidence.
anonymous Dec 22nd, 2009 12:41pm report
The analytical mind is unwilling to face reality without breaking things down and making a plan...making 2 possibilities a reality, predicting the future of things we all know. This sounds like 50/50 - a lack of faith means you cannot walk through life without scanning all the possibilities and picking the safer option. But ultimately, we cannot know everything, so science will fail us, and a life without faith is hell indeed.
anonymous Nov 30th, 2009 11:20pm report
Honestly i think system of a down is siding with religion becaause most if not all religious people including myself cant really imagine not beliving in a god. i think this song is basically saying that science is getting rid of the most important thing to most people. their belief in a god
anonymous Nov 17th, 2009 11:45am report
Making two possibilities a reality – TWO possibilities says to me that one does not disclaim the other. Science and faith (religion) can coincide. The animosity between the two is what holds both back.
Faith – I can only speak from my Christian faith and I must say that through the teachings of my saviour Jesus Christ I am not to turn a blind eye to science. My Lord does not want ignorant follows. We were given intellect not to sit idle but to expand our world views. In the Old Testament times there is no point God revealing Himself through advanced science therefore I think faith is in itself evolutionary.
Science has failed our world - Science cannot (should not) ignore the spiritual aspect of humanity. There is a code in everything that makes up life. Together with a spirit seemingly bound to each self creating diverse interpretations and interactions with all that surrounds us. We have scientists who are blessed with the ability to read the codes leading to the wonder of scientific discovery, most notably medicine. We cannot externally however read or break down to the atom of spirit.
anonymous Aug 5th, 2009 8:42am report
I'm not going to speculate as to what the true meaning of this song is. In my opinion all music is to be interpretive and mean something different to each person that listens to it. That's why it's so universal and moving.
Clearly this song is written about science versus faith, as everyone before me has stated. But I'm not religious, so I like to look at it a completely different way, personally. Humor me for a second.
My favorite line in the whole song is "Letting the reigns go to the unfolding is faith." To me this line helps remind me that sometimes you just have to take that leap, put your heart and soul into someone else's hands, have faith in human kind, and let yourself unfold to others and let them see who you truely are. What's life if you guard yourself constantly and never let anyone in? You have to let go and realize that you can not control everything in your life, and if you try to you will be miserable. Just let things happen the way they are supposed to, and yes bad stuff is gonna happen sometimes, but great things are going to happen to. It's all part of life and it's unpredictable and scary and amazing, all at the same time. Take whatever comes your way in stride, and know that it's all going to happen the way it's meant to be.
Hope maybe now you can see another side to it instead of arguing as to which is better, science or religion.
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