This is a philosophical statement. It is intended to spark thinking and examining.
So, Bono and the Edge played at the Canada 150 celebrations in Ottawa over the weekend, with a nice, stripped down, acoustical rendition of their song, “One.” Quite lovely.
One of the articles I was reading about the performance noted something I found very interesting about the song. There’s a lyric in it that many people mishear or misinterpret. And when it’s pointed out and made clear (as, apparently, the band tries to do whenever they can), it really shifts the nature of the song, to what I think is a much richer place.
What most people hear is:
“we’ve got to carry each other…”
However, the actual lyric is:
“we get to carry each other…”
This single word switch makes quite the difference. It injects grace into the song. It shifts the path and creates a different idea of the One. It creates and even celebrates a Buddhist middle path, Taoist yin yang, straight up Niels Bohr way of saying “yes, we are different in many ways, and we can still come together.” It removes a notion of obligation in the got, and instead turns it into generosity and possibility in the get. It’s a One born from acting on our shared human desires and aspirations, our ur-intentions, regardless of the trappings of culture, society, interests, hobbies, romances, tastes, etc.
This get reminds us that we don’t have to really like someone, or want to be their acquaintance and hang out with them, or agree on everything, or be up to the same things in life, or understand everything about them, to still be committed to carrying each other. To a future that works for us all.
Exquisite. A melody well worthy of a celebration and worth living into.