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Mystic-State Allusions in Metallica Lyrics


"Ride the Lightning" Song by Metallica. 1

Metallica song "Ride the Lightning" 2

Metallica: Lose myself in a crowded room.. 3

Metallica. 3


"Ride the Lightning" Song by Metallica

UltimateMindBlow wrote:

>As you said we should think about a/the possible connection between the album title and artist's name. Now , i can't come up with any... metallica=metal+psychedelica?

I listed several album titles and several artist names.  If I said to associate the meaning of the album title with the meaning of the artist name, I simply meant associate which album title *goes with* each artist in my lists.  Now, it so happens there is some connection between the title "Ride the Lightning" and the name "Metallica".  Per Clark Heinrich's book Strange Fruit, Amanita is a high point of concern for the classic alchemists. 

The title of a book I've seen in more than one bookstore is

De re Metallica

by Georgius Agricola


I don't think it's about alchemy.  Describes the thinking of early technologists and shows the development of materials technology and related engineering knowledge of the late 15th century.  Published in 1556 by Georgius Agricola.

Metallica thanks Rush for help, in the liner notes of Master of Puppets -- on-topic for this discussion group.  Themes of death, puppets, God.


Farewell to Kings - cover shows a king-ego puppet with puppet strings disappearing into the sky.


The art of alchemy is, by that model, a matter of harvesting and drying and ingesting Amanita, and running it through your system round-trip multiple times (so that your body turns water into wine).  We can assume that the entheogen that fueled the album Ride the Lightning is LSD, rather than Amanita, but still this can generally be considered "alchemy" -- LSD does, after all, take quite a bit of chemistry skill.

The title "Ride the Lightning" refers to doing an LSD session -- here, ego death is allegorized metaphorically as death in an electric chair.  Heinrich wrote about Amanita as lightning-bolt, too.

What is the connection between the album title "Ride the Lightning" and the artist's name, "Metallica

Metallica is a Metal rock group.  Their third album or so, from 1985, is Ride the Lightning.


Click the cover picture to zoom.

Lyrics for the album (no annotations at the moment, compare my Rush lyrics page and you can easily figure it out):


Metallica song "Ride the Lightning"

Guilty as charged

But damn it, it ain't right

There's someone else controlling me

Death in the air

Strapped in the electric chair

This can't be happening to me

Who made you God to say

"I'll take your life from you!"

Flash before my eyes

Now it's time to die

Burning in my brain

I can feel the flames

Wait for the sign

To flick the switch of death

It's the beginning of the end

Sweat, chilling cold

As I watch death unfold

Consciousness my only friend

My fingers grip with fear

What I am doing here?

Flash before my eyes

Now it's time to die

Burning in my brain

I can feel the flames

Someone help me

Oh please God help me

They are trying to take it all away

I don't want to die

Time moving slowly

The minutes seem like hours

The final curtain call I see

How true is this?

Just get it over with

If this is true, just let it be

Wakened by the horrid scream

Freed from the frightening dream

Flash before my eyes

Now it's time to die

Burning in my brain

I can feel the flames


Metallica: Lose myself in a crowded room

>the new Metallica has quite interesting lyrics:


>Lose myself in a crowded room

>You fool, you fool, it will be here soon

>I seem to remember there was something about the phrase "disappear into the crowds" which appeared on a Rush album and some different album. Could you explain whats up with this phrase?

>The beast of no-free-will waits just round the corner.

Ozzy Osbourne: Diary of a Madman: Over the Mountain (Bob Daisley)


Over and under in between the ups and downs [up to peak, down again; and manic depression]

My mind's carpet magic ride goes round and round. [magic ride, common circular motif of mystic state]

Over the mountain kissing silver inlaid clouds [clouds = blurry perception, translucency]

Watching my body *disappear into the crowd*. [separate self-sense yields to a feeling of cosmic unity]

Don't need no astrology it's inside of you and me [inner, not outer, journey]

You don't need a ticket to ride with me - I'm free.

That last phrase may be ironic, after "free" is reread as metaphysical freedom rather than no-cost, given his phrase elsewhere "destiny planned out".

Rush: Presto: Hand over Fist:


I could *disappear into the crowd*

But not if I keep my head in the clouds

I could walk away so proud

It's easy enough if you don't laugh too loud

It may be most useful to say "no-free-will/no-separate-self", because the two are packaged together (despite common wishes to have no-separate-self while retaining personal freewill power).  Remember, when reading myth-religion-mysticism, what must be your starting point?  Experience, experience, experience!  Start by assuming that you are now in the midst of the intense mystic altered state, while reading the poetic lines. 

Your accustomed feelings are suspended, including the feeling of time passage, body-boundary, self-boundary, and personal control power.  From this feeling-sensation-experiential perspective, "disappear into the crowd" is a report and description of an experience of no-separate-self, with disappearance of the accustomed sense of being a bounded self.



Metallica: _Ride the Lightning_:

Fight Fire with Fire

Ride the Lightning

For Whom the Bell Tolls

Fade to Black

Trapped under the ice


Theory of lyrics:


'metallica' hits at egodeath.com:



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