US and THEM Index
by Carl (Aka ThECLERiC)
This one's the toughest I've faced, maybe because it covers an area in which I haven't got much knowledge. But before everything starts I'd like to salute my fellow Floydians worldwide.
IMHO, I think that Echoes is about new-age religions, which started to appear during the late 60s. These transcendental religions, always full of meditation and stuff like that... You probably heard a lot about them. A good example would be "The Temple Of The Sun" who committed suicide right when the Hale-Bopp comet was passing, and you know the whole story so I'll just get on.
So these religions flourished in late 60s and started to receive adepts increasingly, and now they have their own dogmas and principles, offices, churches... it's a whole new revolution. So I think that Echoes is a focus on these religions, more on this below...
Overhead the albatross
Hangs motionless upon the air
And deep beneath the rolling waves
In labyrinths of coral caves
The echo of a distant time
Comes willowing across the sand
Well this is probably the hardest part... I guess it's a picture of the Supreme soaring high above all religions (including the new-age one, the "echo" which comes "willowing", that means, not straight but rather "pulsating" slowly). Sorry I cannot explain any further but this is just as far as my imagination can get :)
And everything is green and submarine
Everything is green... Green is the color of fertility. Submarine? Below water => quiet.
And no one showed us to the land
And no one knows the wheres or whys
Nobody really gave these adepts directions, so it was a "call" to the truth. They went to this unknown place (fearless?) because they trust that it's the right place.
But something stirs and something tries
And starts to climb towards the light
Something deep down in their soul starts to shake and goes spiraling and the truth starts to emerge, they are going towards the "light", in other words, towards the truth, or God. There's some kind of an allusion to evolution of mind/awareness.
Strangers passing in the street
By chance two separate glances meet
And I am you and what I see is me
Ok there's an idea I want to release here so pay attention a little bit. These verses refer to a concept that these (and most) religions have. It's about unity. What I mean by unity is that, disregarding all our material and physical outer shell, we are all the same, and we all share the same consciousness and conscience. It's the fundamental state of all living creatures. So these two strangers look alike because they don't give any importance to the physical state but rather to the fundamental state of soul nature. So it's like looking at a mirror, thus the line "And I am you and what I see is me".
And do I take you by the hand
And lead you through the land
And help me understand the best I can
Ok now it's the "teacher" or initiator talking to the adept. He usually introduces him to the "community" and he teaches him the ground rules and code and stuff like that. But, at the last line, the teacher, by doing his job, is being enlightened. It's a concept they have to urge people to teach and get taught.
And no one calls us to move on
And no one forces down our eyes
And no one speaks and no one tries
And no one flies around the sun
Now all adepts are enlightened. They are all in contact with that universal fundamental state of awareness. The first two verses indicate that there are no teachers anymore, everyone is equally enlightened. Language is unnecessary, communication is telepathic, and so nobody tries hard to interact. "No one flies around the sun" ... hmm... could it mean that nobody is looking up to the absolute truth, because now they are INSIDE the truth? So lyrically it would become "no one flies around the sun since everyone is inside it now". Possible.
Cloudless everyday you fall upon my waking eyes
Inviting and inciting me to rise
And through the window in the wall
Come streaming in on sunlight wings
A million bright ambassadors of morning
Every morning, through the window in the wall (the window is the new whole opened by the Light of Truth into the adept's mind), a million lights come to shine on his waking eyes. I guess it's a really clear reference to the enlightening the adepts are receiving daily.
And no one sings me lullabies
And no one makes me close my eyes
Very simple idea: nobody "puts me to sleep", that means, nobody hides the truth from me (as an adept) so I'm in the heart of the truth now.
So I throw the windows wide
And call to you across the sky
Throwing the windows wide... wouldn't that be getting rid of all obstacles between the adept's mind/soul and the absolute truth? I guess it is. And then after throwing all obstacles away, the adept calls to God.
Well I hope that I made a pretty clear explanation. Of course things can be taken a lot further, but the document would become very complicated, and we don't want that, do we? :) Right. I'm open to all suggestions/corrections/ideas/exchange or whatever crosses your mind, so just email me at: Carl@ELKhabbaz.Org or you can find me on IRC, Undernet #Pinkfloyd&Co. and dalnet #Planet_Floyd.