Supertramp’s “Logical Song” is a deep song when you really think about it. The lyrics tell of a person who admired the miracle of a beautiful simplicity life of nature. Then goes off to college and suddenly undergoes a paradigm shift. By going away, this new life allows him to learn how to be a thinker, intellectual, and skeptic.
The song goes on to say that while the world rests, the speaker stays up wrestling with the deeper questions that knock on his mind. The speaker’s desire is to know “who am I?” A question we all wrestle with to a degree.
I’ve always found this song to be more practical than it is ambiguous or philosophical. Many have commented extensively about possible interpretations, but I think the song is plainly stating something very obvious about our human nature, our quest for the deeper metaphysical questions of destiny, meaning, and purpose of our lives.
I consider the song to be a healthy critique of the college system too. The system that infiltrates and creates false dichotomies on religion vs. science/reason. Moreover, the same system wants to make an impression on gullible young adults to embrace a worldview of materialism and scientism.
I can remember vividly walking into sociology courses every year during my freshman, sophomore, and junior year of college to hear the same professor speak his hardline views on trusting only on the scientific method vs. supernatural fairy tales.
This is why the speaker of the song could boldly say people will label you a “liberal.. fanatical..a criminal” If you speak against what you once held dear. Some Christians do this today when they encounter family members that go to college, return for a break with a little knowledge contrary to their upbringing.
No matter how you look at it, the question of “who am I?” Is still not answered by the speaker in the song. I think the speaker knows that the only way to recapture the innocence of knowing their purpose and destiny is by returning back to the child-like faith of his youth. Their newfound life of being an intellectual hasn’t adequately offered an explanation, but yet has caused more questions to stir.
This reminds me of St. Augustine’s quote “for You have made us for Yourself, and our hearts are restless until they rest in You.” We long to rediscover the restoration or innocence our souls desire. As the speaker in the song noticed, creation has a distinct beauty and wonder to it. Well, that beauty and wonder had a Creator. God takes care of the beauty and animals he created. Jesus Christ pointed to this when he mentioned the Providence of God regarding the birds not reaping or sowing but pleasantly taken care of. Birds can fly knowing that their joy comes from having their needs met.
It’s ultimately in Christianity that we find the most adequate reasoned responses to questions on destiny, purpose, and meaning. All of which have their source in the person of Jesus Christ, who demonstrated himself to be not a mere man but the divine Son of God.
The same God who made the beauty of nature can fill our hearts back with what it’s deprived of, knowing who we really are.
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