Light Bearer could be mistaken for a musical project that actively supports religious ideology, but this could not be further from the truth. Light Bearer seeks to deconstruct and attack religion from the ground up – religion is the bane of humanity, it is the crutch that must be broken, an ideology founded upon hatred, fear and superstition. Light Bearer is vehemently radical left wing, our agenda to criticize constructions of gender, to discuss the evolution of sexuality and evolution in general, to contribute to the eradication of the demonization of women and those who do not adhere to heteronormative stereotypes by religion, to see the sexes as equal and part of a whole. We are against all forms of theism, racism, homophobia and speciesism. Our goal is to highlight ideologies that should have been abandoned before the dark ages.
For those who might be interested in the books that our story borrows from, I thought it would be prudent to perhaps mention how these are incorporated into our narrative. I think the most important aspect is the idea of mythology. All classic mythology, including religious mythology which is often touted as “true” is based on allegorical stories that help to present ideology in a digestible form. The christ myth, which existed long before christ, was a tale that was adapted over and over again to suit various characters in the pre christian world (Osiris, Horus, Adonis, Mithra) – in the case of Mithra, a religion which was worshiped alongside christianity, and shared an almost identical mythos (Mithra was called the son of God, was born of a virgin, had disciples, was crucified, rose from the dead on the third day, atoned for the sins of mankind, and returned to heaven)
So what gives certain myth shelf life? It is all a case of circumstance, in the case of Christianity, it was adopted by Emperor Constantine, the first roman emperor to convert to Christianity, and played a role in establishing its defining facets, (the decree Nicaea) such as the divinity of Christ – actively discussing mythology as fact, turned mythology into truth, and in many ways politicising religion by making christianity a state religion (Edict of Thessalonica). Perhaps this is one of many reasons religion has become so intrinsic in society, once it was added to the rulers toolbox, it was a potent way of swaying public opinion, of demonising enemies and justifying decisions that if exposed without the shroud of religious intent, would allow ridicule and perhaps dissent.
But if this is the case, then can ideology that allows for a more altruistic view of the world, a more positive angle that promotes acceptance and love, compassion and empathy become part of our mythology? Can we hijack established myth and perhaps set it on a different path? In the case of the christ myth, the mythology was indeed hijacked, yet set on a course that offered nothing more than its predecessors. Christianity began life as a death cult. We remember and worship Christ, but how many consider Osiris, Thor or Poseidon in the same light? Can this mythology be derailed again?
We have taken some subtle leads from the creation myth in the Torah, aspects of Islamic lore on the fall of Satan, the His Dark Materials trilogy, Paradise Lost by John Milton and the Divine Comedy by Dante. To what end? to help support a new mythology. I would count Philip Pullmans work on the His Dark Materials trilogy, worthy of becoming “truth mythology” - (and yes I understand the oxymoron in that phrase) ideology based around scientific and social truth wrapped up in allegory, itself borrowing heavily and adapting past mythical works, yet setting new agenda? Can characters from books that inspire curiosity and progression replace the death cults of Abraham? With this in mind, names and character traits have been borrowed and woven into our tale to support this new mythology.
On Lucifer and religion -
Light Bearer is a metaphorical story about the dawn of enlightenment, based upon a number of interpretations of the Judaeo Christian version of the casting out of Lucifer and the fall of man from the book of genesis. The story is an intrinsic part of the mythological narrative of humanity, the subjective concept of good and evil. As an atheist, I probably think about the role of religion more than the average theist, perhaps because it angers me so much, or perhaps because the mythology is so rich, a story that has existed for thousands of years, far older than the main monotheistic religions of today, and has guided the framework of what many would call moral ideology - loathsome prejudices towards sex and sexuality, gender roles, race and culture. Ironically, besides these divisive ideas, there are elaborate tales woven from a patchwork of mythologies, borrowed, rewritten, stolen, fabricated and forged to describe and perhaps chastise the many facets of human emotion. The epic poem “Paradise lost” by John Milton (and the incredible etchings by Gustave Dore) serve as a main source of visual inspiration, but Philip Pullmans “His dark materials” trilogy struck a vital chord with me, the idea of the failed rebellion in heaven (in the novels, spearheaded by the angel Xaphania) against the oppressive false god and an attempt to broadcast this truth to all life in the multiverse. I wanted to begin with that story, combining it with various interpretations of the fall, which cast Lucifer as an unrequited lover. The story here is quite simple – the most esteemed angel cannot bow before anyone but god because of his love for him. When cast out for this act of devotion, Lucifer realises the hypocrisy and also the falsity of his gods claim over creation. With this knowledge, he charges himself with the task of keeping this truth alive, becoming his name sake and passing on the torch of enlightenment to all sentient life.
Ironically, Lucifer is a latin word, a language that did not exist at the time the Torah was written, and in fact was the name given to the morning appearance of the planet Venus, which heralds daylight. It became attached to the character of Satan through an interpretation of a passage from Isaiah 14:3 – 20, in which an all powerful Babylonian king was known as the morning star or day star, due to ideas above his station, shining as bright as Venus, until the sun rose, and thus eclipsed by god. This would soon be incorporated as part of the mythology of the fall of satan, and thus imbue him with the name Lucifer. For the majority of humanity, those who do not know or do not care to know the many versions of his story, Lucifer is the epitome of evil. To us, Lucifer is a metaphor for the pursuit of knowledge and truth, the 14th century design we use in our artwork his sigil. Like most mythological characters, the significance of that character is a personal one, because Lucifer is a word, not a person.