Re: Orbits, Solar Systems, & Onion Rings (or How Circular Tr

#11
FlyOnMelfisWall wrote:Not in the pilot, no. In the montage to start season 2, she was hitting some orange cones while trying to parallel park, I think. It could have been something else, of course (including nothing), but I took it as an indication that she's not that different from the struggling teen she was when the show opened, trying to "park" in a very tight spot, the spot between idealism and loyalty to her family.



To expand on this, the faint sound of ducks are heard right before or as he looks up at the sun. There's a palpable feeling of attraction on Tony's face, not of peace but of something alluring to him, something he wishes for. Kind of like the wind in his post coma days.

I read this as alluding to the "there's something after" comment in Melfi's office. His elusive desert revelation came from the sun and from observing a roulette ball that orbits until it collapses toward the center (sun) of the table. He wants and yearns for a life of infinite gravity, to be pulled towards an eternity with his ducks in the warmth and love and light of one mammoth sun. He doesn't want Livia's nihilistic "it's all a big nothing", "everything is black" ending. Which is another reason that I choose to believe that he didn't die when the screen went to black. When Tony dies, he will become part of an infinite, warm light, not an infinite, cold nothing.

Of course you could just as easily say that he did die and he simply got not what he wanted but what he deserved, which was that very black, infinite nothing we glimpsed.

At considerable risk of appearing more insane than I may already appear to many:icon_biggrin:, I must say that I have intuited and known for years that God was speaking directly through this series in some very profound ways, ways that I'm not even sure David Chase knows or appreciates. I think his talent and creativity have been utilized in aid of something that God wants us, the audience and/or Chase himself, to understand about ourselves and our universe and about "good" and "evil".

For those that scoff at the notion of divine inspiration or agency (conscious or otherwise), consider the very mystical, ineffable, indefinable nature of inspiration itself. Speaking from my own experience as a person who's undertaken a number of creative projects in life (I was a musical composition/arranging major in college and am now a video producer), inspiration just comes or doesn't come. There's no way to wish it, to quantify it, to imitate it, or capture it. It just comes and goes in its own time. The best you can be is always open to it and allow it to enter when it visits.

When it does come, it's exhilaration like no other, a fleeting feeling of insight and truth that I've never known from anything else in life. I have on a few occasions been essentially a person taking dictation when I've written certain things, including several posts over the years concerning the Sopranos. In those rare moments, the insights came not from my intellect or reasoning but from a spiritually-imparted truth that my consciousness seized.

Multiple times in writing the thread starter, I experienced that same tingling exhilaration, and I'm recognizing that, for me, the ending Chase gave us is to help me with my personal struggle in understanding the nature of God and free will and the co-existence of good and evil. And the personal truth that's emerging for me is that we all write our own endings. We determine whether we stay in a circular orbit of perfectly counterbalanced forces or break free, aided by external forces but not bound to them. We decide whether we will be sucked into the infinite light or cast into the infinite dark. God is neither good nor evil but is simply everything, of which I am a part. And so it is not the will of some individual force that determines "the end times" or "rapture" (as Detective Harris mentioned) but it is the collective will of "us", who comprise God, as to when we turn the Big Bang around into the "Big Suck" (pardon the expression:icon_wink:). He's not some independent entity who can write our ending for us. "Send not to know for whom the bell tolls, it tolls for thee."

I THINK Chase may be conscious of most of this, as the scripts, particularly from 6A suggest it. But it doesn't really matter whether he is or isn't from my perspective. It doesn't alter the personal truth I derive from the show or from the ending in particular.

It's as if Chase constructed a matrix of pixels or tiny colored dots using millions of different colors. He had to fill in every single row and column intersection with a color. Many of them he filled in with conscious intent and design while he filled others with what, to him, seemed random color choices.

Then we, the audience, each lay our own color filter over the result and see a slightly (or perhaps hugely) different image. The dots that make our final picture are all there and certainly do not seem random to us even though another person with a different color filter might see an entirely different picture.

Applying this analogy at the cosmic level, when the dots of our universe (including us) align such that every filter yields the same image, we will be ready for the Big Suck. The "everything" of the universe will collapse into what is described as the "final singularity" in quantum physics.

And, now, we leave the snake pit and return you to regularly scheduled posting.:icon_biggrin:


If you want to know what the meaning of all of this is, I think that you need to check out the writings and philosophy of Soren Kierkegaard. When you see things through this prism, it all makes a lot of sense, including the final scene and much of the series. It is not necessarily all a big nothing, at least it doesn't have to be.

Re: Orbits, Solar Systems, & Onion Rings (or How Circular Tr

#12
Fly, I have to say, your ability to articulate my meditations on the show is astounding. I mean you say so much of what I feel. And my mind gets in the way of communicating that feeling . I feel like for me you represent\paint this subconcious onto the canvas for all of us to look at. I sometimes thought, for real, that you might secretly be David Chase himself and I guess I'd never know for sure unless we met. That aside, I concur. If it sounds crazy than call me crazy as well. I feel that the universe has been communicating to us all through this show one way or another. Whether it be in a sublime way, divine way, or mundane way, this show provided a mirror for us and ultimately maybe the greatest spiritual parable of our time if everyone takes a look at it like you have Fly. And many of us have and cannot articulate as clearly as you are able to. Yet we feel somethings there for us. A message. And there is. And the message can change as we change. A single show can be seen from so many different perspectives that each one offers symbolic insight into the phyche of American spiritual life. The idea that although we may not notice it, the universe never rests. Even for Mobsters. ANd thats kinda of the point. EVEN for mobsters. Anyway I am just trying to say in too many words that I FEEL YOU 100% and please keep writing your thoughts because they truly have enlightened me and helped me understand more than I thought I already did. Which is exciting and means this show truly never ends when you think about it. You can go back and watch it so many ways. Truly AMAZING!!!!!!!!!!

Re: Orbits, Solar Systems, & Onion Rings (or How Circular Tr

#14
Johny Foulmouth wrote:so david chase is not a nihilist? or an atheist? cause I can't help but read the ending as "it's all a big nothing". feeling like that's what DC tried to tell us


I can't speak to whether he is an atheist, but he is not a nihilist.

Nihilism summed up is "its all a big nothing." That is not the message of Made in America.

The message there is "Don't Stop Believing." What you ultimately come to believe in is up to you.

For Tony, the thing that he believes in and that keeps him going is the belief that he can be the man that he would like to be. He may not ever get there, but he is intent on holding on to that ideal. The final scene at Holstens shows all of the things that Tony aspires to: the oversized football heros on the wall, the old fashion American ideal as exemplified by the retro-decor, a table full of boy scouts, and the "focus on the good things" advice from AJ. These are the things that he believes in that allows him to live the life that he does.

Sure he has to dodge the law (the guy in the USA hat) and would be assassins (members only guy) and otehrs, but those do not detract from his core beliefs.

Re: Orbits, Solar Systems, & Onion Rings (or How Circular Tr

#16
Lawguy wrote:If you want to know what the meaning of all of this is, I think that you need to check out the writings and philosophy of Soren Kierkegaard. When you see things through this prism, it all makes a lot of sense, including the final scene and much of the series. It is not necessarily all a big nothing, at least it doesn't have to be.


I'm not much of a reader, so I've not ever read Kierkegaard. But my mother was and was just flat turned on by knowledge. She carried a clipboard with her everywhere and was always writing out little nuggets she'd gotten from books, whether it was Thorstein Veblin, Einstein, or Mark Twain, or someone in between. There was a long period of time that I recall her carrying around a Kierkegaard book with her.

I may have vicariously absorbed some of his philosophy through her because she always wanted to talk about what she was reading, though none of us ever wanted to listen. RIP, Mom.:icon_biggrin:

ETA: Hope I didn't convey that the Big Suck represented "a big nothing". Quite the opposite. I see it as a black hole, a star so infinitely dense that even light can't escape. You are inside the light, part of the light, infinitely fused with "everything". It's the antithesis of "it's all a big nothing".
Tony, his spirits crushed after b-lining to the fridge first thing in the morning: "Who ate the last piece of cake?"

Re: Orbits, Solar Systems, & Onion Rings (or How Circular Tr

#17
ChristophersRelapse wrote:This show would be very less in my eyes if not for this site and the sites that preceded it. Fly your post was all i was expecting it to be. Chase < FLY :).


If I could restate your very flattering equation:

ChristopherRelapse + Chase + Fly + Everything = God

:icon_wink:
Tony, his spirits crushed after b-lining to the fridge first thing in the morning: "Who ate the last piece of cake?"

Re: Orbits, Solar Systems, & Onion Rings (or How Circular Tr

#19
FlyOnMelfisWall wrote:I'm not much of a reader, so I've not ever read Kierkegaard. But my mother was and was just flat turned on by knowledge. She carried a clipboard with her everywhere and was always writing out little nuggets she'd gotten from books, whether it was Thorstein Veblin, Einstein, or Mark Twain, or someone in between. There was a long period of time that I recall her carrying around a Kierkegaard book with her.

I may have vicariously absorbed some of his philosophy through her because she always wanted to talk about what she was reading, though none of us ever wanted to listen. RIP, Mom.:icon_biggrin:

ETA: Hope I didn't convey that the Big Suck represented "a big nothing". Quite the opposite. I see it as a black hole, a star so infinitely dense that even light can't escape. You are inside the light, part of the light, infinitely fused with "everything". It's the antithesis of "it's all a big nothing".


Kierkegaard was a very religous man. However, he understood that he could not prove the existence of god, or of good and evil for that matter. Thus, he reasoned that even though perhap he could not prove that the world was not all a big nothing, he could BELIEVE and have faith that there was more out there. This faith kept him going and was the source of tremendous comfort. He accepted that he might be a fool for believing what he believed, but he believed it nevertheless.

Tony is in that same position. His belief that he can be a better man is his faith. While it may just "go on and on and on. . ." He won't "stop believing."

Re: Orbits, Solar Systems, & Onion Rings (or How Circular Tr

#20
chaseisgod wrote:I like your theory, Fly, about God working through Chase, but it's a little hard to see the possibility of redemption in the portraits he (Chase, not God) painted of the Soprano family. "Everything turns to shit" seems more plausible, and that doesn't feel very spiritual to me.


That's a hard one for most people. Heck it was hard for Carmela, and she was Catholic.:icon_wink:

But this is where Christian faith, as far as I'm aware, differs from others. It is unique in offering redemption as a matter of grace (which you can think of as infinite love and forgiveness) in exchange for the simplicity of faith and contrition. It doesn't matter that Tony has lived a life of corruption and evil. If he experiences genuine contrition and comes to believe and accept the infinite love and forgiveness of Christ, he will be redeemed. That is a cornerstone of Christ's message.

The movie Dead Man Walking is a prime example of this. The experience of that killer's conversion in the last moments was absolutely authentic to me (and it was based on a true story.) The conversion didn't happen until he was willing to accept personal responsibility for what HE DID to the victims, not what he was exhorted to do. He had to own his actions, own his free will, and feel regret before or in concert with accepting forgiveness and accepting Christ as his savior.

The scene when Susan Sarandon tells a contrite Sean Penn that he is now "a son of God" is quite touching to me. He says he'd been called a "son of a lot of things" but never a son of God. But that scene conveys the awesome, awesome dimensions of Christian redemption. It's scary.

Many people have a problem with that, including those who pretend to be Christians. They aren't forgiving. They are big on condemnation and on one's deeds being the only arbiters of any fate after death.

As for how the show dealt with this, recall that Carmela questioned Father Phil in College. I don't remember the exact quote, but it was like, "You're saying that whores will get into Heaven before the righteous? Face it, Father Phil. We've got some major contradictions here."

She confessed that she still loved Tony and still "thought he could be a good man." Father Phil told her to think about it as "change through love" and reminded her that if she could help Tony "become a better man", she will have done good in God's eyes.

Also, in France, Carmela was trying to confront certain harsh truths about her life, trying to ask Roe about Jackie, Jr.; dreaming about Adrianna; etc. She was feeling the weight of the sin she had helped enable. And she got very emotional at one of the historic sites when she observed that people go through all the worry and hardships and strife of life and that, in the end, it's all just "washed away".

Carmela is certainly not a nihilist, so I have to think that remark in some way referenced Christ "washing away" sins, cleansing the soul. She was awed by the infinite love inhering in that cleansing.

If, through the infliction of death or catastrophic injury on Carmela and a number of years feeling guilt and grief because of it, Tony learns a new empathy, a new contrition, and a capacity to accept the frighteningly powerful force of absolute forgiveness, I believe he could be redeemed. And I believe that because I believe Christ is what he said he is: "the door", "the way, the truth, and the life" and that "no man cometh unto the Father but by me."
Tony, his spirits crushed after b-lining to the fridge first thing in the morning: "Who ate the last piece of cake?"

Return to “Episode 6.21: Made in America”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 1 guest

cron