Does John Mayer have a religion? What religion is he? Jewish? Christian? Atheist? By simply listening to his music it’s apparent that he is a religion but you can clearly see that John Mayer is definitely searching for God, whether he knows it or not.
I’ve been an avid fan of John since Room for Squares. Even “Inside Wants Out” is a great album. His unreleased stuff “Sucker”, “Breakaway”, “Why Did You Mess With Forever”, “Taking On Water”….yes, I’m pretty much a fangirl. But over the years, I’ve noticed something a little unsettling about his music.
If you really take apart his lyrics album to album, you will find a few themes that keep surfacing over and over again:
Heart Wrenching Break Ups
(Victoria, Split Screen Sadness, Slow Dancing in a Burning Room, Heartbreak Warfare, Badge and Gun)
Wanting to go back and do things over, be a kid, or stop time
(1983, If I Ever Get Around to Living, stop this train)
Wanting to be with someone you’re not with whether an ex or someone else’s lover
(Dear Marie, Something Like Olivia Still Feel Like Your Man, You’re Gonna Live Forever in Me, Dreaming with a Broken Heart)
Song enticing a woman but admitting he wont commit –
(Half of My Heart, Tracing, I Don’t Trust Myself With Loving You)
Saying things he shouldn’t have said
(My Stupid Mouth, Come Back to Bed)
What central theme is underlying in almost all of these things?
Lust, remorse, longing, repeat. It would seem like John Mayer is smart enough to realize the futility of the material life, his introspective thinking doesn’t let him dare believe we live in a “what you see is what you get” type of existence. Just listen to his lyrics…John is definitely open to the idea of something more…
Is there a God
Why is he waiting
Don’t you think of it odd
That he knows my address
“New Deep” – Heavier Things
And he usually is pretty fair at taking a look at himself and seeing the dark recesses of the human heart…including the nonsensical destruction of fantasizing of giving in to temptation when you’re in a perfectly happy relationship:
Oh, I never know what makes this man
Take all the love that his heart can stand
And dream of ways to throw it all away
“Gravity” – Continuum
And he’s open to admit it seems like these problems are unshakably a result of our own blood filled hearts. This songs seems to be his most honest look at the human heart and it’s mechanisms of self destruction.
I can feel the love I want
I can feel the love I need
but it’s never gonna come the way I am
Could I change it if I wanted, can I rise above the flood?
Will it wash out in the water, or is it always in the blood?
“In the Blood” – The Search for Everything
But he also seems to be searching for that something extra in all the wrong places….women, alcohol, fame and ironically his own success in the music world seem like the big obstacles in his hunt for real truth. It doesn’t seem like John really is trying to solve any of his problems with anything that resembles religion. John does seem to be closing in on really asking the right questions in the title of his album “The Search for Everything”, though. Even though the songs within the album seem to tread through his familiar love and loss type ground, he seems to be drawing closer to conclusions to a truth that will set him free from the cycle. I can only hope John finds that truth that his soul seems to be driving him to go after.
A well slept….check
Messages waiting on me when I come home….
Well, what’s missing, John? What else would it be other than God? What is missing from the life of an internationally touring, multi-talented, grammy winning, attractive, wealthy, successful man with a loving family, relationships with the beautiful women, adoring fans and a collection of watches and guitars that would make anyone jealous? All his victories are material. You can’t fill a spiritual void with something material, no matter how much material you have at your expense. The only thing missing is God. And some part of him knows it. But it’s hard to truly seek God when you’re rich and famous because it sometimes it means parting ways with those things in order to do it…
“It’s easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for a rich man to enter the kingdom of heaven”
I hope that John really truly finds what he’s looking for. It took Bob Dylan quite a few decades to find God so let’s hope that John isn’t far behind. So what religion does this make him? I wouldn’t say John Mayer has any religion but he by his words and thoughts he appears to be agnostic: open to the idea of God, not fully set on what that might mean but willing to explore and listen.
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