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Thread: The Best Books on Wagner, interview with Michael Tanner

  1. #76
    Senior Member DavidA's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by JosefinaHW View Post
    DavidA, I would like to know what you have read or heard about how listeners of Wagner's operas consider Nietzsche's ideas of individualism, the will to power, and the belief that Christianity fundamentally has a slave mentality to be present in Wagner's music.

    Are these ideas conveyed in this music?

    Do many people believe they are conveyed in his music?

    Has anyone written about this. Not Fritz' alleged ant-semitism; the other ideas I mentioned.
    Wagner's operas have absolutely nothing to do with the Christianity of the New Testament. The Christianity of the New Testament is about freedom not slavery. 'If Christ sets you free, you will be free indeed.'

  2. #77
    Senior Member JosefinaHW's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Woodduck View Post
    By mocking Christ she was rejecting what Wagner tells us (implicitly) that Christ represents, and so suffers the intrinsic pain of her own unredeemed nature.
    You are saying that Wagner thought that a belief that an individual would be punished because they laughed at Jesus' suffering was antithetical to Christianity?

    Is this the same thing in Tannhauser? Did Wagner know that in Catholicism it is forbidden for ANYONE to say that another person is condemned to hell? And he was showing that such a belief is sick and twisted? I don't remember getting that impression when I watched the opera.


    (The rest of what you wrote is EXTREMELY interesting and thought provoking.)


  3. #78
    Senior Member JosefinaHW's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by DavidA View Post
    Wagner's operas have absolutely nothing to do with the Christianity of the New Testament. The Christianity of the New Testament is about freedom not slavery. 'If Christ sets you free, you will be free indeed.'
    I did not phrase my question well. Have you read or say spoke to another person who has said that they think that Wagner is endorsing/advocating a world where Nietzche's idea of the will to power and extreme individualism are the ideal?
    Last edited by JosefinaHW; May-27-2019 at 22:36.


  4. #79
    Senior Member OperaChic's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by DavidA View Post
    Well as someone who doesn't care why bang on about it?
    Because you're discussing it and I'm responding to your statements? When you bring up subject matters, reply to me, counter my thoughts with new ones and ask me questions don't turn around and tell me to stop.

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  6. #80
    Senior Member Barbebleu's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by JosefinaHW View Post
    It is not a religious question or at least I did not mean to phrase it as if it were a religious question. Is it not true that in this particular opera Wagner creates a character Kundry who is being punished because she laughed at Jesus on the cross? It doesn't matter what or what didn't happen a few centuries ago. Just in this opera.
    He does indeed according to the libretto. But at the end of the day Kundry is just a character, created by Wagner, as a means to an end. And Woodduck has given us food for thought in his posit that each character is a symbol of one entity seen from a different point of view.
    Last edited by Barbebleu; May-27-2019 at 22:43.
    "...it is said that first your heart sings, then you play. I think if it is not like that, then it is only just combination of notes, isn't it? " - Pandit Nikhil Banerjee, Master of the Sitar.

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  8. #81
    Senior Member Itullian's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by DavidA View Post
    Wagner's operas have absolutely nothing to do with the Christianity of the New Testament. The Christianity of the New Testament is about freedom not slavery. 'If Christ sets you free, you will be free indeed.'
    I think it's very Christian.
    Blood, spear, crucifiction, chalice, redemption.
    Those are Christian ideas
    When all else fails, listen to Thick as a Brick.

  9. #82
    Senior Member Woodduck's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by JosefinaHW View Post
    You are saying that Wagner thought that a belief that an individual would be punished because they laughed at Jesus' suffering was antithetical to Christianity?

    Is this the same thing in Tannhauser? Did Wagner know that in Catholicism it is forbidden for ANYONE to say that another person is condemned to hell? And he was showing that such a belief is sick and twisted? I don't remember getting that impression when I watched the opera.


    (The rest of what you wrote is EXTREMELY interesting and thought provoking.)
    Wagner's ideas on Christianity and the meaning of the Christian savior were complex, and would be an interesting subject to discuss. Right now i'm ferociously hungry and need to go to lunch! I'll just say that I don't think Wagner was saying what you suggest. Actually I rather doubt that the idea even occurred to him. I was only saying that he isn't presenting Kundry's wretched state as a punishment meted out by anyone, since there is no God in Parsifal to punish her. She might be said, figuratively, to be "punished" as the natural consequence of her own unredeemed state, just as the knights of the Grail are.

    In Tannhauser it's at least clear that Wagner doesn't have much respect for those, including the Pope, who condemn Tannhauser. I doubt that he had a view of catholic doctrine.
    Last edited by Woodduck; May-27-2019 at 22:49.

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  11. #83
    Senior Member JosefinaHW's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by DavidA View Post
    Wagner's operas have absolutely nothing to do with the Christianity of the New Testament. The Christianity of the New Testament is about freedom not slavery. 'If Christ sets you free, you will be free indeed.'
    I haven't read new posts yet, but if Woodduck is correct that Wagner-was thinking as Christian, as I've stated above, whether or not Wagner thought he was thinking like a Christian, he really was believing Christian values, at least in these two very fundamental points of theology.

    You and Wagner might be in agreement to a great extent.
    Last edited by JosefinaHW; May-27-2019 at 22:50.


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  13. #84
    Senior Member JosefinaHW's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Woodduck View Post
    Wagner's ideas on Christianity and the meaning of the Christian savior were complex, and would be an interesting subject to discuss. Right now i'm ferociously hungry and need to go to lunch!
    Good Sir, Where is your renunciation of self-gratification!!!


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  15. #85
    Senior Member JosefinaHW's Avatar
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    ^^ I meant the above in good cheer and fun.


  16. #86
    Senior Member Itullian's Avatar
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    Oh yeah, I forgot to mention the Good Friday music!
    When all else fails, listen to Thick as a Brick.

  17. #87
    Senior Member JosefinaHW's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Woodduck View Post
    Wagner's ideas on Christianity and the meaning of the Christian savior were complex, and would be an interesting subject to discuss. .... I'll just say that I don't think Wagner was saying what you suggest. Actually I rather doubt that the idea even occurred to him. I was only saying that he isn't presenting Kundry's wretched state as a punishment meted out by anyone, since there is no God in Parsifal to punish her. She might be said, figuratively, to be "punished" as the natural consequence of her own unredeemed state, just as the knights of the Grail are.

    In Tannhauser it's at least clear that Wagner doesn't have much respect for those, including the Pope, who condemn Tannhauser. I doubt that he had a view of catholic doctrine.

    My emphasis in bold. This is another way of saying what I mean. Catholicism (and I don't just mean the Catholic Church in Rome) was all of Christianity for a long time at least in major points of belief. VERY sadly the true meaning, spirit and actions of followers of Jesus has been perverted from the beginning, including popes. Yes, there are many historical accounts of popes, priests, theologians saying that someone is condemned to hell, and that people are punished for mocking the faith, etc., etc.,.... they are not acting as true Christians when they have done this.

    So Wagner is CORRECT in not having respect for such an action!

    Maybe my understanding is not clear to others. I believe that a person can be acting as a disciple of Jesus even if they hate what they understand what it means to be a Christian. The explicit words are not important, in my opinion. It's how you treat and think of others (including our non-human brothers and sisters) that makes one a Christian.

    A holy fool. A person who acts without guile and with compassion (to the greatest extent that is possible in this life) is a great hero. Like Siegfried. But this is also the true ideal of a Christian (and I would also say any person of any religion/faith that has developed a mature understanding of their faith).


  18. #88
    Senior Member Itullian's Avatar
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    Isn't it the Popes staff that grows green sprouts showing that he's forgiven?
    When all else fails, listen to Thick as a Brick.

  19. #89
    Senior Member Woodduck's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by JosefinaHW View Post
    Good Sir, Where is your renunciation of self-gratification!!!
    It will return in about fifteen minutes. Meanwhile this stir-fry is the highest good to which I can aspire.

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  21. #90
    Senior Member Woodduck's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Itullian View Post
    Isn't it the Popes staff that grows green sprouts showing that he's forgiven?
    Imagine the Pope's surprise. His prayer that night: "OK, God, what the hell just happened?"

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