Is it alright to listen to artists who have had dealings with the occult?

One of my favourite musicians, Florence Welch (Florence + the Machine) has admitted to wanting to be a witch as a child and also reading up extensively on the occult. I'm pretty sure that she looks at it now as just a phase, but she claims that she still is quite fascinated by dark/spooky things (seances, witchcraft, etc...) and has admitted to being haunted by hallucinations of demons when she can't sleep. The thing is, I just can't see any of that in her music and her album strikes me as something that's quite spiritually empowering, due to the religious symbolism her music conveys, as well as songs such as "You've Got the Love" (which is a cover of a Christian song). Oh and the songs that are meant to be kind of 'dark', aren't really what I'd define as 'occultic'. :shrug: She's also claimed to love the atmosphere of Churches, despite the fact that she herself isn't quite religious (although she has admitted to saying a silent prayer or two when boarding planes).

I really don't know what to make of her. On one hand, I love and adore the beauty of her music (which is basically a healthy blend between soul, pop, rock and folk), and on the other hand I'm afraid of interpreting it in a completely different light now that I've learnt all these things about her.

I guess ignorance really is bliss. :confused: So, yes. My question is, would it be acceptable to carry on listening to her music?

I think that if you ask yourself if it is right or not to listen to her music you ALREADY know the answer… in yourself.

Music is a part of her, which transmits… how to say?.. her vibration. I would not like at all to have to do with somebody who is fascinated by such things, ‘magic’ powers mean always darkness, they have never to do with transparency, purity, LIGHT.

Her music can only contain this kind of vibration.

I believe that every object has its own vibration. The new vibration medicine obtains substantial results through exposing ill organs to the vibrations they own when they are healthy. It works on the principle of resonance, it is an attuning. Following this principle every object we carry or every thing which comes from us possesses our vibration.

I would not like to be in the company (also listening to music, as reading, brings us in company with the author) of an impure soul.

I hope my toughts can help you in finding your own answer.

I don't know that I subscribe to the notion that music contains the "vibration" of the composer. That sounds a little new agey to me. :p

Basically, the general question underlying your specific question is whether or not it is acceptable for Christians to appreciate art made by those whose religious views are different from our own. I think it depends.

If you listen to this music and it makes you feel uneasy or makes you doubt your faith or steals your peace, then that could be a reason for you to stop listening to it.

But we cannot reasonably expect that all musicians are only devout practicing Catholics who think and believe exactly what we do. None of us are perfect. As long as her music does not contain any explicit blasphemy or promote immorality, what does it matter what books she read as a child?

FYI, I do not know who this artist is, so I'm just speaking generally here.

Also FYI, this is coming from a guy who likes heavy metal music. :o

Are you talking about the same Florence & The Machine who did “Kiss With a Fist” (before anyone knew who they were) and the more popular “Dog Days Are Over” and, more recently, a really off-beat cover of Buddy Holly’s “Not Fade Away”?

She’s not into the occult, so the answer to your question is: yes, it’s ok to listen to her music unless (as someone else correctly pointed out) - unless it presents an occasion of sin for you.

If listening to an artist’s music is the same thing as approving of the artist’s religious views, we’re all in trouble. Wagner is said to have been anti-semitic; does that make the Ring Cycle bad? Walt Disney was said to have been anti-semitic; does that mean we can’t take the kids to Disney World?

Admire or despise the art; admire or pity the artist. They’re separate.

[quote="Godfollower, post:5, topic:258956"]
Admire or despise the art; admire or pity the artist. They're separate.

[/quote]

Indeed there are a lot of benefits in separating the two. One can actually find themselves seeing any work from a whole new set of interesting perspectives upon trying it out.

To go the the extreme… would somebody like to listen to some music composed by a serial killer, even if it is very good? Or by Hitler?

Hitler is told to have been a very good painter but I would never want to have one of his paintings at home.

I could not stop thinking that it is the fruit of such a person…

I am convinced that looking, reading or listening to the products of a person is the same as to be in his/her company. When we read the Bible we feel a sense of bliss because we are in the company of God.

I personally would not buy anything, even if apparently beautiful, which comes from a person who practices black magic or occultism. Music can become a kind of connection with negative forces, and the ways to be reached by such things may be extremely subtle.

The minimum that can happen could be to feel ‘uncomfortable’ knowing the source, I think.:o

Lace,

I’m with Visudara on this one. Ignorance was bliss, but now you know something you didn’t know before. It may be that the Holy Spirit is nudging you away from this artist, but you are the one who needs to make the decision.

I can tell you from my own experience as a person that had music as a false god in my life, that eventually I came to see that I needed to put it in its proper place, and anything that led me away from God was something I had to lay aside.

When I listened to one particular artist, I felt as if he were a conduit for evil into my life. That’s how I felt. Needless to say, I never listen to him anymore.

Hope this helps!

-JohnPaul

As a guy who collects random fantasy artwork off the net, the only importance a name ever had for me is as a means of searching and organizing all images that had said artist’s style. I couldn’t care less about the artist’s personal life.

Yeah and Wagner was anti-Semitic. However, why aren’t even the Jews protesting every time Ride of the Valkyries gets played in commercials or in movies?

Just because you lack the capacity to separate art from artist, doesn’t mean others are the same. Furthermore, it doesn’t mean the capacity in of itself has no logic on its side. I’m pretty sure every school of artistic critique (from literature to music) has a strong camp that backs up taking creator out of the picture when interpreting the creation.

Uh, bliss? If you ask me, I hardly feel anything when reading Scripture. Please if you’re this emotional about your religion, that just makes it harder for you to be in any position to give advice on this subject.

So what do you do if an artist converts from Satanism or atheism to Christianity? Do you only listen to the songs written post-conversion? I think I would get exhausted doing the research.

And when I get exhausted, I just want to listen to some music, so I would have to do some research . . . . :ouch:

In the vein of another poster, Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart was a well-known Freemason while his music is allowed to be used as sacred and is used as such frequently. If you didn’t know, the Church has determined the alleged practices of Freemasonry to be morally compromising and has forbidden her members from joining ranks with it. His operaDie Zauberflöte is his Masonic masterpiece, containing all sorts of Masonic elements in the composition and in the plot by the librettist, another Freemason. Am I supposed to cringe everytime I hear Der Hölle Rache kocht in meinem Herzen (the famous Queen of the Night aria)? All this connecting all of these unrelated elements of an artists life to his/her work is largely done by those who need formation in their appreciation of art for what it is: art.

[quote="Corpus_Cristi, post:11, topic:258956"]
In the vein of another poster, Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart was a well-known Freemason while his music is allowed to be used as sacred and is used as such frequently. If you didn't know, the Church has determined the alleged practices of Freemasonry to be morally compromising and has forbidden her members from joining ranks with it. His opera*Die Zauberflöte* is his Masonic masterpiece, containing all sorts of Masonic elements in the composition and in the plot by the librettist, another Freemason. Am I supposed to cringe everytime I hear Der Hölle Rache kocht in meinem Herzen (the famous Queen of the Night aria)? All this connecting all of these unrelated elements of an artists life to his/her work is largely done by those who need formation in their appreciation of art for what it is: art.

[/quote]

It's not about art, it's about demonic spirits. An artist who "is quite fascinated by dark/spooky things" could prove to be pathway for them. Maybe not in this case, but Laceteacup is wise to consider this carefully.

I’m sorry but I’m one of those people fascinated by dark spooky things. On the other hand, my parents are involved in the hippie, feel-good New Age movement which focuses of positive, optimistic fluff complete with meadows and rainbows. Your point?

I often deal with this question actually. My fav. movie star is Tom Cruise. I think he is well meaning, but I am troubled by his devotion to Scientology. I feel Scientology is a devil cult in disguise and there are clear examples of Scientology based alternative medicines getting people killed. Look at Lisa McPherson. An organization that calls psychiatry a pseudo science is too irrational to be tolerated.

I really don’t want to give Scientology $ so I won’t see any more of his films in the theaters. But I do wish I could see Mission 4 this winter. He is a better actor than anybody.

And you’re missing my point. Why do you wish to integrate the life of an artist and her art into one as if the two can’t be separated? Is it because you don’t take music seriously with respect to its creation? It’s as much of a discipline and a study as anything else. In addition to it not being just a hobby that is synonymous with and can be lumped in with one’s hobbies and interests, it’s not autonomous, meaning there is nothing inherent in any given music apart from the reaction of the listener. Just because music can have certain conventions or connotations that are significant to any group of people doesn’t mean it has that significance to everyone. From what the OPer said about Florence and the Machine, this artist’s music doesn’t have anything that connects the musical act with the past interest of the individual who made the music, so I don’t understand how anyone could see an issue unless they were scrupulous or paranoid.

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