Friday, 3 June 2011

Mammon, 'mother monster' & the marketing machine

It’s easy to veer towards idealistic thinking about a person or topic from an early superficial viewpoint. Having read a bit more about her and seen a few of the videos, I now feel some comments I made relating Gaga to God need qualifying. No denying she’s fizzing with creativity, nor that human creativity reflects something of the Creator - but there’s a clearly a more complex mix going on here. As with Madonna, videos and lyrics are littered with religious imagery, and sexuality paraded and commented on in dark and disturbing ways. With some cleverness and irony too, of course.
I’m reading ‘Jesus of Nazareth’ by Gunther Bornkamm, pupil of Rudolf Bultmann, written 1960. Exciting to learn more of the historical and political background to Christ‘s ministry. Today read Mark 11: 15-19 about Jesus cleansing the temple. The broad insight it communicates: he was passionate about the holiness - set-apartness - of spiritual space, the presence of God; and was active in defending and protecting it from the encroachment of materialism - the worship of money. Engaged as I am in creative communication in writing and commercial radio, seeking to embed and embody aspects of the gospel message in a pop culture setting, I’m fascinated in finding and expressing connections - as well as more directly with my own life. So here for instance, the report of Christ’s confrontation with the worship of mammon - money - comments implicitly on the presumably often ruthless kind of marketing machine that picks up and exploits the talent of a star like Gaga (also known as 'mother monster'). Where is the sacred space in the whole enterprise, and in a ’star’s life - and how can it possibly be guarded? And in my own life - I need to explore ways that I too can fight for the protection and promotion of sacred space - recognition of the presence of God in our culture - not least in the material world of commercial radio.

3 comments:

Billy said...

I think Gaga's probably doing quite well for herself.
On what basis do you presume to speak for or on celebrities? Who says they all worship money, and if they were, are happy and not hurting anyone, so what?

I need to explore ways that I too can fight for the protection and promotion of sacred space - recognition of the presence of God in our culture

Why does it need protecting if no one is interested? Why does god not do his own work?

Sunshine given you a creative burst?

cerebusboy said...

>>>>(also known as 'mother monster'). Where is the sacred space in the whole enterprise, and in a ’star’s life - and how can it possibly be guarded?

Lol, if you're challenging materialism, then you might want to start at the iCrap-addled, Boden-catalogue-with-theological-pretentions evangelical church culture! Beam in your own eye, and all that ;-)

Bruce said...

ta for comments/qs billy, ryan, been mad busy finishing coursework but i'll reply soon (and in earlier posts)