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Dear God, hope you get the letter and
I pray you can make it better down here
I don't mean a big reduction in the price of beer
But all the people that you made in your image
See them starving on their feet
'Cause they don't get enough to eat from God
I can't believe in you

Dear God, sorry to disturb you but
I feel that I should be heard loud and clear
We all need a big reduction in amount of tears
And all the people that you made in your image
See them fighting in the street
'Cause they can't make opinions meet about God
I can't believe in you

Did you make disease and the diamond blue?
Did you make mankind after we made you?
And the Devil too!

Dear God don't know if you noticed but
Your name is on a lot of quotes in this book
And us crazy humans wrote it, you should take a look
And all the people that you made in your image
Still believing that junk is true
Well I know it ain't, and so do you
Dear God
I can't believe in
I don't believe

I won't believe in heaven or hell
No saints, no sinners, no devil as well
No pearly gates, no thorny crown
You're always letting us humans down
The wars you bring, the babes you drown
Those lost at sea and never found
And it's the same the whole world 'round
The hurt I see helps to compound
The Father, Son and Holy Ghost
Is just somebody's unholy hoax
And if you're up there you'll perceive
That my heart's here upon my sleeve
If there's one thing I don't believe in

It's you
Dear God



Lyrics submitted by Motor27

"Dear God" as written by Andy Partridge

Lyrics © EMI Music Publishing

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Dear God song meanings
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69 Comments

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  • +7
    General Comment:Andy is a militant atheist. It's amazing how people see what they want want to, no matter how clear the message is. The idea that he must believe in god because it's addressed to god is just silly. It's a lyrical device...take a literature course. For those who refuse to see the song for what it is and how it was meant, here is a quote from Andy about the song:

    "it [Dear God] failed in part, because it wasn't as caustic as I would've liked it to be. It should've been a nail in throat of the public, but instead some took it as a declaration of faith when I wanted to make it clear that I don't believe in God - and that even if there is a He or a She they have nothing to do with organized religion."

    Just watch the video for Dear God. Andy is attacking the massive twisted tree (religion) that people are desperately clinging to, which is exactly what he is doing in the lyrics. I really don't see how he could be any clearer.
    EnidCaulfieldon June 05, 2004   Link
  • +4
    General Comment:For those of you trying to tear apart the logic in this song, try to remember that this is NOT a reasoned argument in favour of athiesm, it's an account of feelings and thoughts. Rather than "I don't believe in God because of [insert carefully reasoned argument here]", it's more of a case of "I can't believe in God because of this gut feeling I have".
    Taken as an argument, this song is very weak, and anyone could tear it apart in seconds - but then, the converse could be said about the Psalms, for instance. Their purpose is not to argue the existence of God - rather, it is to glorify the concept of God. Similarly, this song explains the belief of the write, rather than justifying it.
    whapcapnon January 12, 2006   Link
  • +4
    General Comment:Imo its a pretty obvious statement about how the he (the songwriter) cant believe in god. Mostly because of all the suffering in the world, but also because god seems to be a creation of men and not the opposite.

    As Whapcapn said, its not a strong argument, but an expression of feelings towards him.
    Leanderon April 02, 2009   Link
  • +3
    General Comment:I think that he does WANT to believe in god, thats why he adressess the letter do Him, but he just can't believe in God, because of such things the song tells us about. That's why he says "I can't believe in you". It's not irony, its just a state of disbelief.
    diogoon March 17, 2003   Link
  • +3
    General Comment:a few religious backers, which is fine.

    I have a problem with zenwizard's point:
    "The letter writer acts like a spoiled kid and thinks God should fix mankind's screwups just like his mommy and daddy fixed all his."

    I think it's a little much to chalk up someone's disappointment with hunger and war as 'whining'. Why would God make in inferior product that had to cope with such suffering?

    If that's not a legit complaint, then nothing is.
    boytoyeon July 24, 2005   Link
  • +1
    General Comment:I think this is easily one of the greatest songs out there. I just love the way it's written because it is all truthful. But one thing bothers me is that I would try to share the song with others and they wouldn't bother to listen to the lyrics. They would just rather hear the word God and then think it's a Christian song.

    This song will remain a favorite of mine for a long time.
    adistantshipon December 30, 2005   Link
  • +1
    General Comment:Man people who say that the songwriter cannot compose a letter addressed to God unless he believes in God need to pay more attention in English class.

    Obviously, the author is pointing out the age old "Argument from Unnecessary Pain and Suffering" against the existence of an omniscient, omnipotent, benevolent god.

    Ok, for the slow ones here, he's attacking the concept of God (xian one). The instrument is a vehicle. Understand the difference between something existing only as a concept and something existing in a physical (here super-natural) sense.
    telerionon February 20, 2006   Link
  • +1
    General Comment:This forum is meant as a place to discuss the meanings behind songs. The name calling should go. The external "evidence" should go. I want to read about what people feel the song means, not about why the singer is wrong - not about why the lyrics are pointless, or contrary. We don't need to attack each other.

    I liked UglinessMan's points, btw.

    Okay, we can argue all day about whether God is real or not. Let's talk about the song.

    Seems to me it's about the hypocricy of religion, as it pertains to an ultimate truth. He's taking the dogmatic statements of The Bible, and then comparing them against the hypocricies of man and nature. Why create disease? Why create starvation? If you are real, why allow men to fight and kill in your name? Where are you? It always seemed like a spirtual struggle, but hearing Andy Partridge quoted as saying that he should have made it more virulent, makes me revise my thoughts. I always felt it was about a man, speaking with his inner-child, asking pointed questions of God. "If you're there... answer me." If you created blue diamonds, tell me. If you exist, help Your creations to stop crying. We Beseech Thee, Here Us. He says, "If you're there, my heart's on my sleeve -- I'm BEGGING you -- let me know."
    Sir_Larrikinon November 20, 2006   Link
  • +1
    Memory:I remember hearing this song for the first time and thinking "This is exactly how I feel". I had only superficially encountered XTC before this, but from that point onwards I dived headfirst.

    I think one thing that Andy may have wanted to add was something along the lines of:
    "You want me to believe in you and accept you into my heart and then everything I've done will be forgiven. If I don't, it does not matter how moral and caring I have been, you will damn me to eternal punishment. Well that make you a completely arbitrary arsehole, so you therefore don't deserve my belief/worship even if you did exist"
    felixmeisteron March 17, 2009   Link
  • +1
    General Comment:For those who are befuddled as to how anyone could possibly interpret this song differently from you or from what Andy intended, I would respectfully recommend you get out of English class and go take a psychology or NLP class. It's not any more complicated than the fact that everyone's mental map of the world is different, and no matter how "obvious" you try to make the message, there will always be others who process it differently from what you intended. This is not a bad thing at all, or even a good thing necessarily, it just is what it is.

    The decision to address the song to God is a fantastic choice because it creates drama and tension. And, (unfortunately for the hardliners here) it leaves the song open to some interpretation. It's not a stretch for someone to look at the line "if you're up there you'll perceive, that my heart's here upon my sleeve", and read a sort of hopefulness in it that someone is hearing his message, even the doubt is strong. I always thought this song leaned strongly toward atheism, but at its core was more about doubt and frustration than it was about rigid disbelief. The fact that you could see a sliver of hope in the middle of all this unleashed anger was one of the more interesting things about this song.

    Bottom line is, this song doesn't belong to Andy or any of us, it belongs to whoever is listening to it at the time. They will make it whatever they want it to be, and that's what art is all about.
    Elevationon August 05, 2009   Link

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