"The Weapon (Part II of Fear)" as written by Seung Hwan Lee and Ji Eun Lee....
We've got nothing to fear but fear itself
Not pain, not failure, not fatal tragedy?
Not the faulty units in this mad machinery?
Not the broken contacts in emotional chemistry?
With an iron fist in a velvet glove
We are sheltered under the gun
In the glory game on the power train
Thy kingdom's will be done
And the things that we fear are a weapon to be held against us
He's not afraid of your judgment
He knows of horrors worse than your Hell
He's a little bit afraid of dying
But he's a lot more afraid of your lying
And the things that he fears are a weapon to be held against him

Can any part of life be larger than life?
Even love must be limited by time
And those who push us down that they might climb
Is any killer worth more than his crime?
Like a steely blade in a silken sheath
We don't see what they're made of
They shout about love, but when push comes to shove
They live for the things they're afraid of
And the knowledge that they fear is a weapon to be used against them

He's not afraid of your judgment
He knows of horrors worse than your hell
He's a little bit afraid of dyin'
But he's a lot more afraid of your lyin'

And the things that he fears
Are a weapon to be held against him

He's not afraid of your judgment
He knows of horrors, worse than your hell
He's a little bit afraid of dyin'
But he's a lot more afraid of your lyin'


Lyrics submitted by shed27

"The Weapon" as written by Gary Lee Weinrib Neil Elwood Peart

Lyrics © OLE MEDIA MANAGEMENT LP

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The Weapon (Part II of Fear) song meanings
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  • +4
    Song MeaningThe first verse is an attack on FDR's assertion that there is nothing to fear but fear itself. Neil Peart has some rhetorical answers.

    It talks about how those who try to control us/ make demands of us come up with forms of "jut knowing" so that we have to surrender our minds to them, live in fear of the unknown, and just succumb:

    "He's not afraid of your judgement
    He knows of horrors worse than your Hell
    He's a little bit afraid of dying --
    But he's a lot more afraid of your lying"

    When he says "Can any part of life be larger than life," he is specifically attacking God/faith/all forms of mysticism. This is clear if you are familiar with Peart's philosophy.

    The final stanza is perhaps the most pregnant with meaning:

    "Like a steely blade in a silken sheath
    We don't see what they're made of
    They shout about love, but when push comes to shove
    They live for the things they're afraid of"

    The religious who offer us their philosophy come up with convoluted systems that amount to not much more than baseless claims (Kant's noumenal/phenomenal dichotemy, or the threat of hell, perhaps?)

    They shout about love (preach goodwill, kindness, self-sacrifice/immolation, "taking up a cross," "dying to be born into eternal life"). But when push comes to shove, they literally live for the things they're afraid of, namely the groundless claim that you will burn in hell. This is the "weapon" with which others hold against you to sacrifice your own mind and judgement to their irrational control over you.

    Finally, when Peart says "the knowledge that they fear is a weapon to be used against them," he is encouraging you to fight back with your own certainty and rational judgement and to hold them accountable for their unfounded assertions. True knowledge is what can be used against them, because behind the curtain, they are intellectually bankrupt.

    Those familiar with Peart's philosophy know where I came from with this one, and it makes perfect sense. So, no, I don't think I took it too far. I believe this is exactly what the intended meaning was and is.



    PapaSmurf45on December 22, 2010   Link
  • 0
    General Commentgreat song ! a fantastic rythem...electronic beat to a pulsating power riff. 'signals' is one hell of a cd.
    xl5ronon June 03, 2004   Link
  • 0
    General CommentOne of the best Rush tracks ever.
    nemton August 26, 2005   Link
  • 0
    General CommentWhich CDs have parts of Fear on them?
    blackrealm112on January 04, 2006   Link
  • 0
    General CommentWitch Hunt, Part 3: Moving Pictures
    The Weapon, Part 2: Signals
    Grace Under Pressure, Part 1: Grace Under Pressure
    Freeze, Part 4: Vapor Trails
    nemton May 09, 2006   Link
  • 0
    General CommentOops, copying mistake, change "Grace Under Pressure" to "The Enemy Within." Grace Under Pressure is the album, not the song.
    nemton May 09, 2006   Link
  • 0
    General CommentNope, the song has nothing to do with nuclear weaponry.
    nemton August 03, 2006   Link
  • 0
    General CommentI was listening to it one day, and I think I figured out what it means. The song is actually quite literal for Peart. It's basically saying that something a person fears, whether it be knowledge, weaponry, or something else, is a "Weapon to be held/used against them/him". (Which does include, but not limited to, nuclear weaponry.)
    TheEndIsNearon August 27, 2006   Link
  • 0
    General CommentHonestly, just this song, sounds like a throwback to the zenith of the Papacy and The Roman Catholic Church.
    addseale2on December 22, 2006   Link
  • 0
    General CommentMy favorite "Fear" song.
    thewritingwriter300on July 01, 2007   Link

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