"The Color of Right" as written by and Lifeson Alex Lee Geddy....
I don't have an explanation
For another lonely night
I just feel this sense of mission
And the sense of what is right

Take it easy on my now
I'd be there if I could
I'm so full of what is right
I can't see what is good

It's a hopeless situation
Lie awake for half the night
You're not sure what's going on here
But you're sure it isn't right

Make it easy on yourself
There's nothing more you can do
You're so full of what is right
You can't see what is true

A quality of justice
A quantity of light
A particle of mercy
Makes the color of right

Gravity and distance
Change the passage of light
Gravity and distance
Change the color of right


Lyrics submitted by NeoTwilight

"The Color of Right" as written by Geddy Lee Alex Lifeson

Lyrics © OLE TOREADOR

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The Color of Right song meanings
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6 Comments

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  • +1
    General CommentThis song draws an analogy between two different redshift effects, where the color (and wavelength in general, once it gets outside the range of visible light) of light from far away changes due to the expansion of the universe and gravitational fields, and the understanding of what is right and good in a situation.

    "Cosmological redshift is seen due to the expansion of the universe, and sufficiently distant light sources (generally more than a few million light years away) show redshift corresponding to the rate of increase of their distance from Earth. Finally, gravitational redshifts are a relativistic effect observed in electromagnetic radiation moving out of gravitational fields." -Wikipedia

    Hence: "Gravity and distance change the passage of light."

    The song describes the understanding of what is right as having to do with a balance of justice and mercy, informed by knowledge about the situation -- "a quantity of light."

    But here too, "gravity and distance" -- in which gravity assumes its other definition, having to do with the seriousness and urgency of the situation -- change our understanding of a situation, and even its objective nature. "Gravity and distance change the passage of light," and since that light, that understanding, is a crucial part of determining what is right, "gravity and distance change the color of right," just as they change the color of light from distant galaxies.

    This explains "You're so full of what is right you can't see what is true," and "I'm so full of what is right I can't see what is good." Dogmatic systems of morality, and the determination to adhere to them, often blind people to looking at the true nature of a situation to understand the truth about them. Unwilling to look outside their ethical rules and see if something different is required, they ignore or don't bother searching for the truth, or even basic common-sense goodness, so that they can force their understanding and their moral judgment into their understanding of what is right, rather than improving their understanding of what is right by considering the situation they face.
    eclecticstudenton July 04, 2010   Link
  • 0
    General CommentI don't have an explanation
    For another lonely night
    I just feel this sense of mission
    And the sense of what is right

    The feeling of justice is stronger than the hedonia in some people.

    Take it easy on me now
    I'd be there if I could
    I'm so full of what is right
    I can't see what is good

    Sometimes doing the right thing is paradoxically not the right thing... The Colors of Right are relative.

    It's a hopeless situation
    Lie awake for half the night
    You're not sure what's going on here
    But you're sure it isn't right

    The awareness of the paradox of the concept of what's truly right...What's really true..

    Make it easy on yourself
    There's nothing more you can do
    You're so full of what is right
    You can't see what is true

    It's not easy to get the real meaning of what is right, because the truth lies behind the circumstances.

    A quality of justice
    A quantity of light
    A particle of mercy
    Makes the color of right

    A flat concept of what Right is all about

    Gravity and distance
    Change the passage of light
    Gravity and distance
    Change the color of right

    Circumstances change the color of Right.

    -GrayWolf
    GrayWolfon October 23, 2006   Link
  • 0
    General CommentI see:

    1. Many people want (and even think they need) stark black-and-white categorizations of what is wrong and/or right (giving them a clear "sense of mission"), and have trouble dealing with situations that don't lend well to such clear absolutes (even keeping them up at night).

    2. Sometimes the right thing to do isn't simply the Absolute Right Thing, but something that's perhaps a bit more "good" than "right".

    3. The actual right thing to do may depend on circumstances and your relation to the issue at hand (gravity and distance), which affect your perspective of and effect on the situation (i.e., the "light" the helps define your "right").
    Thogekon June 05, 2007   Link
  • 0
    General CommentIt's about choosing what's good over what's right. Like, it's good to feed you're family, but it's not right to steal to do so.
    HugeRushFanon February 02, 2009   Link
  • 0
    General CommentThings aren't always black and white. What is right is sometimes a matter of perspective (gravity and distance). It's about being open-minded and being able to compromise or appreciate another point of view. Excellent song in more ways than one.
    CConteon April 02, 2016   Link
  • -1
    General CommentI think this song is about procrastination of a good person. "People are basically descent, convential wisdom would say" All us have good in us, but it can be hard to apply it to the cruel world we live in. Does this make sense? Any how, every time I hear this song it gives me a good feeling inside. -Thotw
    Thotwon August 11, 2005   Link

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