Yeah, eh yeah yeah

I can feel a phoenix inside of me,
As I march alone to a different beat,
Slowly slowing down my fear,
Yeah, yeah

I am ready for the road less traveled,
Suiting up for my crowning battle,
This test is my own cross to bare,
But I will get there

It's never easy to be chosen,
Never easy to be called,
Standing on the front line when the bombs start to fall,
I can see the Heavens,
But I still hear the flames calling out my name

I can see the writing on the wall,
I can't ignore this war,
At the end of it all,
Who am I living for?

I can feel this light that's inside of me,
Growing fast into a bolt of lightning,
I know one spark will shock the world,
Yeah, yeah

So I pray for favor like Ester,
I need Your strength to handle the pressure,
I know there will be sacrifice,
But that's the price

It's never easy to be chosen,
Never easy to be called,
Standing on the front line when the bombs start to fall,
I can see the Heavens,
But I still hear the flames calling out my name

I can see the writing on the wall,
I can't ignore this war,
At the end of it all,
Who am I living for?

I can see the writing on the wall,
I can't ignore this war,
At the end of it all,
Who am I living for?

At the end, at the end,
Who am I living for?

At the end, at the end,
Who am I living for?

Heavy is the head that wears the crown,
Don't let the greatness get you down
Heavy is the head that wears the crown,
Don't let the greatness get you down

Oh yeah

I can see the writing on the wall,
I can't ignore this war,
At the end of it all,
Who am I living for?

I can see the writing on the wall,
I can't ignore this war,
At the end of it all,
Who am I living for?

At the end, at the end,
Who am I living for?
At the end, at the end,
Who am I living for?



Lyrics submitted by thoseguiltyeyes

"Who Am I Living For?" as written by Katy/stewart Perry

Lyrics © Warner/Chappell Music, Inc., Universal Music Publishing Group

Lyrics powered by LyricFind


Who Am I Living For? song meanings
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21 Comments

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  • +8
    General Comment:This song is full of Biblical allusions and I think that knowing her past might lead to what this song is about. She grew up in the church so she most likely heard all of the stories and I'm pretty sure her father was even the pastor. But she left the church when she began her career because her lyrics were counter to the things of the church. So from what the lyrics of this song, I think she is not questioning whether she is living for herself or living for the God of the Bible but battling over who to live for. So I'm gonna try to break it down so you can see where I'm coming from.

    -"I can feel a phoenix inside of me
    As I march alone to a different beat
    Slowly swallowing down my fear, yeah, yeah"
    According to dictionary.com, a phoenix is a mythical bird of great beauty fabled to live 500 or 600 years in the Arabian wilderness, to burn itself on a funeral pyre, and to rise from its ashes in the freshness of youth and live through another cycle of years: often an emblem of immortality or of reborn idealism or hope.
    So this could be that she feels something inside of her that brings life that is putting to death the old self and rising again immortally. 2 Corinthians 5:17 says "Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation.The old has pass away; behold, the new has come." The other lines could mean that she is doing her own thing but basically has to swallow her pride and admit she made a mistake.

    -"I am ready for the road less traveled
    Suiting up for my crowning battle
    This is test is my own cross to bear
    But I will get there"
    The road less traveled many times refers to the christian life and I dont think its too far to say that because of all the other Biblical/Christian allusion in here. She is battling over a life changing choice and it is only a choice that she can bear or make.

    -"It's never easy to be chosen
    Never easy to be called
    Standing on the front line
    When the bombs start to fall
    I can see heavens
    But I still hear the flames
    Calling out my name"
    There are countless stories in the Bible where God called or chose someone to do something and they were never easy just as she is saying here. I think with her past knowledge of the Bible, she knows how she is living is not right and God is calling her to something even greater but it might cost her her career. She knows she has to make a choice and she knows that she can choose God and heaven but the world keeps pushing her and telling her to live an immoral life and reject God leading to the flames of hell.

    -"I can see the writing on the wall
    I can't ignore this war
    At the end of it all
    Who am I living for?"
    Daniel 5 talks about writing on the wall but its too long to copy to here so you can go read it on biblegateway.com but part of what was written on the wall was You have been weighed on the scales and found wanting. So possibly she could feel that her life has been weighed and still there is something lacking and that it is not something that she can just simply ignore.

    -"Heavy is head that wears the crown
    Don't let the greatness get you down
    Heavy is head that wears the crown
    Don't let the greatness get you down"
    Heavy headed means to be dumb or obstinate and I think it means that the person who rules his life is foolish and that perceived greatness will in turn cause you to lose everything.

    -"(At the end, at the end)
    Who am I living for?
    (At the end, at the end)
    Who am I living for?
    In the end when Christ comes again there will be a judgement talked about in Revelation of the Bible and truly at that point at the end its when those that lived for Christ will be rewarded with heaven and those that chose to live for themselves will have chosen hell. So it is critacally important who you live for





    OneLifeToGiveon January 02, 2011   Link
  • +2
    General Comment:I love the line "I am ready for the road less traveled" and I love the reference to Esther.
    medinadinaon August 30, 2010   Link
  • +2
    General Comment:I think that this song means to be true to yourself. There are religious references in the song, which I think are meant to be taken in a spiritual manner rather than in a religious sense. A spiritual teaching in Christianity that comes through in this song for me is the personal victory in faith, in heeding how one is chosen or called. She is called to the road less traveled, to strive in making a real difference in originality. It seems she feels that to be true to herself, she lets go of any control others may have on her art, be it organized religion, or the music industry itself, though none of us live in a vacuum or are completely alone and these people exist in relation to the artist. The war is both the circumstances of living in the world and its pressures as well as the personal struggle she mentions of facing one's own fear, the personal cross to bear. Heavy is the head that wears the crown is similar to a line in Shakespeare's Henry IV, "Uneasy lies the head that wears a crown," and refers to the responsibility of leadership and it's affect on others. It shows she takes the influence of her art seriously, and I think she believes letting her light shine in her own way is the best influence right now even though it has the power to shock. She'll go with this for now, though it's all in the sea of relationships with fans, organizations in society like religion and the media industry, so her question remains, "Who am I living for?"
    Spiritvoiceon November 24, 2011   Link
  • +1
    General Comment:this song is insane.
    so fuckin pure,
    possibly my favourite on TD.
    thrwmyhrtawy.on August 23, 2010   Link
  • +1
    General Comment:I agree this song is intense, and what it makes even more like that, is her voice. It sounds amazing, so raw and emotional. I love her voice, I wish she would make more songs like these so her voice could be really taken seirously
    spunkychickon September 03, 2010   Link
  • +1
    My Interpretation:This song is about Perry's personal struggle between the direction she wants her music to take her and her fans and what pop culture and the media expects and wants from her. She is a former gospel singer, so she does have strong Christian roots. Her debut single "I Kissed A Girl" is sexually charged and homo-erotic, which obviously butts heads with a Christian belief system. Songs from this album like "Peacock" and "T.G.I.F" are about lust and gluttony. The title of "Who Am I Living For?" states the idea of the song - is she performing music that she feels in her heart or is she performing music that will boost her record sales? "I march alone to a different beat" means even though her songs are similar to artists with more unapologetically sexual songs like Rihanna with "S&M" and Ke$ha with "Fuck Him He's A DJ" (yes, that is the actual title), she feels separate from them because she knows there's more to music than sex. "I am ready for the road less traveled/suiting up for my crowning battle" she's mentally and spiritually preparing herself to write and perform music she feels more comfortable with, possibly with a more religious feel. "It's never easy to be chosen/never easy to be called" she feels God has literally chosen her to be a voice of reason in this corrupted music industry. He helped her on her path to success specifically so she could bring God back into the mainstream. "I can see the Heavens but I still hear the flames/Calling out my name" she knows her 'task' is possible, yet the allure of giving into what the mainstream wants for her and her career is all too real. The chorus addresses how in the beginning of her career she went along with what everyone wanted of her but now she can no longer ignore that this is not what she intended for her music. "I can feel this lightness inside of me" she feels the light of God in her soul and she knows if she introduced it into her mega-popular music, she could share God's love and "shock the world". In the second verse after the first chorus she addresses God directly and asks for His favor "like Ester". Perry knows she will have to sacrifice popularity if she wants to share her message of God's love with the world, "But that's the price" she is willing to pay. "Heavy is the head that wears the crown" She feels this is an extremely risky and daunting task to undergo, but she will not "Let the greatness get (her) down". The points in the song when she sings with an English accent ("crowning bat'le" and "bol a light-en-ning") are nods to her English husband Russell Brand who clearly supports her in her charge of bringing her beliefs into the mainstream. The numerous biblical allusions (phoenix, cross to bear, being chosen, Heaven/Hell, writing on the wall, Holy War, inner light, Ester, sacrifice) all reference what Perry's struggle is about - giving into the mainstream or staying true to her religious beliefs. For Perry this is an incredibly deep song and an insight into her view of the media industry and what it all means to her. Will she give in? Or will we continue to see more songs like this from her?
    elt220on April 11, 2011   Link
  • +1
    General Comment:I liked this song better when I didn't read all these comments talking about religion.
    charcharadeon May 15, 2011   Link
  • +1
    My Opinion:I agree with the belief that Perry is singing about her struggle between her lifestyle and a Christian lifestyle, but I disagree with the interpretations of the lines, "Heavy is the head that wears the crown, don't let the greatness get you down." I think this is making a reference to Jesus' crucifixion. When Jesus was crucified, the crowd mocked him and the officials placed on his head a crown of thorns. Jesus had a great responsibility, and while he was God in flesh, he still was that: flesh. I think what this line means is that if you live a true Christian life, you will be mocked. It's a great responsibility. You have to make sacrifices and it might hurt a little or be uncomfortable but, you are greater for dong so. The payoff is so great. So, what I think Perry is saying here is that living a Christian life is hard and can hurt, but you can't let it get you down because the reward is infinitely great.

    Keep in mind, I'm not trying to offend anyone with my beliefs. While I'm a Christian, I'm not looking to force my belief system on anyone else. Jesus is my role model and I try to live a life that would please God, plain and simple. If you want to learn about Jesus, you know my name. (:

    -ernyc
    ernycon July 21, 2011   Link
  • 0
    General Comment:I know i'm wrong; but i will try; maybe this song is about realizing she's living for all the wrong reasons and not for herself. She's gotten a wake up and realizes that she needs to live for teh important things.
    JacobLasheron September 16, 2010   Link
  • 0
    General Comment:i think that song is about the bittersweetness of fame. she's talking about how great it is, but within a second it can all change.
    b2m9mon September 26, 2010   Link

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