[VERSE 1]
And they're thought to be lies
But we saw them, saw them
We looked right in their eyes
Right at them, at them

[VERSE 2]
Pinning space to the world
We slaughtered, slaughtered
Not a sound to be heard
We're awful, awful

[CHORUS 1]
And have you seen
How they run
Out of gas
They beat the pain
They sing in the rain
Endless and formless
They fly to the end
And back to the
Beginning again

[VERSE 3]
Have you put them aside
Your crazy thoughts and dreams
No they're a part of me
And they all mean one thing

[VERSE 4]
The will to death is what keeps me alive
It's one step away
step away
Limitations are set
Only then can we go all the way
all the way

[CHORUS 2]
And have you seen
how the cars
when they pass
They come your way
Then they're speeding away
Coming to you and
then going away
But for them nothing's changed,
for them nothings changed

Oooooooo, ooooooooo


Lyrics submitted by dosedxbyyou, edited by FistMountain

The Will to Death song meanings
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29 Comments

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  • +4
    General Comment"Have you put them aside
    Your crazy thoughts and dreams
    No they're a part of me
    And they all mean one thing"

    That verse keeps is what keeps me going every day. I believe a "will to death" is the concept of living life to the fullest, where death is always "one step away".
    The last verse about the cars makes the analogy that people that pass you by at high speed in life - are like cars that don't notice a thing but the road. This verse dabbles a bit on relativity.
    Darth Eddie Vaderon May 04, 2007   Link
  • +2
    General CommentI love this song. It definitely has the same philosophical vibe as the majority of the album. I really like the last verse - it's such an obvious concept but Frusciante definitely adds something to it.
    scarletstarleton April 04, 2005   Link
  • +2
    General CommentI like the contrast between this song and the first one on the album where he says: "You never set a limit" and "Don't ever set a limit" A change has certainly taken place between those two songs as he now says "Limitations are set / only then can we go all the way."
    paranoid schizoidon February 15, 2008   Link
  • +1
    General CommentImo, ist's about how you`ll be able to get away from thoughts evoked from (by? sorry: i'm german) depression.
    Knowing the pattern of their (the thoughts!)destructive work is a good precondition to defeat them and to circumvent their cruel mind by invertion of their original intention.
    Toololon October 19, 2006   Link
  • +1
    General CommentAm I the only one who gets the picture of angels?
    The song is all about the will to death and Frusciante speaks of things that people think are lies but he has seen them. Also he says they are formless and beat pain, but I don't know its just what the song conjures for me I guess
    xxamyhillxxon March 27, 2007   Link
  • +1
    General CommentOne of my favorite songs.

    I know what it means but it's so hard to say...

    I honestly think it better to not try, you can't do better than John. He's the man.
    Jessematon June 23, 2007   Link
  • +1
    General CommentI love Frusciante's work. i love to take his songs and interpret them in my own way and how they aply to my life. good feeling =D especialy love this one. respect to all Fru fans
    Eamo420on November 24, 2008   Link
  • +1
    General CommentOK, this song, as far as just the title goes, is about, of course, 'the will to death'. TWTD is what John came to call the spirits in his head that made him do all the drugs he did and quite the chili peppers from '92-'97. As for the song itself, it's kinda tricky and very subjective as John is notoriously esoteric. 'they're thought to be lies', is, presumably the spirits and whta they told him to do. 'We looked right in their eyes/ right at them' is, again most likely, the time when John came to his senses and cleaned himself up, seeing the error of how he had been living the past 5/6 years of his life. 'they run out of gas'- possibly how they ceased to be negative and became positive, as John says he still has these spirits in his head, about 250/400 of them depending on which interview you hear with him. 'Have you put them aside/ your crazy thoughts and dreams. No they're a part of me'. Put aside his crazy thoughts and dreams of being in the peppers and getting laid all the time and hetting high etc etc. John consistantly states that he doesn't regret his past as such as it brought him to where he is today but he does not like it and is not proud of some of the things he has done. His mindset in the late 80's/ early 90's will always be part of him, yes, but they all mean one thing- they culminated in 'the will to death' as all of the drugs and women and fame lead to his quitting the band and all that bad stuff. There is a definite theme of coming and going and instabillity in the lyrics as death is 'one step away'. This theme is not one made explicit through words but it is present,hopefully you can sense it.
    Johnfrusciante2112on July 26, 2009   Link
  • +1
    General CommentQuoted from John Frusciante himself:

    "The phrase The Will To Death refers to the underlying, predominantly unintentional, organization in works by artists who love and are devoted to the creative force, but hate what they see of the life force and its ways. It is a set of abstract principles which may be applied in the creative act. In artistic symbolism, one comes close to death, and not only does he not die, but he lives more fully for having had the experience. It may be conceived as a set of musical/mathematical formulae which the musician utilizes without knowing it."

    here's the rest of the entry: johnfrusciante.com/article/…

    I'm guessing this song/album must be about this. Even though his lyrics are hard to understand at times and so is the link, I've noticed his songs have a lot of meaning behind them. Very spiritual. Very Buddhist in particular.
    bensomy21on April 23, 2014   Link
  • +1
    General Comment''And they're thought to be lies
    But we saw them, saw them
    We looked right in their eyes
    Right at them, at them''

    He looks at his dark side, his unconscious, and sees how every self supressed aspect is lying to himself..trying the hide.
    He was trying to face himself anyway and looked at ''them'' (fragmented pieces of himself).

    ''Pinning space to the world
    We slaughtered, slaughtered
    Not a sound to be heard
    We're awful, awful''

    He is trying to get rid of his lower self or his uncontrollable thoughts and ''slaughtered''. Trying to make space.. Basically he just hated himself or that part of his personality and longed for.. something like Nirvana (echo death/enlightenment)

    ''And have you seen
    How they run
    Out of gas
    They beat the pain
    They sing in the rain
    Endless and formless
    They fly to the end
    And back to the
    Beginning again''

    Looking at himself more and more he sees his lower selves running out of gas (lacking power to act) and they beat the pain which means they become more accepted (even when it rains they're still singing).
    He is integrating his dark side with acceptance.
    This becomes an neverending repetition of development because you are never sure if you completely know yourself let alone your dark side. (Endless, formless to the end and back to the beginning again)

    ''Have you put them aside
    Your crazy thoughts and dreams
    No they're a part of me
    And they all mean one thing''

    Becoming free from his suppressed and wounded self he experiences possibilities which until then were unseen.
    The journey hes traveling is endless though completed when he is dead.

    I hope make English is clear.
    Morwormon September 27, 2014   Link

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