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Richard Wagner

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Author Topic: Richard Wagner  (Read 1911 times)
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« Reply #30 on: July 26, 2007, 10:11:04 pm »




Above: Wagner sketched by Paul Joukowsky while playing the piano on 12 February 1883.


  the end of Parsifal we see the arrival of a new king, a new temporal and spiritual leader, who commands that the Grail shall be uncovered -- and never covered again. The community will be re-established and it will turn outward. He brings with him a woman, Kundry, who enters the sanctuary as the first woman ever to do so. This is one of the ideas that Parsifal absorbed from the unfinished drama Die Sieger. Just as the Buddha, in the third act of Die Sieger, decided to admit a woman (the first of many) to his religious community, Parsifal does the same. The fact that Kundry dies in the sanctuary (which is an idea found in Indian traditions) does not reduced the importance of this act. It is also symbolized (at one of several levels of symbolism) by the reunion of the masculine symbol of the Spear and the feminine symbol of the Grail. This is no longer a sterile domain where masculine values are the only values. The eternal feminine has entered the domain of the Grail, where it will remain as long as the feminine symbol, the Grail, remains uncovered. The Grail community has become inclusive: a community that is one and undivided, as Wagner consistently argued that mankind had to be.

n his last years Wagner slowly resigned himself to the fact that he would not live to finish Die Sieger. His creative powers were beginning to fade as he struggled to finish the orchestration of Parsifal. He gave Cosima an excuse for not working on Die Sieger: in Parsifal, he said, he had expressed his idea of a community. It is not, as Gutman assumed, the community turned in on itself, the exclusive community, that was his ideal but the regenerated community that begins to appear in the closing minutes of the drama. A community in which there are both men and women, both masculine and feminine values. A community that has turned outward, never to close in on itself again. An open community in which there is compassion for all, both for those within the community and for those outside it.


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