In today's My Music Motivations, I want to spotlight the song "To the Threshold" by the hardcore/metal band Hatebreed. Don't let the name of the band fool you. These guys, through and through, have created some of the most positive, self-empowerment songs that you could find in any genre.
"To the Threshold" is a song that fires me up to no end, as it is not only about self-empowerment, but it is also about seeking to help empower others. The two-fold nature of this song resonates so powerfully within me. I often do my martial arts training to Hatebreed, and songs like this certainly stoke the flames when I am doing high intensity training and building upon my own self-empowerment and growth in strength.
The song wastes no time in getting at its core themes, in the very first lines:
This is the sound of the lost, beaten and broken,
rising up and claiming what has been taken from us
From the shadows of the past
From the depths of our own failures
Stepping forward into the light
Denying our demise
Decimating all uncertainty
Bowing to only who can place judgement upon me
This song calls to those who have had heartache, loss, setbacks, and been knocked down in life, exhorting them to step out of the shadows of the past and into the light with a determination to fight. The denial of one's demise is at the foundation of rising back up again, embracing the will to keep moving forward and not to quit. Life is not fair and does take from so many of us in a very cruel way, so there are times when we must feel a degree of fury, set our minds, and rise back up again.
All too often those who feel that they are broken and beaten remain mired in such a state. In doing so, they become self-fulfilling prophets, and self-defeating. There is a path back, but we must each decide to take that path and step forward. Deny your demise and decimate uncertainty!
The next lines in the song reflect the other core aspect, that of building up and empowering others, with a very pointed nuance. The person is doing it from a position of strength. They have pushed themselves to the Threshold and now they are in a place where they can lead by example.
Give me your broken
Give me your beaten
I will build them up
I will lead them
To The Threshold
Make you stronger
Make you believe
I am the one in the same
but now stronger than uncertainty
These words encourage someone who has risen back up from hardship and regained strength to show others the path. The words reflect someone who has been in the shoes of the broken and beaten, a person who understands all too well what that is like. But this person has risen up and knows how to grow stronger and believe, and can do that by example, which is certainly one of the most powerful forms of leading others. The willingness to reach out to others and help build others up and guide them in self-empowerment. is a very special aspect of this wonderful song.
Within this army
This is more than a battle - cry
It's the blood of our lifeline
Once you come out of the other side of rising back up, knowing what it takes to grow stronger, the idea of being able to push yourself to the threshold, or limits, is not just a battle cry as the song states. It is a part of who you are, something that flows within your veins. It is, as the song states so well, the blood of one's lifeline.
This is the sound of the lost, beaten and broken
Decimating all fears
Stronger than ever
Beyond every dream
Ascension into supremacy
Now we're stronger than ever
Backed by thundering riffs and rhythm, this section is the battle cry. The ascension into supremacy, to me, is mastering oneself and becoming the strongest and best person that you can be. That's the ultimate supremacy. Stronger than ever and decimating fears as the lyrics say. The lost, beaten and broken renewed, resurrected, and standing taller than ever. I love everything about this section and what it hails.
We were the broken
We were the beaten
I was once like you
Now I push myself to the threshold
Because I am stronger
Because I believe
Now I spit in the face of defeat
Now I'm stronger than all uncertainty
This final section brings everything together and ends the song on an absolute high note. It reflects someone who has risen back up and those that the person has helped, reached out to, and guided, all empowered and stronger than ever before. The absolute defiance of spitting in the face of defeat and the strength to face uncertainty reflects those who are not broken or beaten in any way. It is the description of what a champion is all about, a person who can push themselves to the limits. To the threshold.
No matter what you have been through, believe in yourself. And become stronger than ever. :)