The Syrian Civil War has all but disappeared from our news as the American attention-span ran out. We are now more concerned about our healthcare woes than anything else going on outside of the country. Regardless of our attention, the war still rages on. It has claimed at least 120,000 lives and thousands more are in prison, likely enduring torture.
The London-based dark-pop duo, Ooberfuse, is bringing attention to just one of those 120,000 deaths in their recently released song “Hidden Light.” Initially, I admit, their song turned me off. With my background in chaplaincy, I initially found their message of hope and an inner light to be insensitive. I know if I went into a hospital room where someone was dying and talked about how “a broken heart can lead to a new dawn,” I would be kicked out. Sometimes when people are in pain, the last thing they want to hear is a sermon on hope. Sometimes the only thing you can do is to truly listen to their cries for help.
Then, I listened to it a couple more times. I looked the band up and listened to some of their other work. A song called “Rescue” about human trafficking. “Blood Cries Out” about a modern-day martyr in Pakistan. “Turn The Tide” about an 11-year-old arrested on charges of blasphemy. They performed at World Youth Day in 2011. Their song “Heart’s Cry” features quotes from Pope Benedict XVI.
They perform a song, “Credo,” putting the Nicene Creed in Latin to dance-pop music. Yes, you read that correctly: the Nicene Creed…in latin…in a dance-pop song. If you are like me, you figure it would either be the most awesome thing ever or the most blasphemous song in the world. I can tell you, it’s done very reverently and it is pretty cool.
Ooberfuse is a combination of two words. Oober, or über, means “over, above, super” and “beyond imagination.” Fuse means to blend. This band fuses eastern music, western music, the newest technology and their ancient faith to create their own unique sound.
So, let’s revisit “Hidden Light” in the big picture. Sometimes it’s appropriate to talk about hope, especially when the suffering has been continuous for 2 and a half years and there appears to be no light at the end of the tunnel. This song is hauntingly beautiful. It reminds me of the fact that God is there through all of the suffering. The Holy Spirit is active in all things. The Spirit is there, even in the bleakest situation. That’s a message we all need, even if we don’t live in the middle of a battlefield.
As an activist, I can appreciate their use of music to bring attention to important issues. We need to remember that even when our news turns away, the struggles, the wars, the starvation doesn’t end. We need to keep Syria in our prayers. St. Barbara, patron saint of Syria, pray for us.
Below is the official music video for “Hidden Light.” For more information about the band: http://www.ooberfuse.com/>Ooberfuse.