Nothing moves me more than music. Pink Floyd has remained one of my favorite bands.

Comfortably Numb is a great song and too often it’s the aim of people in modern societies. And there are more businesses dedicated to this goal  than you could ever count. This is not a new development in the world, but it is being developed into a fine art with all of the distractions we have now.

Bread and circuses was the term used as far back as 100 AD to describe how a population could be distracted from more important concerns to permit politicians to rise to power. I think it has a much wider applicability to our lives in general. Some people value political engagement, while I am more concerned about soul engagement. Soul engagement is exploring within yourself to become more – become the whole person that lies within, as an oak tree is in the acorn.

Comfortably numb blunts that life force within. For me the song speaks to the sleep that so many of us are in, and often seek, away from the call of our souls – the voice within each one of us.

Hello? Hello? Hello?

Is there anybody in there?
Just nod if you can hear me
Is there anyone at home?
Come on now
I hear you’re feeling down
Well I can ease your pain
Get you on your feet again
I’ll need some information first
Just the basic facts
Can you show me where it hurts?

There is no pain you are receding
A distant ship smoke on the horizon
You are only coming through in waves
Your lips move but I can’t hear what you’re saying
When I was a child I had a fever
My hands felt just like two balloons
Now I’ve got that feeling once again
I can’t explain you would not understand
This is not how I am
I have become comfortably numb

Just a little pinprick
There’ll be no more, ah
But you may feel a little sick
Can you stand up?
I do believe it’s working, good
That’ll keep you going through the show
Come on it’s time to go

There is no pain you are receding
A distant ship, smoke on the horizon
You are only coming through in waves
Your lips move but I can’t hear what you’re saying
When I was a child
I caught a fleeting glimpse
Out of the corner of my eye
I turned to look but it was gone
I cannot put my finger on it now
The child is grown
The dream is gone
I have become comfortably numb

Written by David Jon Gilmour, Roger Waters • Copyright © Warner/Chappell Music, Inc, BMG Rights Management US, LLC, Imagem Music Inc

So the second last line is “The dream is gone”. But here Gilmour and Waters are speaking of the ego’s dream – the dream for the fancy car, or the big house, or the romantic relationship, or the comfortable retirement. That dream often does go amid disappointment and cynicism, but that is just a superficial dream. It can have value and bring satisfaction, but unless it is attached to the deeper meaning that comes from our soul, that dream is empty and it is easily lost because it doesn’t have the firm base beneath it.

Dreams can never “go away”, because they come from a much deeper place within us – our unconscious. Dreams are always speaking to us about what we want and need deep down within us. I think the beauty of this song is that it does point to this depth within us. The song is like a myth or a dream – it speaks a much deeper truth than one might think until one sits with it for a while. Comfortably numb is not the goal of life. It is the band aid that cannot hope to heal the wound. Dreams can heal that wound, but that requires work – individuation – personal evolution.