Next on the list of things I’m obsessing about:
This video pulls together three tracks, “Honor Him”, “Elysium” and “Now We Are Free” from the movie “Gladiator.” It’s bittersweet, but somehow celebratory. “Gladiator” is one of my favorite movies ever. I would follow Maximus into Hades if he asked.
These particular pieces were composed by Lisa Gerrard and Klaus Badelt, and Hans Zimmer. The vocals are all Lisa (of Dead Can Dance, who are touring again). Don’t try to understand or translate the lyrics, they’re in a language that Lisa made up and started using around the age of 12, when she would talk to God (technically known as ‘idioglossia’, an idiosyncratic language). I love the idea of this. You have to listen at a heart level, there’s no direct translation into English. This site gives what is apparently a phonetic rendering of the words. I have no idea how accurate it is, but it seems about right. Some of the rest of the soundtrack is classic Hans Zimmer, you can hear foreshadowing of “Pirates of the Caribbean” in one segment, but these three tracks are all Lisa. Has she been called a mystic? I don’t know, but she seems to fit the description. Yes I know the movie came out twelve years ago, but I didn’t obsess about things back then the way I do now. I was reminded of it several months ago when I ran across someone claiming Enya sang it, then I had to know everything (you know how I get).
Idioglossia seems to differ from glossolalia in that it is something children seem to use more than anyone else, not always in context of religion or religious fervor, the way glossolalia is. Glossolalia is also known as the language of angels, or ‘speaking in tongues.’ There’s also something called xenoglossia where someone is able to speak or write a language they never learned by natural means.
I had always associated glossolalia with Charismatic and Pentecostal Christians, I had no idea the phenomenon was so widespread. James Joyce’s book Finnegan’s Wake was written using an idioglossia. No wonder no one can read it. It’s like writing your diary in a secret code and wondering why no one can read it (like Beatrix Potter). Interesting phenomenon among creative people.
Ave atque vale, Maximus.