“There is a crack in everything, That’s how the light gets in. ” I no longer buy this!

“There is a crack in everything
That’s how the light gets in…”

– Leonard Cohen

I used to take a lot of comfort in these words. I wish I still could, but I have come to believe they are bullshit.

Leonard Cohen fans, don’t bother trying to enlighten me…I have listed to the man sing for 40 years!

But you know what? When it’s broken, it’s broken, how about that? It is not improved so how about let’s not break the thing in the first place, hmm?

I suppose I should tag this “sacrilegious”, but whatever. Facts are facts.

38 thoughts on ““There is a crack in everything, That’s how the light gets in. ” I no longer buy this!”

  1. I totally agree!! “Don’t break it in the first place”. I know that its impossible to fix something that is already broken… I sort of think sacriligiously too… I think that some things are meant to never be fixed and those are the most powerful lessons for people…to learn to walk away. I mean, we aren’t God, we cannot transform energy…people don’t change. Energy stays the same. You have it or you don’t…

  2. Yea, when its broken, its broken, you can’t do anything other then shifting your focus. My relationship is broken, what can I do?? I try to shift my focus. Because i know it will never fix.

  3. Sona, what I’m doing is focusing on taking back my power by thinking about what I need to do to feel *alive* …this takes refocusing your energy and vitality and not letting it get sucked dry by your husband. You have to find your center and stick there…with all of your intent, draw on the energy you have at your center to take small steps toward your goals and your energy will grow and grow…until you have your power back before you know it…

  4. Yeah… Hey fuck you, Leonard Cohen, and your pseudo-optimism and “broken places heal stronger” BS!

    (hahaha Omg love this post)

  5. I am so sick of hearing people (especially people at work) saying “It’ll get better, it’ll get better”. Well, sometimes it does NOT get better. Chew on that. There are times I’ve wished something was allowed to simply burn to the ground. Sometimes that’s the ONLY way it “gets better”!

  6. I’m still with Leonard. I interpret the quote to mean that things are by nature imperfect, and that’s okay. It’s a useful lesson for a Virgo, who will attempt to prevent/repair the serious imperfections anyways.

    Then again, I’ve never heard the whole song. Talk about sacrilegious.

  7. LOL. I’ve never heard this quote.

    When a thing is broken, often the light never gets in. It just stays broken.

    Btw, the mobile version of the site is great. πŸ˜€

  8. “Ring the bells that still can ring
    Forget your perfect offering”
    Always took that to mean, put your work out there regardless of the world and it’s opinions. Human relationships are more complex and can be irretrievably broken, tragic events occur.

    1. Lovely, Virginia. I love Leonard Cohen, and especially love this quote. Even as he asks us to ‘forget the perfect offering, I think he is, in his sly, wise way reminding us that every offering IS perfect…
      As for the light, well, who’s to say what way, shade or form the light will take?

  9. Elsa, do you think this is a Neptune idea? That cracks are how light gets in? I’m so effin confused, but I started thinking about the creative powers of Neptune… Like Neptune “epiphanies”. And I wonder if sometimes things*seem* broken but they never really were. Like the light comes in when Neptune realizes the beauty in what is broken.

    1. Or Neptune realizes things will always be broken and finds beauty in that… Finds beauty in what he has, so he accepts it. Dissolves the perception of what’s “broken”

  10. I know better then to try to argue with you Elsa, but . . . .I was wondering if we are coming up to time to replay the step away from the corpse video πŸ™‚ Sometimes when the light gets in, we can see just how broken it is.

  11. I always though of Leonard Cohen as dark and depressive; not really my cup of tea. But despite, I agree that “a broken cup, is a perfect cup”, and the name of the skill acceptance. Whether that sucks or not is a different question πŸ™‚

  12. I get your point. As for my part I always thought of this quote as another way of adressing the chiron-aspect of human life. Everyone has a wound.

  13. @mermaid, I don’t know. This post is just what it is. I used to take comfort in this concept. I no longer do! πŸ™‚ It’s completely personal.

  14. A cracked thing does not mean a broken thing, it means an imperfect thing, just as every human being is cracked (hurt, wounded). Finding ways of surviving – is how the light gets in.

    I adore Leonard Cohen and I am still comforted by his words.

  15. Elsa, that’s cool..I just start thinking all deep about your posts, lol. I mean I sometimes think about them all day long hehe. But that’s what makes your blog so awesome…cuz you learn so much about yourself πŸ™‚

  16. “What doesn’t kill you makes you stronger”. NO. Sometimes it just makes you weaker and weaker until you succumb. Like the flu turning into pneumonia turning fatal.

    1. Yes! Has anyone ever been told that they were strong, but didn’t feel that way? This applies to me and a few friends of mine. I think it’s passive strength, like “keep on keeping on” VS. an active fight against the odds. In other words, I appear strong and unaffected by life’s demands/circumstances. If someone hurts you, you can choose whether or not to “forgive,” but it’s uncommon to forget. I think the memories store the pain we felt in that moment in time. One (or more) study has shown that the body experiences real & physical pain when we think of a time we were hurt/abandoned. This can develop into conditions such as fibromyalgia. So, you are right-on. What doesn’t kill you slowly creeps into your body, making you susceptible to illness.

  17. My mother once said (as a joke): “I blamed all your adolescent problems on Leonard Cohen”!
    Back then I went to see a friend’s art exhibit with my then boyfriend. The art piece was a lot of broken, cracked and smashed crockery all painted black! My boyfriend said: “I think your friend needs to buy a new dinner set”!
    I don’t listen to Leonard much these days but still like “The Partisan”

  18. Shadow stuff. Sometimes the best you can do is hold people accountable, and accept things, and try to not make it worse. Does not change the fact it may be dark.

  19. I have experienced spriritual contact through the “crack” my wound – loving energy. So there is truth in this..But I donΒ΄t defend suffering at all. I wish there could be another way.

  20. An attempt to explain yin and yang properties of the universe? I have almost always dreaded this one: “when god closes the door, he opens a window.” In other words, you are under house arrest, and (as a caged bird) are able to see all the action outside. Yes, there’s opportunity. And there’s jealousy, regret, and restriction. I do like broken things in art form sometimes, but Cohen’s statement inadvertently speaks to irresponsible people. Like, when a woman (or man) is raped, what of that? That is the first thing I thought of, because the image of the container (the womb) is battered. I believe we store pain in our bodies and we should be encouraged to feel it and not gloss over it. We can release some of the pain through several mind-body interventions and find some relief. The survivor of rape can meet other women like her in support groups and find this so-called light. But the rapist’s actions will not be overgeneralized into the pool of Everything That’s Cracked. I hate to read too much into this, but that’s what art, poety, etc are for! I’ll never know what the writer’s real intent/meaning was, so perhaps I shouldn’t be so hard on him.

  21. I get the meaning of the cracks, and have turned many into art; a path otherwise not taken, and a point of view to allow something not seen.

  22. Avatar

    I never took that lyric as justification for breaking something. I interpreted it more as a supportive statement for people who are too hard on themselves for not being all things at all times.

  23. Avatar

    I wonder how many interpretations there are for this line from Take This Waltz:

    “There’s a concert hall in Vienna
    Where your mouth had a thousand reviews”


  24. Also, that’s not necessarily how the light gets in. There are no cracks in the walls of my house. The light gets in through the windows. Cracks are not intended. Windows are by intention.

  25. We’ve been collectively raised on fairy tales and happily ever afters. It’s difficult to accept that some stuff is irreparably broken. The only thing light does is make it more clear. ?

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