Exploring How Hermann Hesse’s DEMIAN Connects to BTS (방탄소년단) | Part 2

Exploring How Hermann Hesse’s DEMIAN Connects to BTS (방탄소년단) | Part 2

Welcome to Part 2 of exploring how Hermann Hesse’s Demian connects to BTS! If you missed Part 1, you can click here to read it. If you’ve already read Part 1, let’s get started with this book chat!

 

Chapter Five: The Bird Fights Its Way Out of the Egg

Before we go on discussing the connections I found within this chapter, I need to pause for a bit and analyze Demian’s note for Sinclair: “The bird fights its way out of the egg. The egg is the world. Whoever wants to be born must destroy a world. The bird flies to god. The god is called Abraxas” (73).

This is a pretty popular quote from Demian, and as a result it’s been decoded thoroughly, but at the same time… does this relate to BTS? And if it does, how?

One of the main realizations Sinclair has in the novel is that if he wants to find and truly understand himself, he needs to accept both the positive and negative aspects of his character. In his childhood, when Sinclair steals money to give to Kromer, Sinclair says he wants to have nothing to do with the evil world that was so different than his “world of light” at home with his parents.

Then Demian sweeps in and reveals his belief that the negative and positive aspects of the world — the good and evil — should be combined through the worship of the god Abraxas, “the god who was devil and god in one” (75).

The quote of the bird fighting its way out of the egg could mean different things to different people, but this is what I think it means for Sinclair:

The egg Demian is referring to in this quote is the protective shell Sinclair’s parents had put him in for the majority of Sinclair’s childhood. When Demian says that “[t]he egg is the world,” a key word is stated there: world. Throughout the novel, Sinclair has placed heavy emphasis on his desire to separate the world of innocence and the world of corruption. By saying “[w]hoever wants to be born must destroy a world,” Demian is telling Sinclair that if he wants to find himself — “to be born” — he must destroy his current mentality of desiring to live a life in the “world of light” because that world is a sheltered falsity.

Once he breaks free from that mentality, Sinclair will not be lost. All he needs to do then is fly to the “god…. called Abraxas,” and learn that in order to live a full and understanding life, he will have to be surrounded by both good and evil.

In short, the “[t]he bird fights its way out of the egg” quote encourages individuals to break free from the false notion that everyone can be completely pure and good, for in order to truly understand the world and oneself, everyone needs to accept that good and evil must exist in their life.

This brings up new ideas as to how it relates to BTS — specifically, their music video for “피 땀 눈물 (Blood Sweat & Tears).” In the music video, wings are clearly very important. We have the wings on the statue that Jin kisses; when the members dance in a darkened room with the metal circle of rods dangling above them around 3:21 in the video, there seems to be black paint in the background — which resembles the wings of the crow/raven/bird that has been popping up in paintings and whatnot throughout this music video and the teaser short films; and V is revealed to have his wings clipped near the end of the video.

A popular theory seems to be that the wings symbolize Abraxos, but at the same time, if we look at the earlier quote, Demian says that the “bird flies to [Abraxas],” and what do birds need to be able to fly?

That’s right: wings.

I’ll leave that thought there for now, but I will definitely expand upon it for my specific analyzation of the “피 땀 눈물 (Blood Sweat & Tears)” music video.

#13 Appreciation of Music

I’m sure this doesn’t connect directly to the themes of “피 땀 눈물 (Blood Sweat & Tears),” but I thought this connection was interesting since, despite them being kpop idols and amazing dancers and participating in variety shows, in the end, the members of BTS are all musical artists. Their love and appreciation of music is the main reason why they’re so popular today, as they’re able to translate themes and messages to a broad, worldwide audience through their music.

In the midst of the stage of his life where he wasted away drinking and hangout out at bars, Sinclair finds peace and solace by listening to a man play the organ in a small church.

I had the feeling: The man knows about a buried treasure hidden in this music, and he is wooing and pounding and striving with all his might for this treasure like his life depended on it. I do not understand much about music, in a technical sense, but ever since I was a child I have instinctively understood this expression of the soul, and felt musical things inside me as natural and self-evident. (79)

I thought this was a really beautiful way of showing how resonating music can be, even with those who don’t play an instrument, know music theory, or haven’t studied musical history before. Music is something that so many people can enjoy and connect with, and this quote phrases that idea very eloquently. 😋

#14 Everything Is “Mysteriously Connected”

This connection, I have to admit, was kind of shocking — and it is very very possible that I’m just analyzing it way too much, but…

I can’t just ignore this.

So, BTS’s music videos are each very complex and intricate in terms of their meanings and symbolism and stories and themes, but the aspect of the music videos that can be 1) fun, 2) frustrating, 3) confuzzling, or 4) all of the above is the fact that they all seem to be connected in some way.

In Chapter 5 of Demian, I stumbled across this quote:

 In every piece of music he played, I heard more than the piece itself — it seemed as though everything he played was related, mysteriously connected. (80)

For me, the thing I instantly thought of when I read this quote was that BTS’s music videos are all “related, mysteriously connected” —  the exact way Sinclair had described the organist’s music. I don’t think BTS read this quote and highlighted it in their copy of Demian because they thought all their music was connected to each other too, but it’s still a cool connection between Demian and BTS.

Chapter Six: Jacob Wrestles With the Angel

#15 To Grow Its Wings

This is something I simply cannot ignore:

Our new faith, for which we are choosing the name Abraxas, is a beautiful one, my friend. It is the best we have. But it is still in its infancy! It has not yet grown wings. A lonely religion, alas, is not yet the true one. (90)

The context in which this reference to growing wings appears centers around the development of the religion Pistorius wants to popularize, while BTS’s use of symbolic wings in their music and videos symbolize taking flight into another stage of life, happiness, or dreams.

In the end, the idea is still the same — something in its infancy “has not yet grown wings.” Wings are used in both BTS and Demian as something that helps the thing in its infancy — a person or a thing — fly to and reach a better and/or more successful place. Wings are a catapult, and something that reminds me of a catapult in the “피 땀 눈물 (Blood Sweat & Tears)” music video is actually the slingshot that Jimin has at the intro…

*theories churning up in head right now*

Ahem.

I feel like my head is about to explode right now.

#16 A Different Feeling of Spring

In Part 1 of this book chat, I mentioned how Sinclair equates the feeling of liberty and the end of a dark time in his life to the feeling of springtime. Clearly, that could relate to “봄날 (Spring Day).”

However, in this chapter, Sinclair uses spring to explain very different moods and emotions.

Then I heard a dark, heavy roaring like that of a spring downpour, and I trembled with an indescribable new feeling of fear and experience. (96)

This is so interesting because many people often think of spring as the end of winter — spring is often used to indicate renewal, hope, and love. However, spring is also a heavy raining season, and sometimes the springtime rainstorms can be vicious and slightly frightening.

I should take this rarer symbolic use of springtime into account when I decode BTS’s songs because this use of spring could further expand on the theme that the world must and does contain the two extremes of good and evil, which a the main theme in both Demian and “피 땀 눈물 (Blood Sweat & Tears).”

#17 Painting on Fire

Remember all the things that were set on fire in BTS’s music videos? Okay, you might not remember all those individual objects — but certainly you can remember that paintings were constantly being set on fire.

You remember, right? If you want an example of paintings being set on fire you can watch Jungkook’s short flim for “Begin” — and then there’s also painting of the bird being set on fire (I think it was in “피 땀 눈물 (Blood Sweat & Tears)”?), to name another example.

In Demian, Sinclair wakes up and realizes that his painting of Demian/himself had disappeared.

I looked for the picture, but it was not on the wall anymore — not on the table either. Then I thought I dimly recalled having burned it. Or was it a dream? That I had held it in my hands as it burned, and eaten the ashes? (96)

So first of all, Sinclair mentions how he might have set his painting on fire, which is a clear connection to BTS’s music videos and especially Jungkook’s short film. However, there’s more to just the act of Sinclair setting the painting on fire — what exactly does the painting represent?

When I first read about Sinclair’s painting, I always assumed it was Demian’s face that Sinclair drew. However, now that I’m going back and rereading parts for this book chat, it’s becoming clear to me that the painting might not just be of Demian.

It was a face like the earlier face; it was like my friend Demian’s, and in some features like my own face too. (95)

Demian is a very unique character in the book. He is, in many ways, Sinclair’s mentor — Demian was the one who first led Sinclair onto the path to finding himself, which we know is a very important plot thread of Demian. However, it is possible that Demian isn’t an actual character in the book. He might just be an extension of Sinclair’s imagination. After all, Demian says that only Sinclair can find himself, and if Demian was an extension of Sinclair, then it would make sense how closely Demian was able to follow Sinclair in his path to himself.

This idea hit me when I read about how Sinclair saw his painting of Demian:

Finally, obeying a powerful inner command, I closed my eyes and I saw the image within me, stronger and more powerful than ever. I wanted to kneel down before it, but it was so much a part of me that I could no longer distinguish it from myself. It was as though it had become entirely I. (96)

Perhaps Sinclair’s discovery that his supposed painting of Demian was actually himself is a clue that Demian is just a character from Sinclair’s imagination. If we jump ahead to the end of the book, the concluding sentence is this:

But sometimes, when I find the key and climb fully down into myself, where the images of destiny slumber in their dark mirror, I need only bend down over the black mirror and I see my own image, which now looks exactly like Him, Him, my friend and my guide. (135)

Though “Him” is capitalized in this sentence, I do not think Sinclair is referring to God — instead, Sinclair is referring to Demian, his “friend and [his] guide.” However, Sinclair now acknowledges that his “own image” is the one that looks like Demian, which suggests that Demian is in fact Sinclair. Sinclair realizes this by the end of the book, and by referring to himself (as well as Demian, who is an extension of himself) as capital “Him,” Sinclair is stating that he now views himself as something divine and worship-worthy, more so, perhaps, than a religious figure will ever be for him.

Remember, Hesse had a lot of commentary on how people view religions in this novel, which was influenced by the fact that Hesse “was the son and grandson of a family of strict Pietist missionaries, a heritage that affected him deeply throughout his life” (Background Information Page in Demian). Hesse-as-Pistorius scoffs as how “religion is practiced as though it weren’t a religion at all. It pretends to be a construction of reason” (90).

Keeping this in mind, Sinclair’s decision to call himself “Him” indicates how he has finally found his own worth, and that no external force can make himself see himself as someone lesser in comparison to another ever again.

Okay, now back to the discussion about the meaning of the painting — my thought is that the painting Jungkook has might be of himself — or his Demian, I suppose. However, if it is accurate that the painting is actually of Suga…

Oh my goodness.

OMG.

I JUST REALIZED SOMETHING.

You know how there are pairings in BTS’s music videos??!?!?! GUESS WHO JUNGKOOK IS PAIRED WITH. 

YES, YES YOU’RE RIGHT.

JUNGKOOK IS PAIRED WITH SUGA. 

So if Jungkook’s painting is of Suga, could it be possible that Suga is Jungkook’s Demian, AKA extension of himself? And since Jungkook’s painting of Suga suddenly catches on fire, could it be that Jungkook doesn’t want to listen to Suga, his Demian/mentor, when Suga tries to lead Jungkook on the path to finding himself and accepting that there is good and evil in the world? We see that Jungkook is shaking his head and in clear distress as he watches his painting catch on fire…

😱 Gaaaah this changes everything because now I’m going to view the music videos in a whole different light!!!

So yup — that’s what I have to say about paintings catching on fire in Demian and BTS’s music videos — for now.

 

Chapter Seven: Eve

#18 What Happens on the Train

Okay, here’s a calmer connection. When trains are first mentioned, Sinclair is in a lost-like state of mind. His only goal was to find this woman he named Beatrice that he momentarily glimpsed before, whom he later realizes his Demian’s mother, Eve. Sinclair mentions how he “was never able to fall asleep — at most [he] nodded off for fifteen minutes during train rides through unfamiliar landscapes” (107).

In the next paragraph, Sinclair states how “[o]nce, at a train station in Innsbruck I think it was, I saw a shape through the window of a departing train that reminded me of her, and I was miserable for days. Suddenly the shape appeared to me again at night, in a dream, and I woke up feeling ashamed and empty, convinced of the senselessness of my hunt. I took the next train straight home” (107).

Remember how Jungkook stares out the window of the train in BTS’s music video for “봄날 (Spring Day)”? When Sinclair is on the train, he’s searching for someone. Perhaps Jungkook is searching for someone, or had failed in his search for someone, and that’s the emotion/mood/story the music video is trying to convey. Either way, this small connection will probably help with my decoding of “봄날 (Spring Day)” later on.

#19 Loss of One’s Childhood

BTS’s concept and story of youth being the most beautiful moment in life is really inspiring, but there’s the question of whether life after youth can still have beautiful moments. In Demian, Sinclair had once thought “that losing the glittering colors of the world inevitably went along with the loss of childhood, and that to a certain extent you had to pay for the freedom and manhood of the soul by renouncing that beloved shimmer” (112).

However, Sinclair realizes that he can still be happy after stepping out of his childhood “world of light” into the vast where, where good and evil mingle today on a daily, unavoidable basis.

Now, enchanted, I saw that it had all merely been overshadowed and covered up, and that it was possible, even as a free man who had renounced childhood happiness, to see the world aglow and feel the heartfelt quiver of childlike vision. (112)

I find this quote very inspiring because instead of the end of childhood being the corresponding end of happiness, as Sinclair had believed in earlier in the novel, Sinclair learns that happiness is possible at every stage in one’s life. BTS constantly emphasizes how they believe in being happy throughout the difficult times of youth. Rap Monster (yes, I am going to use one of his deep quotes) said at one of his concerts that “you can think that happiness is not something you have to achieve. You can still feel happy during the process of achieving something” (Source).

I’m going to momentarily pull the topic from Demian to me, because I really love Rap Monster’s above quote. In a way, his quote could relate to me and the time I spend working on this blog. Yes, I’m currently writing with the knowledge that only a few people will read this now, but while I’m still working towards having a larger audience, I’m always happy while working on my blog. In fact, I’m extremely happy and excited to be writing this right now. Though we might have bigger goals that can only be achieved much later in our lives, it’s nice to just live in the moment and be happy with what we currently have.

That entire concept of youth and happiness is why I love BTS’s music so much. 😊

 

Chapter Eight: The Beginning of the End

Ready for the last connection of this book chat?

*drumroll please*

#20 What a Butterfly Does

The summer weeks passes quickly and easily; the fall semester was already near. I was about to leave, I couldn’t think about it — and I didn’t think about it, instead I clung to these beautiful days like a butterfly to the honey clover. This had been my time of happiness, the first time in my life I had found fulfillment and been welcomed into a group of like-minded individuals. What would come next? I would carry on struggling, longing, dreaming, being alone. (129)

One word should have glared out at everyone in the midst of that quote: butterfly. BTS has a song named “Butterfly.” Butterflies constantly appear in their music videos (which may or not not relate to the idea of wings), and there’s a theory that the butterfly effect might have a role in the stories of BTS’s music videos.

I wish I could devise a clear connection/theory for butterflies within BTS’s music videos right now, but my brain is currently fried from writing this book chat, and I think it’s probably best for me to leave it to future-moi to analyze what this connection means.

If you’ve read ’til the end, yay! Tell me in the comments below what you thought about these connections, and what your possible theories are. Oh, and if you missed Part 1, then check it out here.

Thanks for reading, and I will cya next time! Byeeee! 🤗

~Zoie  😄

 

 

 

Want to Read More?

   ‍

If you like this post, then read…

   ‍

this post on an amazing book by Maurene Goo about K-dramas + Korean culture,

or this post on thoughts about dreams and growing up!

There’s also another post on what languages I speak + want to learn (including Korean!),

and here’s my start of drawing more Asian characters for diversity.

   ‍

If you want more BTS, then here’s a list of posts for that:

   ‍

Watercolor of Suga 🎨 In Which I Learn to Draw Eyebrows Before Hair!

BTS Fanart | Rap Monster

BTS “I NEED U” (Original Version) Music Video Analysis

How the Short Story “Omelas” Relates to “Spring Day”

Ten Life Lessons from DEMIAN by Hermann Hesse

Why Is Kpop So Appealing 🤔?

YOU NEVER WALK ALONE (BTS) Album Review | 😍😍😍

   ‍

Enjoy!



10 thoughts on “Exploring How Hermann Hesse’s DEMIAN Connects to BTS (방탄소년단) | Part 2”

  • Hello! I love your blog and I wanted to let you know something I think you might enjoy to hear 🙂
    I am using this book chat series( among a few other of your posts) in my final report for my college Sociology class. I find that your analysis and intricate detail in their connections between the book and the MVs helped me incredibly! I am doing a report on BTS and their work, and how it relates to the Sociological Theory of Symbolic Interaction. This series was an amazing look into not only the book but the music and art from BTS as well. Again, thank you so much, I hope you have a great rest of the day!

    ~Sincerely,
    Another Struggling Army in College

    • Hi Beth! 🤗 Wow I’m glad to hear my posts could help you with your college class 😄 Your report sounds really interesting — I love how you connected sociology with BTS, that’s amazing! Please do remember to cite my posts in your works cited, and best of luck with your report! 😋

    • No part 3, sorry — only two posts on how Demian relates to BTS on this blog. 😊 You can check out other related posts on BTS by going to the Music category though!

  • Hello! I just want to say that your analysis is one of most comprehensive, mind-blowing, and well-put together that I’ve read, and you got the whole book really covered (It’s amazing! Daebak.). Btw, I’m also a BTS fan, and I love their music because they have a purpose, a message. I don’t know how but they were able to put into words the thoughts and feelings I have from my personal experiences. Another thing is that they like to keep their fans reading and thinking. Maybe that’s why we’re here haha.

    So… after reading Demian, watching their MVs (I believe those concerned are I Need U, Butterfly Prologue, Run, BST?), and thanks to tons of theories, I’ve decided to also give it a try. I ‘m convinced that rather than Demian, the whole plot revolves around Sinclair and his growth, first breaking away from his “egg” (the sheltered life under his the security and love of his parents), and second, growing wings for his flight (I think that wings, in a literal sense, are very important to birds if they want to survive the world beyond the egg and their nest; in the same way Sinclair has to develop himself a pair of wings in his conquest of finding himself as a part of the world). What makes it complicated for us is how to put the stories of the 7 boys in parallel with Sinclair’s. So far, I’m convinced that:
    1. All 7 boys are Sinclair, only embodying the different stages of his transformations after certain trials or event:.
    Jungkook: the weak, innocent, uncorrupted Sinclair
    Jimin: the Sinclair that lied about stealing the apples
    V: the Sinclair that is made aware of his potential “evil” side (I’m also thinking if he actually killed his father; nonetheless, he was aware of the Cain in him)
    Suga: the fanatic, madly in love Sinclair
    RapMonster: the Sinclair that gave in to vices (Too many evidences to support: the smoke, chalice of green liquid, lustful thoughts)
    J-Hope: the Sinclair who suffered from anxiety due the Kromer’s bullying (notice in his short film MAMA, he was portrayed as sick, mentally that is, and it is written in the doctor’s pad “Munchausen syndrome”. It is when a patient shows signs of being sick, tho in reality is not. Remember that Sinclair, before being considered “mad” and “possessed” by his own family, experienced vomiting and feeling slightly sick due to anxiety. This was the time when his mother offered his chocolate, and in his short film, he took it.)
    Jin: He is the Ego. The personification of the conscious and subconscious. He is Sinclair and Demian.

    2. Yes, I also believe that Demian is not another character but the extension of Sinclair’s subconscious, his thoughts and fears and realizations of the world that did not reach his awareness. I noticed this when he met Demian only after his first crisis, when he began to have a “real” connection and having these personal experiences. He started to think for himself and question what he was taught. First character to come in mind? Eve. The one whose eyes were opened after making a decision for herself and ate the forbidden fruit. And Demian was said to have feminine features. So I think it could be thought like that. Demian is the part of Sinclair that was awakened, but not understood, and will remain as a separate entity until Sinclair become one with Demian’s beliefs. I also agree that after Jin kissed the statue, the cracking of the statue and the Pieta meant the shattering of worlds that he once needed, the fulfillment of the two goals, breaking from egg, and acquisition of wings (being aware of his subconscious and thus knowing more about oneself)

    3. The set of music videos. I’ve been pondering about these for so long. There are recurring items and each seem to be consistently linked to a certain member, although the pairings are not. During HYYH, V is paired with Rapmonster, Jungkook with Suga, Jimin with Jhope. In Wings, V is with J-Hope, Jungkook with Rapmonster, and Jimin with Suga. However, we can still see that the items associated with each member and somehow their relationship with their former pairs still persist. I’m thinking, what if the two eras were two ways, or platform, how to present the relationships of Sinclair during the different stages of his life? For HYYH, Sinclair and his saviors, and for Wings, Sinclair and his tempters. As you can see, they only revealed what the boy met at the start of Wings Era. Boy Meets Evil. While all of them are Sinclair individually, when they come in pairs, the hyung line (RM, Suga, Jhope) roles changes in relation to the maknae line (Jungkook, V, Jimin). For both Eras the maknae line remained the vulnerable Sinclair, the hyung line changes to Saviors in HYYH, and Tempters in Wings.
    Now how do I explain this? HUHU. I’d gladly expain (it really is an incomplete theory, particularly on Jhope) if anyone asks hahah. But for a fast example: Suga is Pistorius (with the fire and piano). Suga is the savior of Jungkook and tempter of jimin (refer to pairings above). Jungkook, in many pictures in Wings, was seen with a lollipop. We would think that the lollilop signified childhood, but in the I Need U MV the lollipop was revealed to be cigarette. Thus, Jungkook now in wings represented Sinclair who was tempted into vices by RM (who played as his tempter in wings! We see this very well in BST japanese MV). We can remember that he was in that tempted state when he came across Pistorius, the one who saved him, and further introduced Abraxas to him by night of viewing fire. Also remember in the I need U MV, Jungkook was lying his head on the lap of Suga, indicating his relying relationship with him, as they watch the fire together with the members. Suga was then playing with his lighter, and what did Jungkook do? He blew out the flame. Like how Sinclair blew the flame in Pistorius soul when he said his dreams consist of antiquarian ideas, making him realize that he was not ready to actualize his dreams, shattering his faith of acquiring his “first love”. In relation to the short MVs, this you mentioned about the “whistle” and it’s presence in Beign and First Love. I think what it represents is fear, going back to his days as a little boy as induced by Kromer. The whistle was at the tune of Begin, and was heard twice during First Love: while he was playing the piano, and the second after the car crashed it. I’d like to think that the first whistle induced Jungkook’s fear, which lead to Suga rush out for help, and the second is his own fear, seeing his “first love” consumed in flames.
    There’s a lot that I wanted to share, but until I fill in the gaps in my mind, I’m be ashamed to write more. Particularly interesting are the connections between V and Jin, as I think they have special connection, and as well as the role of Jhope (it’s really all over the place for me). So so so sorry for the long comment, it’s just I was inspired by your theories and somehow my gears then started turning and wanted to share some of mine 😀

    P.S. This is the first time I’ve written and shared my thoughts about this anywhere. It actually kinda feels good to think about sharing your theories, even just the thought of sharing it 🙂

    • 😄 Yay another BTS fan! 👋 Thanks for leaving such an extensive and eloquent comment!

      Your first point about all the members of BTS symbolizing different parts of Sinclair’s stages makes a lot of sense, especially with the evidence you pulled from the book and the music videos. My jaw dropped, though, when I read about your description for Jimin: “the Sinclair that lied about stealing the apples.”

      How did I not realize this connection before?!?!? 😱😱 Before reading your comment, I was always puzzled by why Jimin always appeared to be associated with apples. In the short film for “Lie” and in the Japanese version mv for “Blood Sweat & Tears,” Jimin is shown to eat an apple, while he just holds one in the Korean version of “Blood Sweat & Tears.” If apples are associated with Sinclair’s feelings of guilt and regret in Demian, perhaps apples could symbolize the same thing in BTS’s music videos? Something else I noticed in the “Blood Sweat & Tears” music video is that at 2:33, the scene where all the members are sitting at a table resembling the tea party scene of Alice in Wonderland, on each of the members’ plates, there is a red apple. What would that mean in relation to Jimin if Jimin represents Sinclair when he lied about stealing apples? Perhaps that this particular stage of Sinclair, despite being in the past, will always be remembered by Sinclair? That it’s something he cannot get rid of no matter how hard he tries? After all, since the apples are on plates, it appears like the members are feasting (AKA remembering/refreshing themselves) on the memory.

      Another similar theory I’ve heard of from a friend is that all seven members represent an individual character from Demian, e.g. Jin as Sinclair, Suga as Pistorius (since Pistorius is the organist in Demian and Suga is a pianist), J-Hope as Eva (since he is associated so much with the picture of the mother and child that says “EVA” on bottom right corner, especially in the short film for “MAMA”), etc., so that could also be an option — but tbh, it really just depends on how you look at the music video. 😊

      In response to your third point regarding the member pairings, I never knew the member pairings in Wings changed — I thought they stayed the same as the pairings from the HYYH era. What you said about how “for both eras the maknae line remained the vulnerable Sinclair, the hyung line changes to Saviors in HYYH, and Tempters in Wings” was really interesting because I never thought about it that particular way. I’m starting my mv analysis from the very beginning of BTS’s HYYH era, so I haven’t gotten around to analyzing the Wings era mv in detail yet, but I’m definitely going to keep your theory in mind as I analyze. 😊👍

      But really, same — my thoughts regarding the meaning of BTS’s mvs and how they all connect are also all over the place for me. 😅 Thanks for sharing your theories, and hopefully all of these tidbits will connect and make sense in the future as one full, comprehensive explanation for BTS’s mvs! 😋

  • “So if Jungkook’s painting is of Suga, could it be possible that Suga is Jungkook’s Demian, AKA extension of himself? And since Jungkook’s painting of Suga suddenly catches on fire, could it be that Jungkook doesn’t want to listen to Suga, his Demian/mentor, when Suga tries to lead Jungkook on the path to finding himself and accepting that there is good and evil in the world?”

    OMG This gave me goosebumps! You are amazing! This is what happens in the Japanese ver. of Blood, Sweat and Tears music video. Jungkook pushes away Suga when he comes to him as Jungkook is being sick in the washroom! My mouth literally fell open when I read that. That was so cool how you deduced that! Haha! Can’t wait to read more!

    • 😆😆😆 Thank you so much!

      And you’re totally right — Suga does push Jungkook away in the Japanese version! 😱 I’m still puzzled over what the music video for the Japanese version of “Blood Sweat & Tears” means and how it expands on the original “Blood Sweat & Tears” mv, so thanks for pointing out that connection! 😄

  • I love BTS’s music, too! I found your analysis of their music videos quite insightful! 🙂 I have a few (VERY undeveloped) theories, too:

    1. Since “Him” is often used to refer to a deity, the “Him” in the concluding sentence of Demian could refer to the god Abraxas. However, Sinclair mentions how this “Him” was his friend and guide, which means that Abraxas is Demian.
    2. Demian is compared to a marble statue, and in the music video for “Blood Sweat and Tears”, Jin’s face cracks like a marble statue’s. So . . . Jin is BTS’s Demian!
    3. Jin’s death is what nearly forces the other members of BTS to enter the adult world, but Rap Monster’s quote in “Blood Sweat and Tears” clearly expresses that they do not want to enter the adult world. But—like Demian—Jin is BTS’s link to the adult world. Acknowledging Jin’s death would require maturity and force them to enter the adult world. In “The Ones Who Walk Away From Omelas”, the happiness of the citizens of Omelas rests upon the misery of a single child (Jin), but some (the other members of BTS) are not aware—or don’t want to acknowledge—this sad truth.
    4. However, in the music video for “Spring Day”, Jungkook appears sad and depressed, and at the end is shown to be leaving Omelas in a train. In the story, the ones who do leave Omelas (Jungkook) are those that have discovered the suffering of the single child (Jin). Has Jungkook come to terms with Jin’s death?
    5. The train station in “Spring Day” is abandoned, which suggests that few choose to leave Omelas. Thus, if Jungkook is leaving Omelas, he is venturing through unknown territory, so he will need a guide. You mentioned that when Jungkook is looking out the train window, he could be searching for his “Demian”—Suga—and how Suga could be Jungkook’s mentor or guide. Thus, Jungkook could be searching for Suga to guide him. However, you mentioned that Jungkook looks as if he failed in his search for someone. That would make sense because in the short film for “Begin”, Jungkook burns a painting, which you noted could be symbolic of Jungkook pushing Suga away and not wanting to listen to him. But now that Jungkook needs his mentor once again . . . .
    6. If Jin is Demian and Demian is Abraxas, then . . . Jin is Abraxas! And in section #15, you quoted a few lines from Demian that reveal how Abraxas has not yet grown wings. And in the music video for “Blood Sweat and Tears”, only the marble statue—not Jin—has grown wings. This is probably unrelated, but I thought it was interesting 🙂

    I am VERY behind on my BTS watching, but these are the theories I’ve gathered from my meager education about BTS 🙂

    • This is probably the best comment I have ever read ? I love your theories, Cienna! Thanks so much for reading the entire post! 😋

      For your first theory, I suppose Demian could be Abraxas… but remember my earlier theory of how Demian might be an extension of Sinclair’s mind? In that case, if Abraxas=Demian and Demian=Sinclair, then would Sinclair be…. Abraxas?

      (And wow I just used the transitive property for Demian, Abraxas, and Sinclair — MATH SKILLS)

      I think your theory that Jin could be Demian might be right — it makes sense with all the evidence so far. Are we assuming that all the other members are Sinclair’s then? And if Demian=Sinclair, AREN’T THEY ALL DEMIAN’S AND SINCLAIR’S???

      *faints*

      For your third theory, I’ve actually seen a theory video on YouTube that centers on your idea, so I’ll definitely keep your idea in mind.

      My reaction to your fifth theory: 😱😱😱

      I’m so glad you brought up the Jungkook’s short film, because I feel like so many intricate clues are embedded into those films. Have you watched all the other ones? I feel like you would be able to find so many other clues within all the other short films. 👍😄

      THANKS FOR THE AMAZING THEORIES CIENNA!!! 😄

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