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Twilight of the Gods: Page 965
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in the orchestra, and other orchestral figurations from her original awakening, accompany Siegfried as he describes how he comes to Bruennhilde and kisses her awake once again, breaking the bride’s bonds. We hear his own motif #92 (representing Siegfried as the hero who is fearless because Bruennhilde protects him from wounds) as he sings that Bruennhilde’s joy laughs upon him. As we hear #140, the first of the love-motifs accompanying their love-duet in S.3.3, making us feel now that we have returned to that moment in the drama, Siegfried describes Bruennhilde’s eyes, which he says are now open forever (“Ach, dieses Auge, ewig nun offen!”)! This is no casual remark. By virtue of having betrayed the secret mechanism of his unconscious artistic inspiration (his love for Bruennhilde), and revealed the secret it kept - represented by Alberich’s Ring - to his audience, Siegfried has indeed awakened the unconscious mind, man’s collective unconscious, so that it can never return to sleep and dreaming, never again inspire religious revelation and art. We are reminded that Hagen’s eyes remained permanently open and watchful, like his father Alberich, even in sleep. The fact that Bruennhilde’s eyes are now opened forever means that in a sense she has become indistinguishable from her mother Erda, Mother Nature, as known to man objectively when wearing the Ring of consciousness, so that Bruennhilde can now give voice to Erda’s knowledge.

Now, accompanied by #141 from S.3.3, Siegfried cryptically sums the essence of his life. He sings: “(#141) Sweet-extinction [“Suesses Vergehen”], (#141) blissful terror [“seliges Grauen”]; - Bruennhilde (#87) gives me greeting.” The German word Vergehen conveys a notion of “violation,” or moral transgression, for Siegfried, by unwittingly betraying his oath to Bruennhilde to preserve her sanctity as his unconscious mind, by giving her and her secrets away to his audience, Gunther, violated or – in a sense - raped her, his muse of inspiration, irredeemably. And yet it was only by doing this, by betraying the secret of religious faith and unconsciously inspired art, that Siegfried could attain the apotheosis of ecstasy of which only the highest art is capable. When #141 was introduced in S.3.3 its primary conceptual association was with Bruennhilde’s remark that she is his own self, if he loves her in her bliss, and that what he doesn’t know (#87 – Fate, or Truth), she knows for him. Thus #141 simultaneously conveyed two notions which are opposed to each other. On the one hand #141 could be construed as the motival metaphor for the mystic notion that by deep meditation, or some sort of spiritual enlightenment, the single individual can lose himself in the totality of the world, by – in some sense – identifying himself with it, and thereby renouncing and losing his ego. On the other hand, #141 could represent what I have been suggesting throughout this study, that Siegfried (i.e., Wotan, Siegfried’s prior incarnation) loses his loathsome identity in Bruennhilde only because she, his unconscious mind, holds knowledge of it for him, so that he need not suffer from consciousness of it. It is in this way that Wotan, who has become unbearably conscious of who he is (Dostoevsky called consciousness a disease!), represses knowledge of his true identity in Bruennhilde, and can therefore attain rebirth as Siegfried, who does not know who he is because Bruennhilde knows this for him.

Thus #141 accompanies Siegfried’s perhaps otherwise inexplicable remark: “Sweet extinction (violation).” It was through his confession to Bruennhilde, his repression of self-knowledge into his unconscious mind, that Wotan was able to “go under” and to lose himself, so he could attain rebirth as Siegfried, the hero who is fearless and heroic only because he doesn’t know who he is. As Wotan said of Bruennhilde, when speaking to Erda, Erda’s wisdom wanes before his will (Bruennhilde). #141 accompanies his other cryptic remark: “Blissful terror,” because it was through his unconscious artistic inspiration by his muse Bruennhilde that the artist-hero Siegfried was able

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