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John Mayer: Gravity Meaning


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Song Released: 2007

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Gravity Lyrics

Gravity is working against me
And gravity wants to bring me down

Oh I'll never know what makes this man
With all the love that his heart can stand
Dream of ways to throw it all away

Oh Gravity is working against me
And gravity wants to...


    #1 top rated interpretation:
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    Mar 11th 2009 report

    In a concert performed in December 2005, Mayer explained the significance and meaning of the song:
    “ This is the most important song I’ve ever written, it's a time capsule song. I will listen to it every day of my life if I need to. It's honest to God the most important song I’ve ever written in my life, and it has the fewest words. I was in LA, and I was there for the summer, just writing tunes, and I was in the shower. And I don't know where it came from, but it's the damn truth you know, and I just sang, "gravity...is working against me."

    And I just want to say that my full-time job, being—this is true—being a musician is almost a side job to my full-time job of not screwing up. Because the world was devised to be pretty damn even, except for terminal illness, and things that people just absolutely... They're just flukes and they're... You know, I don't know if they're making up for something else way far away that they don't deserve, but it all pretty much evens out.

    And if you're gonna do this thing and get paid, and you know, get a car over the phone, if you're gonna do this stuff, something else is gonna happen that is gonna be a temptation to pull you off of it because the people that don't have that going on, they're hoping for that, cause that makes the world even. That makes them even, it makes you even, and where I am now in my life, I’m on a track where as soon as you get in a room, the room is full of things to take you out of the room. "Now that you've made it, here are a plethora of things you can do to not make it. Here are a... Here's the Out door..." and... It's a fill-in-the-blank you know. It's like mad libs. It's like:

    [puts hand up to ear like a telephone] "Oh hey John, this is [person that plays... person in the room]... Umm, [person's name, famous person's name] wants to meet you, they want to meet at the top of [famous restaurant] umm, they're really into ya, come on down, you know, in [number] minutes"

    and you go... "no." And inside you go... "yeah," but outside you go, "n-n-no." Because those are all ways to take you out. They exist as soon as you get... Even if you're not successful, when you get successful... It's like...

    I got successful when I was 23, and that's a crazy looking arc if you chart it out... And all I gotta do is stay up. And sometimes coming down is something to do, because staying up is really boring. If I go out to a party, most people who ask me to a party ask me there so I can be the famous guy at the party, not so I can meet famous people at the party. I am now... When I’m on a plane from New York to LA or LA to New York, and I go [looking around the room], "there are no famous people on the plane, there's usually always one famous person on a plane from New York to LA..." and I go, "ahh shit that's me!! That's not right!"

    Umm, this is a song about... making sure you still love yourself... making sure you still have your head on, making sure you still say no the way your mom would say no. And I will need it every damn day of my life because it's easier to mess up than it is to stay here.


    #2 top rated interpretation:
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    Sep 24th 2008 report

    I think this song is about our constant struggle with our humanity and the limitations that come with it, whether it be in love or with our other passions (in John's case music and song-writing). He wants to be great or maybe even perfect, but he keeps realizing that it's impossible. In the end, he still yearns to be great but accepts his humanity when he says "just keep me where the light is".


    #3 top rated interpretation:
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    Feb 4th 2014 report

    I think this song is about reality bringing you down. Like, you have a great imagination and huge ambition and you can't stop dreaming, but when you think of it, gravity is always gonna put you down. Gravity is a metaphor for reality, because gravity brings you down and it pulls you away from the sky, and closer to the ground.

  4. anonymous
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    Jul 4th report

    This to me is about self sabotage in love. When you have something good but something in you constantly pushes those things away - 'Dream of ways to throw it all away'.

  5. anonymous
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    Mar 9th 2020 report

    When he says "gravity is working against me" "Gravity wants to bring me down" i think gravity symbolizes the world so i thinke hes tryna say the world is working against me and the world is tryna bring me down. when he saids
    "Oh I'll never know what makes this man
    With all the love that his heart can stand
    Dream of ways to throw it all away"
    i think it means he doesnt know what makes him keep being loving after everything thats happened and him wishing he can throw it all away
    Oh twice as much ain't twice as good
    And can't sustain like a one half could
    It's wanting more
    That's gonna send me to my knees
    You know that saying quality over quantity hes tryna say say no matter how much it is it wont be as good as the original and wanting more is gonna get him begging
    "just keep me where the light is" means i think it means keep me positive keep me hopefull

  6. anonymous
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    May 17th 2017 report

    Gravity is a force that attracts a body to the center of the earth or to another body with a physical mass... Gravity in this case refers to an attraction that one has to someone else while in a relationship, John in this song is talking about the temptation to be unfaithful. The attraction that is drawing him to the other woman is making him have thoughts he cant really understand... How he could wanna throw away the love that he already has, the idea of wanting more that what he is getting from the woman he is with already. How the idea of loving 2 might appear good, though it wont sustain and wont be as good as being with just one, how many men have sucumbed to this temptation and that if he sucumbs as well he will end up having lost the one he trully loves and in turn have to be on his knees begging. And he is pleading to remain faithful and remain with the one he is with, where his future(the light) is.

  7. anonymous
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    Nov 7th 2016 report

    I see this song as a struggle to resolve the compulsive drives in one's life. Overdoing and straying into areas we wish we could avoid. the force pushing us toward what we want but know we will pay the concequencesces. The force seems natural and always there. Like gravity we can't escape it so we bargain with the desires, rationalizing or making excuses but ultimately know they will take us down if we give in. Seeking this escape from our negative desires is what brings most of us to a spritual experience where we find a power greater than ourselves to find relief.

  8. kooljohn176
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    Jan 10th 2016 report

    Another way of saying I don't wanna let go of my first love which may be God. He doesn't want to let go of his innocence and throw it all away like a fool, from the light he feels in His Presence. Especially when young and a little afraid, but as he gets older and putting on the weight of the world that feels the pull of gravity [hell] symbolically speaking to take a chance by a gamble to go all the way in the fall of falling in love with somebody. This could turn out being not necceserly twice as good, or half as good, if not fully thought out in thinking to double the amount of love to what could turn out to be also half of what he has now to gamble on the temptation that feels like gravity is pulling him down towards the fall that he is struggling with and needs help to balance himself within gravity that holds the ''two forces'' together to bring together and not to lose out to either one that are working together to hold them steady in the light of God.

    This interpretation has been marked as poor. view anyway
  9. anonymous
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    Jun 10th 2015 report

    I think it means what ever you are going through at that time in your life. One day it might means something else to you and another day it might be another meaning.
    love this song.

  10. anonymous
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    Mar 18th 2015 report

    This song is about him being at the top. When he wrote this song, he was one of the top artists in the business. The gravity is a metaphor for everyone wanting to take his spot at the top. This is also a metaphor for life, everything pulls you down in its own way and you want to love yourself enough to not let things pull you down. "Gravity is working against me" (things are always pulling you down). "Gravity stay the hell away from me" (loving yourself enough to not let things pull you down).

  11. anonymous
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    Feb 12th 2014 report

    something or some one or someting in life is weighing john down. it it seems he getting a double does of it.that is why he want to be near the light Jesus Christ the one a only light thanks john for this song play it when i need free tome in my mind

  12. anonymous
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    May 28th 2012 report

    He is talking about being in love with two women at the same time. He knows that it is unsustainable but he is being pulled towards it. Gravity is the unrelenting force that is sucking him into the second relationship.

    He is unhappy with his current relationship "as one half could". But he knows that trying to balance he two relationships together will eventually "bring me to my knees".

    He is aware that this is not the right path but he feels compelled to follow. The second relationship is pulling him in and gravity is a metaphor for it. Gravity also implies a natural order. He is consciously fighting against the natural order of things....even though he knows he will eventually be brought back to earth.

  13. anonymous
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    Mar 6th 2012 report

    Gravity is working against me
    And gravity wants to bring me down

    Oh I'll never know what makes this man
    With all the love that his heart can stand
    Dream of ways to throw it all away

    Oh Gravity is working against me
    And gravity wants to bring me down

    Oh twice as much ain't twice as good
    And can't sustain like a one half could
    It's wanting more
    That's gonna send me to my knees

    Oh gravity, stay the hell away from me
    And gravity has taken better men than me (now how can that be?)

    Just keep me where the light is
    Just keep me where the light is
    Just keep me where the light is
    C'mon keep me where the light is
    C'mon keep me where the light is
    Oh... where the light is! [repeat]

    I am not sure what John Mayer is saying here, but I am going to give it a spin...

    We have all heard the phrase, "Shit Happens". I am not saying that I "like" that phrase, but let us suppose that it is true... Also, "Gravity Happens". Gravity can be wonderful, but it can also be so cruel. It has been defined as, "The natural force of attraction between any two massive bodies". It keeps us grounded on earth which can feel very limiting because of man's desire to fly. We all want to soar near the sun. We crave levity when we are in a "grave" or serious state. Naturally, gravity makes it difficult for us to float close to the sun. He is the sunofabitch who makes our chins fall and our bags sag. Many times gravity is not our friend.. like when we fall off the top of a 45 story building. I was a physics major in elementary school and I know you can tell.

    This reminds me of a poem by AE Housman entitled, "Terence, This Is Stupid Stuff". Read it. See what you think. I think Housman and Mayer are telling us that we need to go through the sobering times & the dark, dreary painful poopy experiences in order to rise up and soak in the happier times. The gravitational forces which pull us down are crucial for our character. This means that uniquely brutal & awful things will occur in each of our lives and we must learn, grow and transcend each "shitty" episode in order to become wiser and more fully developed. Gravity is natures way of helping us evolve.

    Housman mentions Mithridates. "Mithridatism is the practice of protecting oneself against a poison by gradually self-administering non-lethal amounts. The word derives from Mithridates VI, the King of Pontus, who so feared being poisoned that he regularly ingested small doses, aiming to develop immunity. Having been defeated by Pompey, legend has it that Mithridates tried to commit suicide using poison but failed because of his immunity and so had to resort to having a mercenary run him through with his sword." When we are practiced at ingesting the terrible things in life, we become more astute. The toxic, poisonous phases will not kill us. We will need to hire a hitman to do the honours and/or we will live a loooong life.

    Mayer and Housman are telling us to prepare. Our brains and hearts are each like a town. They each have a main street, all of the side streets, houses, glitzy restaurants, pretty shops, pubs, rundown porn shops, sleazy scumjob freakjoints & greasy spoons, etc. Some people only visit the nice places and they don't visit the shit nodules. If they took the time to inhabit the spooky, terrorizing establishments, then they would be better prepared for life. Lies, trauma and slithery, scumass reality HAPPENS. These men are simply telling us exactly what Pasteur suggested with his statement, "Chance favours the prepared mind".

    Gravity is not a game of luck or chance. It is bound to occur to each and every one of us. We have the ability to affect our destiny by being prepared. We can put forth effort in order to hope that our lives go in a certain direction. We can change our lives. When we visit all of the scary crevasses and putrid knolls, then we have inhabited our whole heart and our entire mind, HENCEFORTH we are much better able to allow "chance" to favour our prepared mind..

    Perhaps this is what Mayer is trying to tell us. Yes, I am pulling it from my rumpus but at least I am communicating. :)

  14. anonymous
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    Aug 3rd 2011 report

    This song is a chapter in one's life. Gravity is a static, unrelenting force that's always been there since the beginning of life and will never change.
    But "gravity" is a metaphor to something in his life, and in everyone's life.
    [Its cool because when we are young, we dont even know what our gravity is yet]
    "Gravity" is that something in life that we are unhappy with because it brings us down when we think about it. Some people will try and change "their gravity" hoping that replacing the negative energy with positive will change the outcome of their gravity. Others will ignore it and live on allowing gravity to lead them wherever it may. In this chapter of life, Mayer understands the true power of mother nature and is singing about his frustration with gravity because he can't beat it. It even sometimes makes him drive away his loved ones....

    Ultimately, gravity is a great ominous ruthless continuum, that pertains to everyone regardless.

    BUT!!!! love heals. You can't beat gravity, you can only love something/someone until it gets you high. Or smoke weed until it gets you high.... either way gravity will pull you back down. Just figure out how to make that high last as long you can

  15. anonymous
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    May 8th 2011 report

    To me is a song about the struggle of addiction.

  16. anonymous
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    Mar 10th 2011 report

    I find it really cool that even though sometimes artists don't see it they are singing/crying out for the truth of God. NO ONE that is human can escape the fact that we have a hole in our heart/spirit that needs to be filled. A lot of people try to fill it with the things of the world, but no one will find true peace untill they surrender to God and know He is the only one who can supply all your needs. Gravity to me in this song is Satan. Gravity is working against me. Satan is working against me. Gravity wants to bring me down. Satan wants to bring me down. Gravity stay the Hell away from me. Satan stay the Hell away from me. And keep me where the Light is. keep me where Jesus is. Keep me where the light is. I love it. He is spreading Christianity through a simple song like this, just with different words and he doesn't even know it! God gave him a great voice and I love this song! Thanks God for being so great! Praise You :)

  17. anonymous
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    Mar 8th 2011 report

    I believe this song is talking about possibly being with someone, but wanting to be with some one else. For example: "Oh I'll never know what makes this man
    With all the love that his heart can stand
    Dream of ways to throw it all away". Could possibly feel remorse for having a person that loves them but some how they are thinking of someone else. They know its not right but "gravity" meaning another persons charisma always lures him in. "Just keep me the were the light is" meaning keep me on the right path, and not follow his instincts of cheating in a more emotional way.

  18. anonymous
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    Jan 14th 2011 report

    Its about the temptation to cheat. The twice as much that cant sustain him is the other lover. The second woman. He knows that it wont fulfil him as much as his wife/girlfriend can: his other "half." The desire to want more than what he has is analogous to gravity, the strongest force in physics. It pulls him down because he knows its wrong.

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