There is something fascinating about Kanye.
The symbologist Jonathan Pageau says he fits The Fool archetype perfectly.
“If The Fool is the one who turns things upside down, then The Fool is also the one who turns things rightside up,” Pageau analyzes.
In his recent Fox News interview with Tucker Carlson, the artist now known as Ye, admitted that he fell off the narrow path he set out on, going from the visibly present spiritual beginnings of his music career with songs like Jesus Walks to songs like I Am a God and I Love It.
Kanye, no doubt, reached the pinnacle of fame. He once took pleasure in the excesses of that. As it always does, though, it caught up with him. In 2016 and 2018, Kanye suffered his identity crisis. He had gained all one could in the world but lost his connection with God, and so he was feeling empty.
For what shall it profit a man, if he gain the whole world, and suffer the loss of his soul? (Mark 8:36)
In recent years, it seems he has been on a redemption arc, albeit still a shaky one, and is trying to use his influence for good.
Kanye fits The Fool in that he was on the edge of the inverse of good while he was following the modern culture, but with his redemption, he became a force for good in the world.
West has released two Christian albums in the last three years, Jesus is King and Donda. He has stopped cursing in his music. He has held many “Sunday Service” events, which blend sharing the gospel and his musical performances.
Outside of the music industry, Kanye has taken up many conservative Christian values, his enthused support of Trump being the first noticeable sign. He runs many charitable enterprises, such as his Donda school, named after his late mother, and conveys next-level creative ideas, seeking to make the world a better place, while also pursuing those ideas and making them a reality.
“I perform for an audience of one, and that’s God.”
In the Tucker Carlson interview, he spoke out against censorship on social media, corruption in politics, and the shady music and fashion industries.
Gloriously, he assaulted the current culture, calling the media’s promotion of unhealthiness “demonic”, calling out those who wanted the mother of his children to do shameless photoshoots, defending against those who called him a stalker for buying a house so that he could be close to his children, and stating that he prefers not to have atheists work for his company, since they don’t answer to God and instead “answer to everybody else.”
Loudly proclaiming his pro-life values, he told Tucker, and the world, that “there’s more Black babies being aborted than born in New York City at this point.”
Most of these beliefs of his are not new, though they may be more pronounced in recent days. They have been developing in recent years. A poignant moment happened in 2020. As he was running for president, Kanye told a crowd that he had considered aborting his daughter.
Billboard describes the speech:
In his most candid moment, on the subject of abortion, West cried as he revealed: “My mom saved my life. My dad wanted to abort me. My mom saved my life. There would’ve been no Kanye West because my dad was too busy.”
“I almost killed my daughter,” said West as he sobbed.
“In the Bible it says, ‘Thou shall not kill.’ I remember my girlfriend [now wife, Kim Kardashian] called me screaming and crying … she said, ‘I’m pregnant’ … She said she was a pregnant and for one month, and two months, and three months we talked about her not having this child. She had the pills in her hand.”
He set the scene, describing that he was “in the [Paris] apartment where my wife was actually robbed” when “the screen went black and white and God said, ‘If you f — with my vision, I’m gonna f — with yours. And I called my wife, and she said, ‘We’re gonna have this baby.’ I said, ‘We’re gonna have this child.’”
“Even if my wife were to divorce me after this speech,” West said, “she brought North into the world.”
Although Kim Kardashian (who has Coptic roots; see the picture below) seemed to have supported Kanye as he was becoming more and more Christian, sadly, she did divorce Kanye early this year. This moment of bravery and confession partly played a part in that, it is reported.
The fascinating thing about Kanye is that he is himself. For better or worse, there is no filter. He is a visionary and has a radiance rarely seen.
Recently, before he was banned from the platform, Kanye liked a Fox News Instagram post about Shia Labeouf’s very public conversion to Catholicism, which was inspired by the actor playing Saint Padre Pio in a film. It is said by some that Labeouf was “responsible” for West’s eccentric clothing style. Perhaps, Labeouf could also give some inspiration to West to make the jump across the Tiber.
As Kanye was hanging out with conservative pundit Candance Owens last week at a fashion show. [Owen’s husband, social media app Parler CEO, George Farmer, also has developed a strong Catholic faith recently], he wore a “White Lives Matter” t-shirt to make a statement against the Black Lives Matter movement, which he called a “scam.” On the front of that shirt was St Pope John Paul II.
A day or so after that, he posted a picture of his St Therese of Lisieux’s shirt.
His growing conservative values, his connection with Labeouf, and his sporting of Catholic t-shirts lead me to believe that he may be moving toward a conversion. We should all pray for that to happen.
It is us Catholics who know that we have the richest cultural heritage, with our art, music, and spirituality. A person with creative predispositions like Kanye would have no trouble seeing the beauty in our faith.
“(Jesus, walk) God show me the way because the Devil’s tryna break me down (Jesus, walk with me)”