I first heard about moshing from worship lecturer Dr Lim Swee Hong of Trinity Theological College. During his lecture, he mentioned how a certain writer likened what you see in contemporary charismatic worship (particularly the megachurches) to the moshing you see in punk rock concerts. Is contemporary worship in the megachurches borrowing too much from the world? Are they aping popular culture so that the non-Christian will be more comfortable, and attracted to the church? That really got me all curious. So I went to do some research about moshing.
“an activity in which audience members at live music performances aggressively push or slam into each other. Moshing is frequently accompanied by stage diving, crowd surfing, and headbanging. It is commonly associated with concerts by heavy metal, punk rock, and alternative rock artists, although it occurs at performances by musicians of all sorts of genres. Moshing primarily takes place at live shows, though it can be done to recorded music, too. In the 2000s, many variations of moshing exist, such as “thrash”, and the dance is practiced at concerts of many musical genres. Moshing is typically done in an area in front or the stage which is referred to as the mosh pit or circle pit. While moshing is seen as a form of positive feedback or reflection of enjoyment from live audiences, it has also drawn some controversy over its dangerous nature. However, it is generally agreed that moshers are not trying to harm one another and follow a “moshing etiquette” which promotes safety through behaviors such as immediately helping audience members that have fallen back to their feet to avoid their being trampled”.
Then I went to YouTube to get an idea of what it looks like.
And then I compared it with a worship concert done by Hillsong United. Compare them for yourselves. You may think otherwise but I think they are different.
Perhaps moshing is more like what’s in this next video. No offense is meant to moshers. Please do not complain to the police or the ISD. 🙂
(First published in 13th January 2008)