Dis-ease

“Dis-ease” is the 6th track of Be, the BTS album released in November 2020. It was produced and written by j-hope, Ivan Jackson Rosenberg, GHSTLOOP, RM, Pdogg, SUGA, Jimin, Randy Runyon.

A line-by-line translation and explanation follows the clean version. English lyrics are italicised and the stanzas are left as they are in the original. One addition for this album: because so many of the lyrics clearly represent the member that voices them, I’ve made a note of the artist when they sing or rap alone. Here, I’ve concentrated it to the verses.

Clean Translation

j-hope
It feels like I’ve let something pass me by
With a sip of coffee, I swallow my unease 
An endless rest
A discomforting joy that has come to me so suddenly

24 hours, there’s so much time 
Even if I sleep all day, there’s no problem right now
It feels as though I should be doing something to the point my body shatters, 
but I’m just a bastard who eats all three meals
My sin, a dog that rips a resting me apart
Even if I shout “don’t do that”, I’m strangling myself over results
Errday do ma thang, damn if I fail
I keep growling, I tap the rotten rope 
I feel unsettled, this is a disease 
Physical things are a stun given to me by my career

💊  Maybe

It’s because I’m sick 
Blame it on the fact that I think too much
I hate that
A foolish young me, unable to keep things simple 
I’m actually really young, just with the body of an adult 
I’m limping through the walk of life 
One for the laugh, two for the show
Just like I’m so fine 

👟  Everyday, I comfort myself
We’re all just people, ain’t so special

Ay man keep one, two step    
Let’s calmly try to treat everyone
My disease
Di-di-di-di-disease
Throw it away, the fear
Fe-fe-fe-fe-fear 

RM
My heart needs a holiday too
Gosh, just think of work as work
I’m ill, yeah, I’m work itself
That friend called ‘rest’, oh I never liked him
How much do you have to earn to be happy?
This glass-like disease hits your head
I’m confused whether it’s me or the world that’s diseased
Even when I take off my glasses, the darkness doesn’t get misty
Whatever label is stuck to describe this time,
I hope that it’s all you 
Your you, you

SUGA
Everyone has a lot of diseases. What confuses me is
that humans by nature host to things awful;
that the diseases of the heart number over 400
and there aren’t many that don’t fit into a category
Yo, is it me or the world that’s diseased
Is it simply the difference in interpretations
Is that all
I don’t know, faster than changing a person
is changing me

💊

👟 

(Sick  tired)
But I don’t wanna mess up
Cause life goes on
(Through the fire)
I’ll walk it, as who I am, woah
(Walk it, walk it, walk it)
When it turns to night, I want to close my two eyes and
(Walk it, walk it, walk it)
trust the person I know I used to be

Now, stand up, one more time
It’s morning again, I need to live today out
Let’s go, one more night
I don’t know what’ll be at the end of this, ayy

There’s no eternal night
I’ve become stronger
Fireworks burst
I will never fade away

👟

Throw it away, fearfearfear, throw it away


Line-by-Line Translation

뭔가 놓친듯해
It feels like I’ve let something pass me by

커피 한 모금으로 불안함을 해소
With a sip of coffee, I swallow my unease 

An endless rest

내게 갑자기 다가온 불편한 행복
A discomforting joy that has come to me so suddenly

24 hours 시간 참 많아
24 hours, there’s so much time 

하루 종일 잠자도 지금은 no problem
Even if I sleep all day, there’s no problem right now

몸 부서져라 뭘 해야 할 거 같은데
It feels as though I should be doing something to the point my body shatters, 

마냥 삼시 세끼 다 먹는 나란 새끼
but I’m just a bastard who eats all three meals
세끼 and 새끼 are pronounced in the same way, and can also describe a young animal, setting the scene for the next few lines. 

내 죄, 쉬는 내 자신을 물어뜯는 개
My sin, a dog that rips a resting me apart
-게 is a syllable added to a verb to create an adverb, but it’s also pronounced in the same way as 개 (‘dog’). The following lines continue his zoomorphism, describing himself as a dog on a leash.

Don’t do that 외쳐봐도 성과에 목매 매일
Even if I shout “don’t do that”, I’m strangling myself over results
목매다 literally means to hang yourself, and is used metaphorically too, much like in English. 

Errday do ma thang, damn if I fail

계속 으르렁대 썩은 동아줄을 tap
I keep growling, I tap the rotten rope 

불안전해 이건 병
I feel unsettled, this is a disease 

물리적인 건 직업이 주는 stun!
Physical things are a stun given to me by my career

💊  Maybe

내가 아파서 그래
It’s because I’m sick 

생각이 많은 탓
Blame it on the fact that I think too much 

I hate that

 단순하지 못한 치기 어린 나
A foolish young me, unable to keep things simple 

나도 참 어려 몸만 어른
I’m actually really young, just with the body of an adult 

절뚝거려 인생 걸음
I’m limping through the walk of life 

One for the laugh, two for the show

Just like I’m so fine  💊 

👟 Everyday 나를 위로해
Everyday, I comfort myself

다 똑같은 사람이야 ain’t so special
We’re all just people, ain’t so special

Ay man keep one, two step    

차분하게 모두 치료해보자고
Let’s calmly try to treat everyone

나의 병
My disease

벼벼벼벼병
Di-di-di-di-disease

버려 겁
Throw it away, the fear 

거거거거겁
Fe-fe-fe-fe-fear  👟

마음에도 방학이 필요해
My heart needs a holiday too

아 그냥 일은 일로 해
Gosh, just think of work as work

I’m ill, 그래 내가 일 그 자체
I’m ill, yeah, I’m work itself
일, or ‘work’, is pronounced ‘ill’

쉼이란 친구 oh I never liked him
That friend called ‘rest’, oh I never liked him

얼마를 벌어야 행복하겠니?
How much do you have to earn to be happy?

이 유리 같은 병이 때리지 니 머리
This glass-like disease hits your head
병 can mean disease or bottle. Is this supposed to be a wake-up call?

병든 게 세상인지 난지 헷갈려
I’m confused whether it’s me or the world that’s diseased

안경을 벗어도 어둠은 안 흐릿해져
Even when I take off my glasses, the darkness doesn’t get misty

이 시간 뒤에 어떤 라벨이 붙건
Whatever label is stuck to describe this time,

부디 그게 전부 너길 바래
I hope that it’s all you

너의 너, 너
Your you, you

다들 병들이 많아 내가 헷갈리는 건
Everyone has a lot of diseases. What confuses me is

인간이란 본디 추악함을 가진다는 것
that humans by nature host to things awful;

마음의 병의 가짓수들만 400개가 더
that the diseases of the heart number over 400

되는데 해당 안 되는 자 거 별로 없단 것
and there aren’t many that don’t fit into a category

Yo 병든 게 세상인지 나인지
Yo, is it me or the world that’s diseased

단순히 바라보는 해석들의 차인지
Is it simply the difference in interpretations

그게 다인지
Is that all

I don’t know 누군가를 바꿔보는 것 (1)
그것보다 빠른 것은 (2) 내가 변화하는 것 (3)
I don’t know, faster than (2) changing a person (1)
is changing me (3)

💊

👟

(Sick  tired)

But I don’t wanna mess up

Cause life goes on

(Through the fire)

걸어갈게 더 나답게 woah
I’ll walk it, as who I am, woah

(Walk it, walk it, walk it)

밤이 되면 내 두 눈 감고서
When it turns to night, I want to close my two eyes and

(Walk it, walk it, walk it)

내가 알던 날 다시 믿을래
trust the person I know I used to be

자 일어나 one more time
Now, stand up, one more time

다시 아침이야 오늘을 나야 해
It’s morning again, I need to live today out

가보자고 one more night
Let’s go, one more night

이 끝에 뭐가 있을지 몰라 ayy
I don’t know what’ll be at the end of this, ayy

영원한 밤은 없어
There’s no eternal night
Make It Right: “In an eternal night for which an end could not be seen, / You are the one who gifted me with the morning”
Spring Day: “The morning will come again, / for no darkness, no season / can be eternal”


난 강해졌어
I’ve become stronger

불꽃이 터져
Fireworks burst

I will never fade away

👟

버려 겁겁겁 버려
Throw it away, fearfearfear, throw it away


Two interpretations
At first, I thought this track was about the disease of overworking and being overworked, but I think the last stanzas dismantle that. The blazing, positive determination showcased there doesn’t seem to reflect what would be a grim reality if this premise was true: deciding to grit his teeth and simply power through the stress, exhaustion, and anxiety of work, waylaid by meagre promises of material goods and the gaslighting by those around him saying the problem isn’t the system, it’s himself. 

It must instead be about the disease of overthinking in your work rather than just going for it, about drowning in frustrations and anxieties due to abrupt changes and destroyed dreams. Said another way, the disease is a dis-ease in the present reality. This allows for the track to be the light to Track 3’s shadow, and fall firmly within the theme of the whole album. Big Hit’s press release did after all describe BE to be about their “feelings about this situation—fear and anxiety mingled with the determination to overcome all this. The album contains the band’s emotions and ruminations they had throughout this year, and the story of “us” continuing the existential journey.” 

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doyoubangtan

hi! i'm wisha. find me at @doyou_bangtan!

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