BTS: All the Signs Their Next Album Will Be Called ‘Map of the Soul: Ego’

At the 2020 Golden Disc Awards, BTS made history as the first artists to take home both Daesangs for Album and Digital Song. The group also hinted at their upcoming album release and tour. With all of the hints at the 2020 Golden Disc Awards, it seems BTS’s next album might indeed be called Map of the Soul: Ego.

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BTS | JTBC PLUS/Imazins via Getty Images

Some hints made it seem like the group’s next album would be called ‘Map of the Soul: Shadow’

For months, it seemed everyone was convinced BTS’s next album would be called Map of the Soul: Shadow. ARMY was so convinced the media automatically became convinced as well.

Fans first began theorizing the album name after the release of the music video for “Intro: Persona.” In the video, RM stands in front of a chalkboard. The words “Map of the Soul” are written several times along with the words “Persona,” “Shadow,” and “Ego” in one section of the chalkboard.

With Map of the Soul: Persona being the first, fans assumed Map of the Soul: Shadow would be the second installment and Map of the Soul: Ego would complete the series.

We attended BTS’s Love Yourself: Speak Yourself [The Final], and the VCRs at the concerts placed an emphasis on shadows, light, and time. This seemed to cement fans’ theories about BTS’s comeback album being titled Map of the Soul: Shadow.

Fans started theorizing about ‘Map of the Soul: Ego’ after BTS’s MMA performance

At the 2019 Melon Music Awards, BTS performed a stellar set that was nearly 40 minutes long. The group performed “Intro: Persona,” “Boy in Luv,” “Boy With Luv,” “Mikrokosmos,” and “Dionysus.” They also referenced their past eras several times.

The performance and VCRs were layered with hints about BTS’s next comeback, and the hints seemed to point towards BTS’s album being called Map of the Soul: Ego. For starters, when RM performed “Intro: Persona,” “Ego” was written multiple times across the classroom set.

During a VCR, the members of BTS appeared as shadows. However, the shadows glitched, revealing imagery related to the BTS members’ individual HYYH story lines. Because the shadows glitched, it could be interpreted that the shadows were actually projections related to different personas.

BTS’s performance at the Golden Disc Awards hinted at ‘Map of the Soul: Ego’

A great deal of BTS’s comeback hints have come from their performances of “Dionysus,” which is the last song on their EP, Map of the Soul: Persona. While the EP did not have an official outro, “Dionysus” seems to be acting as one.

The song hints that BTS’s next comeback concept could incorporate Greek mythology. In the VCR before BTS’s performance of “Dionysus,” each member of BTS appeared as a different Greek god. RM also mentioned the word “Ego” multiple times.

Ego comes after Persona in Carl Jung’s teachings

Carl Jung is the psychiatrist and psychoanalyst who came up with the personality archetype theories BTS is incorporating in their current album series. To Jung, the Ego is one of the divisions of one’s mind that leads someone to discover who they are.

In the mind, Persona and Ego make up the consciousness division, with Persona being the closest to the Outer World. Ego is the next step in a hero archetype’s journey, and Shadow is the step after that. After going through this journey, one discovers their “Self,” also known as their “Soul” or “Higher-Self.”

There is another hint in the ‘Intro: Persona’ music video

When BTS released the music video for “Intro: Persona,” fans were quick to notice the order that “Persona,” “Shadow,” and “Ego” were written. However, after BTS’s Golden Disc Awards performance, fans noticed another clue.

Under the three words is a portion of a quote. The quote reads:

“A dream is the small hidden door in the deepest and most intimate sanctum of the soul, which opens to that primeval cosmic night that was soul long before there was conscious ego and will be soul far beyond what a conscious ego could ever reach. – Carl Jung”

Guess where fans have heard that quote before? That’s right. BTS’s VCR at the Golden Disc Awards. RM’s narration was a portion of that quote, meaning that BTS is strongly hinting that Map of the Soul: Ego could be the title of their next album.